Talking You Out of Returning Your Inventory

This email has been circulating for years. It is meant to seem professional, almost as if it was a real live exit interview from a real live job. It also makes it seem as if your sales director cares why you’re leaving Mary Kay.

The truth is that all she really cares about is you not returning your inventory so she doesn’t get a commission chargeback. She doesn’t care what you do with that inventory, as long as you don’t send it back to Mary Kay.

You will notice that during the interview she makes it seem like she is really interested in the reasons the woman is quitting. Yet it’s clear what the focus is when she talks up how much the woman will “lose” if she sends back inventory. There’s the real focus.

Behold the “exit interview”:

Thanks to the advice from Sales Directors xxxxx xxxxxxx and xxxxxx xxxxx, I put together this brief survey as an “Exit Interview” when a consultant suggests that she’s ready to ship her products back to the company and close her MK Business.

I did my first exit interview using this script (Below) last night with a $3600 inventory. We left each other on a VERY positive note. And while she is still deciding what she wants to do, she’s very strongly considering not sending product back. At the very least, she will leave Mary Kay knowing what a wonderful and caring company we are.

Here’s what I did:

First of all, it’s Soooooooo important to do this in person rather than over the phone!! She can see and feel your heart in person. Travel to her if necessary.

1. Once I learned of her decision, I immediately called her and said: “Hillary, I understand that you have made the decision to not continue your Mary Kay business. The next step in the process is that we get together for an ‘Exit Interview.’ During that time I will give you your options of closing your business, and you will leave with the paperwork necessary if you choose to send the product back.

Hillary, I hold these exit interviews for two reasons–first I made a commitment to you as your Sales Director to help you through every stage of your business, even if that means closing your business. I will not try to talk you out of your decision ((note: this is their biggest fear about getting together with you)).

Second, I use these interviews as a way to learn as much as I can so I can improve my training within my unit. The best way to learn what doesn’t work in Mary Kay, is to talk with someone who is closing their business

2. She was more than okay with meeting with me, so we met at a diner close to her home. We small talked, and chit chatted for a bit to ease any uncomfortableness. The moment I felt that we were friends, I began the interview. I learned SEVERAL THINGS in this process. I’ll share that in a moment.

3. I spelled out in D-E-T-A-I-L what she will be losing if she chose to send product back, and what she would gain if she chose to sell it at cost (see details below). She purchased during the time where she received well over $1000 in new consultant and monthly ordering bonuses. There was a $1000 difference between selling back to MK and selling it at cost to friends/family/customers. I stapled this sheet to her pink form.

I learned several things through this interview:

a. She had NO communication or support from her recruiter once she came into Mary Kay. In fact I learned that her recruiter continued to pursue Hillary’s family and friends as customers and recruit prospects (ACKKK!!!) (A huge red flag to me that I needed to do more Golden Rule Business training!)

b. I learned that she LOVED having me as a director and she thought the training and support from me was great (I took her with me to my classes). However, because she had zero communication with her recruiter, she still felt lost. She didn’t want to bog me down with little questions that she had because she felt that I was probably too busy.

c. I learned that the $3600 package was too big for someone like Hillary. She shared with me in the beginning that she just wanted to do Mary Kay for fun. However when I met with her and her husband during the orientation process (He is in the sales field), I think he wanted to do Mary Kay more than she did!! It made total sense to him and he excitedly bought the $3600 package for her. She told me in her exit interview that this size package was too overwhelming to her.

Exit Interview

1. What was it about the Mary Kay opportunity that excited you? Why did you want to become a consultant?____________

2. Why are you deciding to close your business? ________________

3. How did Mary Kay Inc. not meet your needs? ____________

4. How did I not meet your needs as your sales director? _______________

5. On a scale of one to 10, how would you rate the following? (If less than 10, ask her to explain).

1. The Products?______
2. Training and education?______
3. Explanation of Inventory Options? _______
4. Sales Director Support?______
5. Company Support? _______
6. Recruiter Support?______

6. Do you understand that if you send product back to the company that you may never be a Mary Kay consultant again?

$3600 Wholesale Inventory

If Returned to the Mary Kay – You will receive $3,240 through the 90 percent buy-back guarantee. You do not receive $$ from Mary Kay for your free product bonuses, which are valued at $516 (wholesale value).

If Sold at Cost – You will receive $4,116… Wholesale Inventory = $3600 + Free Product Bonuses = $516 at wholesale. You may profit by selling your free product bonuses.

If Returned to the Mary Kay – You are closing the door indefinitely to your Mary Kay opportunity. You may not be a consultant again

If Sold at Cost – You may continue to purchase Mary Kay products at cost. And you may pick up your business at a later date.

Ways to sell product at cost:

1. Have a 50 percent off going-out-of-business sale over your web site or at your home. Your recruiter or director will help you have an event at your home if you’d like.

2. Let your existing customer’s know you are closing your business for now, and ask their help to liquidate products. Schedule classes and facials with them, and let them know they will receive products at cost/free for helping you. Your director or recruiter can help you hold appointments, and we’ll support the customers after that appointment.

3. Give your friends, family members, customers Look Books and Beauty Books to take to work and sell products for you at discount.

4. Have your friends, family members, customers hold a web show for you, where everyone get’s products at cost. If you don’t have a web site, your MK recruiter/Director will help you.

There you have it. The grand plea to not return the inventory to the company.

And don’t forget, if it was so EASY to sell the products, no one would need to return them in the first place!

9 thoughts on “Talking You Out of Returning Your Inventory”

  1. I was a lucky one. My SD ignored my not attending meetings. When you are in the pink fog, leaving is very traumatic. I felt lost and wondered what I would now do. Putting MK on a job application just didn’t seem professional. Thank goodness I didn’t stay with MK for too long. Other consultants and directors mentioned never being able to come back to MK once you returned product. When you are in the pink world, leaving seems so final. After all it wasn’t just a job but much of your life. I believed the hype, the stories, the possibility of helping women and doing good in this world. I believed my SD, recruiter, NSD and other women going to meetings, retreats and seminar were friends. I believed they all cared about each other and the philosophies of go give, faith first, Family 2nd and career 3rd. How could others I had encountered (who warned me against MK) be right. How embarrassing that I had been conned by a MLM business. I also believed in that dual marketing thing when deep down I suspected it really was mlm. How humiliating to go off and start all over. I had left my former career for good reasons. I wanted to be a stay at home mom. MK offered an opportunity to have the best of both worlds. Then suddenly my husband was worried, I was away too often from my children. The MK friends weren’t real friends. Others including Directors were leaving (especially after seminar). During seminar I caught glimpses of phoniness and that not all was well within the MK world of consultants, directors and even NSD’s. Even though no one actually talked about it. Thanks to Pink Truth I finally have validation that what I experienced back then was what many, many women in North America and beyond were feeling and knew. Now with the thousands of products being sold on ebay, I can look back and be thankful that I did send the product back. That what I sensed was right and true. That MK not only for myself but for so many others simply took my money and gave very little in return. To anyone hesitating about sending product back (even after hearing from your Director). Take a look at your credit card bills, take a look at the product on your shelf. Can you sell it all within the next few months or weeks? If not send it back now. You are worth it. I learned that after MK, no one cared. My director and fellow consultants didn’t care that I was sick. It was like I never existed to begin with.

  2. And if she shared from the beginning that she only wanted to do it for fun, why did you take the husbands order, instead of what YOU KNOW, would have been better for her?

    Don’t bother, I know.

    Mary Kay unfortunately has set this business up, so that what is good for the consultant is not good for the Director (and the company). Imagine that.

  3. Ultimately what’s good for the director – in the SHORT run – will be bad for the director on the LONG run. Very bad.

    She avoids an inventory charge-back, true. But to do that she floods the market with even more half-off products. How does any other consultant have any hope of success selling at full retail price when her customers can get all the products they want at half off? Thus the seeds are sown for more consultants to quit.

    Avoid a chargeback now and doom yourself to failure. It’s the Mary Kay way!

  4. Self-serving and loaded with tall-tales:

    I did my first exit interview using this script last night with a $3600 inventory. She’s very strongly considering not sending product back. (Right, you just used it last night for a large inventory. What a coincidence.)

    The next step in the process is that we get together for an ‘Exit Interview.’ (But it’s NOT the ‘next step in the process.’ There is no process. There is no ‘exit interview.’ You made it up!)

    I use these interviews as a way to learn as much as I can so I can improve my training within my unit. She was more than okay with meeting with me. I learned that she LOVED having me as a director and she thought the training and support from me was great. (Well, of COURSE you are wonderful and faultless!)

    I learned that the $3600 package was too big for someone like Hillary. She told me this size package was too overwhelming to her. (It was only “overwhelming” because no one wanted to buy it, especially at full retail. If she had sold it all and made 50% profit, she’d be dancing for joy.)

    When I met with her and her husband during the orientation process He is in the sales field, I think he wanted to do Mary Kay more than she did!! It made total sense to him and he excitedly bought the $3600 package for her. (Yawn…Husband is in sales. He bought the $3600 pkg for her. He was excited. It made ‘total sense to him.’ Another fairy-tale.)

  5. During that time I will give you your options of closing your business, and you will leave with the paperwork necessary if you choose to send the product back.

    Another lie to add to the heap of lies! She’s NOT going to leave with the return paperwork, because the director doesn’t have the paperwork, and doesn’t have the authority to issue the paperwork. Only Mary Kay corporate has that authority.

    As far as options are concerned, if the director had any genuine options for selling that inventory – options that really worked – don’t you think she’d have said something LONG before now?

    Hmmmm?

  6. “I learned that she LOVED having me as a director and she thought the training and support from me was great (I took her with me to my classes).”

    Oh please. Do you really think she would have said to your face, “I can’t stand you as my director”?

    “I will not try to talk you out of your decision ((note: this is their biggest fear about getting together with you))”

    What a crock. OF COURSE she’s trying to talk her out of her decision. She’s giving her every possible roadblock to keep from sending her product back – with the very first obstacle being this totally bogus exit interview.

    Having been a director who absorbed her fair share of chargebacks, I guarantee you that I did anything humanly possible to prevent a consultant returning product, especially on an order of this size. You can try to spin it as go-give as you want, but this approach is the work of a panicked director wondering how she’ll pay her bills if she has to absorb a big chargeback.

  7. Sometimes, all that a person needs to do is eat up their losses and move on.

    She loses $360 by sending back her inventory. The process takes maybe two or three days worth of effort to catalog what she has, fill out the form, and mail it out. Soon, she’ll get the blue check and can finally close this embarrassing chapter of her life. That money she lost she can just chalk up to “lesson learned.”

    Her director’s suggestion of selling at cost assumes that she’ll be able to sell every single thing she has. We all know she most likely won’t. This liquidation sale would also take up more than three days of her life, would take a massive amount of effort (every single suggestion on how to sell her products again assumes that people are actually willing to sell these for you—and that people do want to buy them), with absolutely no guarantee she’ll be able to recoup her losses. Heck, she may end up with even more expenses just to get rid of her products!

    The smartest thing anyone can do while at Mary Kay is to quit, and send back the products. Losing 10% of whatever you bought from the company is well worth not having to deal with the frustration of leaving.

  8. Do you know how many consultants wouldn’t allow this to go past the first step? All of them! Not one would give a Director her time or energy because, at that point, they’re already sick of the business and know they don’t want to get pushed into anything (again) by her. My biggest frustration with this kind of teaching is that all those struggling Directors will think it’ll work, take more time away from their lives to try it. In all the letters I sent to quitting consultants, I think only 1 actually kept her inventory and didn’t send it back. Such a waste of time.

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