I have such a problem with this comment for a few reasons, and I’ll tell you why.
Beth is my Mary Kay director.
For those of you who may not know, I joined the Mary Kay company a few months ago. Before joining, I was lured in with the promise that I’d make hundreds of dollars a week, love the job, and be a pro at it in no time. Well, it’s far from that.
I’m a struggling college student that can barely pay rent and hardly afford to eat a proper meal from day to day, but I got this brilliant idea that maybe if I moved a bit of money around and put some effort into it, I’d make the hundred back in at the most, a week. No, I didn’t. I payed $100 dollars for my start-up kit (which doesn’t include everything you need to “throw a proper MK party”), then had to sink an extra $50 into this company for prizes for the games you play when you throw these parties. So, in less than a month, I was out $150 without even thinking about it.
Before you start, you’re incouraged to attend your regions meetings. Not to my surprise, you have to pay to attend these meetings to help with upkeep on the building we rent, but your first meeting is free, so I went. I wasn’t told about the dress code of business casual (I was told it was in my phone training which I hadn’t yet finished), so I showed up in a blouse, nice shorts, and dressy sandals. Thank God I chose not to bum it that day, right? The entire meeting focused not on my clients, but on how to get more women to join, the free stuff you’d get if you did so, and a ton of fluff on how we’d all have so much fun as a team! I wathced as two women were “sworn in” and even in the MK oath, you’re to say how you’ll do yourself a favor and recruit as many women as you can. Still, nothing in there about the clients. I left feeling encouraged, but terrified.
I set up for my first party at my apartment. I deep cleaned my place, made sure everything was perfect, and was ready to have a great time. No one showed up. I thought back to why, and realised how much women hate hearing from MK consultants. All we are to them is another telemarketer, another money-sucking waste of time. We lure customers in with “free stuff,” but give them very little reward. People’s faces when I start to talk about Mary Kay is one of the prime reasons why I want out. People have started to doge my calls, and dread talking to me. As a young woman who has trouble finding and keeping great friendships, that’s not what I want at all. Through all this , I kept going, because I still had hope that things would turn around soon.
My debut party was thrown at my parents’ house because my director thought I’d have quite a lot of contacts there, which I do not. So, I sunk $20 on gas for there and back. After having no one purchase anything at my first party, I had booked three other parties that would require me to spend $20 or more on gas with no guarantee that I’d make any of that back, and I’d have to do that three times in the course of a week and a half. My director was present at this party to “show me how it’s done” and help me along the way (training), so I was pressured into doing certain things and truly felt awful for pressuring these women, my friends, into buying over-priced skincare products. Now, I don’t doubt, for one second, that MK products are quality (I love the products I use), but the price tag, even for me getting it half-priced, is over the top.
Then, there’s the matter of recruiting. My “training,” which was over the phone and little to no help to me at all, focused not on my customers, not on my clients, but the money I’d have to sink into my “business” to be “successful” and the ways I’d get other women to join in on this “success.” Out of the ten hours of phone training, I was only granted two of those to focus on my clients. I learned nothing about how our products are quality, which products work the best, or how to present them to the women I’d encounter. I was basically told if I didn’t sink about $1,400 into my “business,” I wouldn’t be as successful becuase I wouldn’t have a full store (inventory). You’re told during recruiting that you don’t NEED inventory in order to be successful, but once you’re in the company, you’re “highly encouraged” to purchase inventory if you want to be “truly successful.” I’ve never in my life had that kind of money in my bank account, and if I did, I’d never in my life think about spending on such a huge risk. My director upon hearing any of this would come back with, “If you risk a little, you get a little. If you risk a lot, you get a lot.” Well, I’ll let her pay my rent, get me gas, and buy my groceries for a few months and I’d be happy to “risk a lot.”
There’s a portion of your party where you take each person into a seperate room for a “one-on-one” talk about MK. This is where you pressure them even more into buying product, and where you lure them into the company with empty promises. Don’t worry, all of this is covered in your training. You can just feel the tension in the room when you know a woman cannot afford your product, but you keep pressuring her hoping she’ll break down. It’s wrong. I watched my director do it to each of my friends that I had invited. It’s as if you want them to feel back for using samples, but not making a purchase. I actually had one of my friends tell me they felt as if they’re on trial during this portion of my party.
Then, there’s the actual business side to your buiness. Taxes, income, office, orgnaization, phone calls, etc. I know nothings of taxes and was given no help on how that was supposed to go. I was told my “tax person” would do my taxes for me. Later, I was told how to organize my “office,” but would have to get all these desk organizers for different purposes, so more and more money. The more I “trained,” the more I realized I was planning on loosing hundreds of dollars before deaming of making an icome.
I have a probelm with this comment because from day one I’d been told not to “sit on my gold mine” and put all my time into Mary Kay. I have no plans on becoming like the “successful” women in the company. Want to know how they’re successful? They eat, breathe, and sleep Mary Kay. Most say wherever they go they at least tell one stranger that they’re a MK consultant. That lifestyle is not for me. I plan on focusing on my real dream, not some scheme I’ve been sucked into. So, I’ll throw my last party on June 30th for my best friend, do it the way I want (with just a ton of fun), and get out of the business.
The moral of the story? Don’t fall for Mary Kay’s Pink Pyramid Scheme unless you’re willing to sink a substantial amount of money into your “business,” work three times as hard, and only get little to no reward.
(I’m sure there’s more I could say, but I don’t want to waste anymore time on this company than I already have.)