Written by PinkPeace
The April 2008 issue of Applause magazine was raving about a 10-class week challenge…
Do thoughts of “motivation” and “momentum” create a rush of excitement on your business radar? Do success words cause you to click into recap mode, recalling your recent successes, re-evaluating results to improve your best performance? Then again, have you ever truly tested your known limits? Mary Kay Ash was a master at helping women expand their vision. Independent National Sales Director Janis Z. Moon often saw Mary Kay in action and was influenced by her example. When Janis issued a 10-show-week challenge to the women in her National Area, she was calling upon a tried-and-true Mary Kay method …
And if you thought national sales directors were out of touch with the lives of Mary Kay consultants and directors:
Last June, back when Janis was considering the challenge, reality came knocking. She knew she had to do what she expected of others, but she had no customers, and besides, it had been 12 years since she’d held a skin care class. She’d have to call Independent Sales Directors in her area for tips, and they had good-humoredly ribbed her about her ability to meet the goal. “My husband videotaped me opening a new Starter Kit, and he kept the tape rolling while I called people for bookings,” Janis reveals with a laugh.
When Mary Kay first introduced the concept of doing 10 shows in a week, it was in the ’60s, when women largely didn’t work outside the home and had the time and inclination to get together with friends for home parties. It was relatively easy to schedule a morning and an afternoon “beauty show” Monday through Friday when the kids were in school. The company was new, and there was no market saturation as of yet.
Fast forward 45 years, please. Women have JOBS now. They work outside the home, and when they finish at the end of the day, they want to spend time with their families, not playing makeup with the Mary Kay lady. They’ve been exposed to dozens of home-party businesses, and they don’t want to spend an entire evening listening to a sales pitch and feeling guilted into buying something so that the hostess will get a gift.
What’s more, there are hundreds of makeup and skin care brands for her to choose from now. Despite Mary Kay’s desperate claims of being “cutting edge,” there are a multitude of companies that truly do have the latest and greatest products. A woman can get these anywhere, from Wal-Mart to the department store, PLUS online at the press of a “send” key. There is simply no reason to subject yourself to two hours of a Mary Kay presentation to buy inferior skin care and color cosmetics.
Let’s be honest here for a moment. How many of us, when we were working Mary Kay hard, could ever manage to book more than 2 or 3 classes a week? How many of those actually held? Did you (like me) do everything the Mary Kay way – booking from previous appointments, warm chatter, ask for referrals, etc.? Given that we were told to book two or three classes to hold just one, how many of us really could say we had 20-30 classes booked for a week?!
I did a 20/20 years ago. That’s where you have 20 classes in 20 days – it used to be a big deal in Mary Kay world. As director, I had NO interest in ever doing a 20/20, but I did it. Why? Because that year, it would be my only chance to walk across stage at Seminar (not a good year for pinkpeace) . I worked my BUTT off to get it done. I called EVERY customer within 100 miles to beg for their help in doing a 20/20. I promised anything and everything as a booking incentive. I warm chattered, I put out fishbowls – you name it. And I was a pre-profiling machine, girlfriends. I was DETERMINED to hold 20 classes in 20 days.
Well, it became obvious that a class a day wasn’t going to happen. I would book, but then life would happen and the person couldn’t have the class. It was in June, and everyone had graduations and weddings to go to. Etc., etc. – you know the deal.
I was heartbroken until my senior director suggested me an interesting little tip. “Pinkpeace,” she said to me. “A class in Mary Kay is defined as 3 people with at least $100 in sales. So if your hostess has 4 people and at least $200 in sales, you can count it twice. Hostess plus Guest 1 and Guest 2 and $100. Hostess plus Guest 3 and Guest 4 and $100. Heck, if she has 6 people at her class and $300 in sales, you can count it as 3 classes.”
Oh happy day! I started booking huge spa parties with 12 people and counting it as 5 classes. Whew! My senior said it was okay, and I trusted her completely. (And by the way, Mary Kay collected special 20/20 paperwork detailing the guests and the sales, so I had to document everything.) Yes, I finished 20/20 and walked across the stage. It was still a big accomplishment, because I had to book and hold more appointments than I normally would, but it was NOT one skin care class a day for 20 days.
SO . . .
If we read in the June Applause magazine that Janis Moon or any other NSD or director held a 10-class week, I will bet you a box of chocolates that she had an open house and a calculator and worked out groups of three that totaled whatever amount MK counts as a class minimum. And really, for what? Oh that’s right. To find new consultants to sign, not to build a true customer base. But that’s a subject for another post!