Talking Mary Kay Consultants Out of Returning Inventory

Here’s a tried and true method of talking a consultant out of returning her inventory. We wouldn’t want her to do that! After all, the sales director will get a commission chargeback if the consultant returns her products.

We are all well aware of Mary Kay’s 90% buyback policy, whereby an independent consultant or sales director can return inventory purchased within the last year for 90% of its wholesale value. (Details here.)

Often, this is touted as some big privilege, and one of the many reasons recruits should sign up with Mary Kay. They are being offered a “no risk” opportunity with a wonderful company that is oh-so generous to the consultants. (Well there really is a risk, isn’t there, when you consider the 10% lost, the cost of supplies, the cost of shipping, the cost of interest on your credit card, etc?)

Yet when the time comes for a consultant to say “so long” to Mary Kay Cosmetics and exercise this option, the sales directors try everything in their power to talk them out of it! Of course, it’s not because they’re really looking out for the well-being of the consultant and her family, is it? It is more likely because the sales director doesn’t want to have to pay back the commission on the returned inventory (known as a commission chargeback).

I’m told that this is the script that Lisa Allison uses to help talk consultants out of returning their inventory:

Dealing with Product Return and Commission Chargeback

***The Most important thing to remember is to ask lots of questions. You’ve got to ask questions.***

*What do you remember @ the excitement you felt when you first signed your agreement? (Write down what they say. Don’t let them get into “buts”. Repeat the question if you have to. You are going to bring them back to their “why” later)

She needs to feel needed:

*We’ve been friends a long time. I need your friendship and MK aside our friendship will stand. (If friends)

*When did your feelings about things change?

*Did your dreams change, did your “why” change, or do you think you just ran up against some obstacles and got frustrated?

*I could tell you horror stories about consultants who returned their products and closed that door forever and then something changed in their life and for some reason they needed MK. I don’t want that to happen to you. You know, forever is a long time.

Concerning commission chargeback:

*If you were the President of MK and you paid a consultant commission on an order that one of her team members placed and then that team member turned around and returned the product, wouldn’t you ask for the commission back on those items? What would you do? MK is so generous to us but this is a business. They have to make smart and sensible business decisions.

*Think about this… If you were in my shoes – if you were and Director, and a consultant added her very first team member, do you think I should say at that time, “Congratulations, but I just want you to know that the consultant can return her products at any time and you will have to pay that commission back.” What would you do?

*You know, MK is so good about making sure we have all the information we need about the business to be successful, but it is our responsibility to read the print. It’s all there (Career Essentials-pg.17) but we have to take advantage of it.

*I’m a new Director. What could I do differently or better in the future?

***If she still insists on returning her products, have an exit interview with her in person.***

***The following information was received from a Consultant who sold back product and has given permission to forward her words to others. You can send a letter or E-mail with the following:

Hi [sales director],

Remember me? xxxxxxxxxx?

I would like to start this letter with an apology. I know that I alone can not make or break your business, but I also know that when I returned product it took away from your production and caused you to have to return some commissions paid, and for that I am truly sorry.

This has been a roller coaster year for me. I have spent the last couple of months looking back over my previous mistakes and failures. I have been upset with myself over giving up so quickly and so easily. In looking back, I see how I allowed the opinion of certain negative influences to dictate my actions. I take full responsibility. The sign of a successful person is not that they have never failed, but that they have failed many times and always continued to try. Unfortunately, I quit before I even gave myself a chance to get back on the horse after only one fall.

I regret with all of my being that I will never have the opportunity to know where I could have taken my Mary Kay career. Sending back product was the equivalent of saying, “I am a failure. I do not want to succeed. I quit. I give up. I will not put in the work necessary to reap the rewards.” If there was any way to take back that action, I surely would.

What all of this has taught me is that I do not want to be that person. I have continued to watch your future national area expand and I wish I were still a part of that team. You and the women in your future national area are on fire! What an incredible opportunity I missed to be associated with positive, go-getting woman!

While you do not know it, you have continued to influence me. I have realized that in order to become the woman I know God made me to be, I have to emulate the strong, successful women. So thank you, Allison, for being a role model. Thank you for showing me and countless others what determination, integrity, and perseverance can do.

If the Mary Kay rule book ever changes and allows for those who returned product to acknowledge the error of their ways and be a part of the company again, please let me know. In the meantime, I will continue to use the lessons I have learned from this experience and from you to hopefully find an incredible opportunity to grow and shine…though, I do not believe there is another opportunity as wonderful as I one I so quickly gave up. I wish you and James and your area all the best God has to offer.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Wow! I guess Lisa covered it all. Make her feel needed. Reminder her that you’re friends (yeah, right). Give her a little guilt about your commission chargeback. Make sure she knows she’s a loser and quitter if she returns her inventory. Remind her of how she won’t be in our little sorority if she quits. Make her think her dreams won’t come true without Mary Kay. Bravo, ladies. Quite the performance.

16 thoughts on “Talking Mary Kay Consultants Out of Returning Inventory”

  1. My director tried to set up a talk with me, but thanks to Pink Truth I was prepared and knew what this “exit interview” would consist of. I refused to talk to her and told her I made my decision and nothing she said could change it.

    Best decision I’ve ever made!

  2. My own SD would never have helped me return product and now I know why. I am so glad that I was in MK before the internet was a huge part of the equation. At least I was not stalked by my SD through email, facebook conference calls or text message. Fortunately another director helped me with the process of returning product. Since I was too sick to sell, I felt I owed my husband and young children the decency of getting my money back. Just after I became a consultant I noticed a news paper ad where a consultant was selling their product at half price. This was way before e bay or Craig’s list. When I called her she mentioned that if she returned the product to Corp, she could never be a Consultant again. That sounded awful because I’m sure she was brain washed into believing leaving MK permanently was horrible. I was so indoctrinated that for months after I left, I missed being with those fake friends and at those fake meetings. I guess I missed the thought that somehow magically MK was going to give me a great life financially, helping women, having friends etc. In reality MK was a series of lies women told to each other pretending that if they followed these carefully crafted sales pitches, somehow everyone’s dreams would come true. In reality only the original NSD Emeritus those who began with MK herself back in the 1960’s or 70’s when MK was shiny & new were able to finally get those Cadillac’s and those million dollar salaries. After all those women had the USA, Canada & Mexico in which to recruit. If you can’t do door to door sales when that was the norm in 3 different countries with thousands of women, then something was really wrong. Now a days we are tripping over consultants in our area and product on ebay. MK has been around far too long and there are no short cuts. Plus I doubt MK corporate wants more NSD’s that will cut into their profits.

  3. I fell for that stupid “just have a big sale, don’t send it back” line. I felt sorry for my director and actually thought she’d help with the sale– yeah, right! I couldn’t even give the crap away and I still regret not sending a big up yours to MK corp by sending it back…..

  4. Is there really a problem with consultants getting other consultants products that were returned?? My former “sister” directors always said that the 10% went into destroying the product.

  5. It was so much fun sending my unwanted products back! I did it while my Dir was at Seminar and she did not know so too late for “the discussion”. I kept what I use and my loyal customers use. Now it’s fun to sell it until it runs out. Then I’m going to be subversive and get it online! IT FEELS GREAT TO GET THE MK MONKEY OFF MY BACK!

  6. Not once in Lisa Allison’s Nonsense did I read… “h I am so sorry this has not worked for you” All I read was a bunch of hopping and skipping and jumpintng around and generally the actions of not trying to help the exiting nt.

    Cannot these women consider someone else for a change? Never Mind. According to some,and I have heard it said in the Mary Kay sisterhood) – “Friendship is friendship and money is money” – and those selfish directors don’t want anyone messing with her money.

    Oh well… Only one positive solution was given… Have a sale. And that assumes that the product can be sold in the current market and if the exiting consultant has what the left behind customer wants. => Those two don’t often match. Go Figure.

    I say… The directors should create a Product Share Consortium so that all exiting conslultants can share their products (If they choose not to return the product) – with the staying consultants and the leaving consultants should get whole sale + a little profit. => Solustion means that the director gets no charge-backs but she has to help sell the extra product, Staying conslultants don’t have to over-order to get one product… If it’s in the “product share” then she just has to leave the wholesale + the agreed upon profiitt, and the leaving consultant has money trickling in for products she couldn’t sell but didn’t return. (Just one hair-rained scheme that might work with a little cooperation).

    Anyway… It just boils down to greed, manipulation, lies, guilt and tossing away people as if they just don’t count. I had big respect for Lisa Allison… but not anymore…

    1. There already is a Product Share Consortium, but it works a little differently.
      1. Consultant puts personal labels on MK products.
      2. Consultant send product back to MK for refund with labels affixed.
      3. MK Corp doesn’t spot labels and restocks product.
      4. Product is re-sold to the next recruit.
      5. New recruit gets “shared” product.
      6. New recruit calls number on label and gets a blistering earful.
      7. Wash, rinse, repeat.

  7. I was told by my (now) former director that they toss it, because they can’t guarantee that it was unused. But we’ll see. I had talked to her tonight, she seems cool about it. Said that I was nice enough to be upfront instead of falling off the radar. I’ll see her tomorrow to pay her back for the Emerald Noir palette I borrowed.

  8. MLM Radar;

    Holy cow, I hadn’t thought of that! Priceless is what that is. Good catch.

    And, that, Ladies and Gentlemen, is why I can’t stop reading PT. It just goes down so good with coffee and doughnuts.

  9. They destroy it. FDA guidelines say that products into a consumer’s hands cannot be sold into another consumer’s hands for sanitary reasons.

    1. Ah, but the products an IBC returns never reached a consumer. They just reached the retailer – you.

      Products that actually reach a real consumer can be returned for a 100% refund according to Mary Kay’s satisfaction guarantee. Products that only make it as far as the IBC get only 90% refunded.

      It’s just another legal loophole that keeps Mary Kay corporate profitable at the expense of their sales force.

  10. Boxing up and shipping out my inventory was absolutely SO much fun. I kept hearing a “ka-ching” in my head as I tallied up another item, but then, as I totaled up the grand total value of what I was sending back, I did secretly have pleasure thinking how much my Senior was going to have to lose in her commissions as a chargeback. It was a lot. And then when that check came—wow! It was so freeing!!

  11. This is so true. When I quit MK, my director immediately started texting me saying, “Are you sure?” “Don’t you want to stick it out for a couple more months?” “How about I throw you a party to sell your product?” blah blah blah. I held firm and said no party, no sticking it out. I was done, and I don’t feel bad at all.

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