Written by Raisinberry
If you have been in Mary Kay for any length of time you are aware of a typical meeting involving a “scoreboard line up” of top sellers in your unit. The count up begins for what was sold, and generally anybody over $300 gets to come down front and tell their sales success. $300 a week in sales is supposedly a Sapphire Star Consultant, provided she ordered 1800.00 wholesale during the quarter.
The problem is, there are very few real business women in Mary Kay. Your Director will have you split your sales 60/40 as if that ratio has anything to do with actual accounting. You will note that even a weekly summary sheet does not track your real expenses and real profit. No, you are to record your 60/40 split as if the number remaining from the subtraction of your restocking amount reflected your actual profit. Nothing could be further from the truth.
In real business, the cost of doing business, every dime, is factored into its profitability picture. Mary Kay knows you will do such little business that real tracking of expenses against profit is futile. That’s why classes that are supposed to teach Money Management, are actually thinly disguised attempts to teach you to have full inventory, get all your Mk Debt on one credit card or loan, and pay it off with one set payment every month. This is taught as simple business management. Here’s the problem.
Your expenses continue. Your need to order new merchandise continues. If you are serious about your business, you will be at every meeting, every Career Conference, Every Leadership Advance, Every Pacesetters, Red Jacket Rally, Seminar, Pizza and Possibilities, Muffins and Makeovers, Meatloaf and Marketing, Omelets and Opportunities, ad infinitum.
You have start up inventory debt that hasn’t been cleared. You have reordering debt that hasn’t been cleared. You have Travel and Event debt that hasn’t been cleared, and accounting for all of it and the interest you are paying is a nightmare.When pressure comes to add more to it, like for finishing STAR Consultant or hanging on to Car Qualifications, you swallow hard, get a sick stomach and rationalize that soon you will be a Director and pay it all off.
So since we are no longer willing to live in denial, let’s take a hard look at real profit and loss for one month…and I won’t pick July. Let’s take October.
Don’t glaze over…I know numbers make you nuts…but that’s why you are in this mess. I’ll keep it “general”.
Monthly sales: (Example of a typical scenario)
Week one – 317.80 sold
Hostess losses ($75 for $25 coupon) – costs you $12.50
Section 2- $5.00
Cost of inventory – 190.30
¼ of internet & website $1.00
Meeting fee- $4
Product giveaway for guests- $10
1/52 of PCP yearly costs $4
Interest on your Credit card debt (big range here, could be as high as $20 depending on your rate- Lets say $12 divided by 4)
TOTAL COSTS = 237.80
You Sold 317.80 and it COST you in reality, $237.80. You made $80.00
But now it’s time for Fall Retreat, and your ticket price is $40 to $100 depending on where it’s held.
Next week, You attempt to repeat a $300 week, but you class postpones. Some of your costs are fixed. You still have meeting fee, PCP, Interest, web , travel and if you give your guest a gift, that cost too. If you didn’t sell anything, you are now in the hole.
Week Three- You sell 500.00! Part of it contained that $400 roll up for $299.You made 99.00 on that roll up, (NOT $200 because you discounted it…) less, Hostess gift=$12.50, samples, $5, Travel, $5. You made another 200.00 from a double facial, lost some samples and product at $5 and of course your “gift with purchase for the 2 of them at $7. Now add your “fixed costs” for the week, meeting, PCP, web, interest, travel…
Week Four- Back to $250 in sales. All the same costs apply.
At month end we can also add what you gave away in warm chatter samples, Interviews that involved you picking up the tab, Other “fees” for Saturday trainings or marketing sessions, and your next wholesale order! Are you restocking ONLY what you sold?
Chances are you are not! There’s new product to try, items you think you need more of, and so you charge.
Here are your sales for the month= $ 1067.
If you think like a Mary Kay consultant and not a business woman, you tell yourself you have 60% to order! Wow that’s a $600 wholesale. Only a $600 wholesale costs you over $800 in shipping and taxes. Having $600 to spend means Your ORDER is $400! Not $600!
Based on this woman’s real expenditures, Does she have $467 in profit? If she discounted ANYTHING during the month, she has no idea what her real amount of profit is, and if she doesn’t count real costs, she is digging herself into a hole that will consume her.
The money to run your “business” comes from somewhere. It doesn’t materialize out of a hat. And every week that you don’t sell at least $300 is costing you big time. Add all the “nothing is mandatory” but you better go, events… and you are frankly, screwed.
Mary Kay has been playing “Big Girl’s in Business” for over 40 years. In 14 years, 11 as a Director, I never had a money management training class that talked actual cost and profitability, factoring debt and inventory management, and what obsolete product really costs us. When has what you have lost in product changes, packaging changes, and upgrades EVER been discussed?
And what has your TIME been worth? If a $300 week gets you $80 before your have your non mandatory events to pay for…what was your time worth? Meeting 2 hours, Class 3 hours, Saturday’s “Crustacions and Career Path”- 2hours, plus calling, confirming and coaching…
Get the real picture? Now the accountants of this forum will be irritated that I didn’t spell it out exactly, but I want my words to resonate for the non-accountant mind. What does your logic and observation tell you? Are you in fact BETTER OFF financially for being in Mary Kay, or is the whole picture much more dire?
We can hope that some have broken even, but the vast majority are paying big time for this dive into “executive income for part time hours”.
Mary Kay Cosmetics prospers on our ignorance, hopes and dreams. This Corporation is the quintessential opportunist, which, because it will not admit that these charges are true, will never cease to fuel the tide of antagonism against it.