At the beginning of every seminar year (July 1), Mary Kay rolls out new promotions. You’ll notice that the promotions are never about what you SELL, but only about what you ORDER from Mary Kay Inc.
The sales directors will tell you that’s because corporate can’t possibly track actual sales to customers, so this is their only way to reward consultants. And you shouldn’t order unless you’re selling anyway, they’ll probably say. Except during the year when they need production to finish a car or a level or some incentive, then the sales director will twist your arm to place an order (knowing darn well you won’t be able to sell those products).
Back when I was in Mary Kay (20 years ago!), they introduced “Consistency Club.” It was a way to get consultants to order every month, whether they needed it or not. “You don’t want to miss this month… you’re 3 months into your Consistency Club.”
In Mary Kay, units live or die by new recruits who order large inventory packages (that’s called frontloading a consultant). Those large orders are what meet the monthly minimums and the car production requirements. The orders from existing consultants are the “extra.” Odds are that the order placed by the new consultant will be the most she’ll ever order in Mary Kay. Most times, if a new consultant places an order of $1,800, she may place a couple more small orders, then she’ll be out of money or credit, won’t be able to sell the products already on the shelf, and she’ll quit. So the key for the director is to get that initial inventory order to be as large as possible, thus supporting the unit production that is needed of the month.
But there are consultants who hang on for months or years, placing little orders here or there. Consistency Club is a way to coax additional orders out of them. Below is the flyer for the next six months (July to December). If you order at least $600 wholesale each month ($3,600 total), you’ll get the key necklace. It’s supposed to be a badge of honor to wear that necklace at MK events and show everyone that you did completed a company challenge.
This necklace is something that MK is probably paying about $10 to $15 for, if not less. Let that sink in for a moment. A consultant orders $3,600 of product (probably much of it unneeded), and is given a $10 or $15 prize in return. That’s nonsense.
I know, I know. The Kaybot response is “you’re not supposed to order if you’re not selling” and “this prize is just something extra on top of all the money you made from selling those products.” Hogwash. The challenge is about ordering, not selling. And the actions of the directors contradict their statements about not ordering if you’re not selling, because they will certainly twist your arm to order when they need production, and they won’t give a darn if you’re selling or not.