Friday, February 22, 2008

"Failure" in Mary Kay (or any other company)

Since we have had several comments that have mentioned that MK "ain't my first rodeo," I felt this would be a good topic to discuss in general - since many people have tried more than one Direct Sales company in his/her career.

Some people might even hesitate joining Mary Kay because they have tried other companies and did not do as well as they had hoped. Or they hesitate to join because friends and family might say, "Weren't you selling XYZ Widgets six months ago?"

I hope this post will help ease their minds.

Imagine, if you will, walking into a job interview. You are 40 years old and have been out of college for 18 years. You hand the interviewer your resume, and he looks it over for a moment.

Then he turns to you and says, "I see you have failed at several companies before coming to the one you work at now. Now you are about to fail in your current job and want to come aboard with us. What is wrong with you?"

Can you see that happening? Of course not.

But why not? Why is it considered rude and appalling to be asked that in connection to your work history?

Because people understand that people leave companies for a variety of reasons. It doesn't mean the company is bad or the employee "failed" - it just means that the employee moved to a different job.

Why should choosing a Direct Sales company be any different?

I am 40 years old. I have been in more than one DS company. Over the course of 20+ years, I have been in some companies that closed, and some were not a good "fit" for me. Some I joined simply for the discount, and the starter kit had awesome stuff in it. LOL

Did I "fail" in those companies? No, I don't believe so. I did not duck my head and run when I left. The ones who closed - I had no control over that. (No more so than when an employee is laid off when a company closes.) I learned a lot at each company and met some awesome people. How can that be failure?

I did not go into debt for any company - so I had no bitterness or regrets in that aspect. However, even in the worst-case scenario that I have seen happen to some reps (the company shuts down and they are stuck with inventory - so they cannot return it), I have learned from smart women came out on top by using their heads and selling what they had on hand by whatever means they could (lesson learned - don't panic and use your smarts to make the best of a bad situation). How can that be failure?

There were some companies that I joined to get a good discount on products that I love. I got what I wanted and also met some nice people along the way. How can that be failure?

You don't really know what a company is truly like until you join it and get the Policies and Procedures Manual. Then you know the ins and outs of the company. I have joined companies before and knew immediately that the company was not for me. No big deal. I used the products in my starter kit and I learned the specific types of questions to ask before joining a DS company, so I can find out things before I sign on the dotted line. (Kind of like learning the right questions to ask during a job interview.) How can that be failure?

There was a company I joined (almost 20 years ago - am I that old??? LOL) and made very little money. I invested a lot in tapes, books and functions. I sponsored like crazy. I put lots of miles on my car (this was in the pre-internet days - you had to "show the plan" in person). But after paying for expenses, there was very little profit. But what I gained? Public speaking skills, friendships (that last till this day), selling skills, and a LOT more self-confidence. (I still use some of the products, too - love 'em.) How can that be failure?

There were 3 companies I joined that went out of business. One company was a telecommunications company - no inventory, so I was not in trouble with that. The other two did not encourage inventory, so I sold off what little I had at full retail. I made money in these companies and made some lasting friendships - again, that last until this day. How can that be failure?

When people question why I have been with more than one company, I don't go into a long story. I simply say that they were not a good fit and leave it at that. I know the details, and that is what is important to me.

Just because I did not stay with a particular company, however, does NOT mean I will tell someone that they will succeed or "fail." My track record with a company has no bearing whatsoever on what someone else will or will not do. Period.

Why do some people feel the need to put the Scarlet Letter of "F" for "Failure" on those who have tried more than one company? I do not know. I have my theories. Maybe they have "failed" at companies (their word, not mine) and feel they have to label others in order to feel okay. Maybe they are afraid of not achieving a dream they have - so it is better to not try at all and ridicule others for even trying. Maybe they are just unhappy, bitter, depressing people all of the time and have no joy in their lives.

I don't know - and I don't bother worrying about it.

All I know is that I have a SCC tonight - and I will have fun and make some money.

And that, my friends, is not failure.


  1. I must be lost. I thought this was a site about finding out the truth about MK. But Shay is the one writing the articles and she HASN'T EVEN SOLD ANYTHING YET!! She's worse than a personal use consultant. She hasn't even been in business for more than mere HOURS.

    And sorry to burst your bubble, Shay, but employers DO NOT like to see a bunch of previous employments on an application. You're 40, and you still don't know what you want to be when you grow up? Yes, I think MK is a perfect fit for you.

  2. dont pay attention to that last comment shay

    So what if you just got started. Your enthusiam helps me and I've been around for 10 years.

    there are folks on PT who have NEVER sold anything in Mary Kay have NEVER been consultants and are going around acting like they are experts and folks believe everything they say.

    You have more experience than them, at least you have sold MK before.

    I would take your experiences and advice over somone who had never been in this business on any day.

    Keep going, honey,you will be just fine.

  3. The Truth about Mary Kay also needs to provide information on how to be better doing Mary Kay. Articles on attitude, personalities, etc... all help one run a better business. I haven't seen where Shay is telling anyone how to win a car or become a director. Her articles lend information on other tools that help one in business.

    I also think it will be interesting to others to see the "growth" from (sort of anti-MK) to Mk Customer to brand new consultant and her way up the career path.

    Please this site has been a place that even different opinions are respected and discussed, individuals aren't attack and we all agree there will be diffent opinions.

    I can't speak for everyone but I would prefer you don't come here and attack an individual. There are other blogs for that and if you are so anti-mk, I am sure you know the site to visit since any posetive post will just be deleted.

    If you have a question, ask, you will get answers and different opinions.

    And Shay has been a consultant before, so she is familiar with the Company and how it works.

    Have a great day, everyone, we are getting slammed with a winter storm!

    Maybe we will actually be able to do some snowmobiling tomorrow!

  4. Wow! Anonymous must be a popular name around here. LOL

    Actually, you are wrong. I have already made sales because I have let my friends and family know I was starting my MK biz back up. I will make more sales this evening. (Once again a case of someone spouting off without knowing a thing about the truth - because they have not asked.) I have already chatted with my sponsor, explained that I already had orders, and we discussed how best to handle my first few weeks in business.

    In case you have not noticed - I am only one of several people writing for this blog. MK4ME has a great deal more experience than I do and is a wonderful contributor for this blog. David's wife is doing quite well in MK and his insight is invaluable as well - but he is busy. He asked for help in writing, and I am happy to help.

    Am I new to MK? Technically, yes. The MK I just joined is quite different from the one I belonged to many years ago. I am admittedly on a learning curve. That doesn't mean I have nothing to contribute.

    If you will re-read my post, I did not say employers like to see "a bunch" of previous employers. However, they do expect to see more than one or two in 20 years.

    Finally, I know EXACTLY what I want to be "when I grow up" - a homeschooling mother. It is the career I have chosen. I will be that for the next 15 years and I love it.

    Live long and prosper, Anon.

  5. Thank you for the support, foreverpink and MK4ME!


  6. MK4ME -

    I really hope my posts will help those who are either just starting, thinking about starting, or just want to watch the progress of a newbie.

    I write about sales - I have made sales in Mary Kay.

    I write about other things I have experience in.

    I think the great thing about this blog is that there are so many different levels of experience here! I think it is a great way to share ideas with each other from different experiences and levels of achievement.

    That is one reason why I love this blog so much.

  7. Jumping from job to job and going from MLM to MLM are exactly the same: It's what a loser does. Let's face it Shay - You can't hold down a job and you can't make it in MLM either. (I actually think failing in MLM is an honorable thing, it's just that most people get a clue much faster than you and quit joining over and over.) For all of your bragging about being a good sales person, the truth is that you can't keep a job and you don't do well at MLMs. Oh... that's right... you "chose" to leave jobs and MLMs. Mmmm hmmm. Tell that to the next person who interviews you. It's not a bad thing to be unqualified and unskilled. Just call it what it is.

  8. Dear Anon, post above:

    PLEASE!! I can't speak for everyone but I would prefer you don't come here and attack an individual. There are other blogs for that and if you are so anti-mk, I am sure you know the site to visit since any posetive post will just be deleted.

    You are discussing nothing you are just being rude.

  9. Anonymous - Shay is a REAL person with REAL feelings.

    Shay - I hope the best for you. I do feel it is very difficult to make money in an MLM. You may want to consider - create an annual forecast of end sales to customers and try to work into how many regular customers you should have in order to reach your target goal of how much money you want to make. I did something similar when I was considering Silpada - I broke it down into quarters. I know sales estimates are not easy to do (corporations struggle at this too!)but at least you will have an initial plan and then you can track against it and adjust it as needed. I hope that helps. (It doesn't have to be detailed, just a rough cut at it. Don't get wound up over being too precise, just be "directionally correct".")
    Good luck and take care.

  10. Anonymous,

    Your cowardice precedes you. This blog IS designed to discover the so called “truth” about the Mary Kay business.

    From the very beginning, everyone with a Mary Kay experience has been welcome. It is my belief that in considering the myriad versions of experiences that have been had we can discover and reveal an overall impression of what one could potentially expect should they choose to pursue involvement in Mary Kay.

    As such, I have invited anyone that is so inclined to become an author for this site. So far only Shay has taken me up on that invitation to the extent that she has.

    I have not deleted any of your comments yet because I have communicated with Shay and know that she recognizes your insecurity for what it is and has not given your hostility the ground that you apparently hoped she would.

    Having said that, this blog is designed to be a place for people to share their PERSONAL experiences with Mary Kay. It is NOT a place to attack someone on a personal level.

    If you have a personal experience with Mary Kay, please feel free to share it. I have asked others before, and will ask you as well, to please select a “name” by clicking on the radio button that says “name/url” so that we do not confuse you with another anonymous commentator.

    In case I have not made myself clear, I will repeat in very simple terms.

    If you have a Mary Kay experience – good, bad, or otherwise – you may share it.

    If all you intend to do is make hostile personal attacks against individuals on this site, I will be forced to begin deleting those comments.

    Thank you in advance for your cooperation.

  11. Anonymous -

    I am not sure who peed in your cornflakes, but I know it wasn't me. Your open hostility is hilarious.

    I have not been on an interview in years and never plan to have another one, to be honest. I have children to raise, and by the time my youngest has left home, I will not be looking to re-enter the traditional workforce - it just has no appeal to me.

    Am I good at sales? Yep. I am. Period. Guess you will just have to trust me on that one. ;)

    Does it bother you that someone has just joined MK and is already having some success? It sounds like it bothers you a lot. Too bad.

    It is also a pity that you hide behind an anonymous posting. That's real courageous of you. Tsk Tsk.

    And the fact that you don't believe someone can stay home, homeschool and just be a Mom - by choice - well, that is a sad commentary for your character.

    Now, like David said, I have no problem defending myself on this blog Not only that, but a good fight is always good for more hits for the blog. ;) However, your personal attacks are not what this blog is about. It wastes the time and energy of everyone here.

    Live long and prosper, Anonymous.

  12. Anonymous -

    I obviously don't know you, but your hostility speaks volumes.

    Could it be that you have made some unwise business decisions while in some Direct Sales biz and that stings the ego a bit? But you can't blame YOURSELF for the decisions you made, so it has to be the big bad MLM's fault? Hmmm?

    Lashing out at me won't help you.

    Live long and prosper, Anon.

  13. Thanks to everyone with positive comments on here!

    I am flying high as a kite after my first few days back in MK. NOTHING bothers me right now! WOO HOOOOOOO!!!

  14. Good girl, Shay! Glad you stood your ground. If you are confident about what you do, nothing can bring you down. ;)

  15. Shades -

    I am so excited! This has been an awesome week!

    Thanks for the encouragement!

  16. You are having quite a week! We're all cheering you on! It is so much fun to watch your business grow before our eyes. :D And I'll type my name correctly this time! :P


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