A $30,000 Mary Kay Raise???

This is the latest email being circulated in Mary Kay… a sales director claiming a $30,000 “raise” in 2008 from Mary Kay. That sounds exciting, doesn’t it? Take a look at the email this director sent, and then read my comments at the bottom. Since she identified herself and the email is circulating so widely, I’ll identify her as well… The sales director is Amy Kemp .

I had a full and exciting Mary Kay day today – a great double facial with a booking for a class in February, two great 3-way interviews with Erika and Yvonne, and a fabulous debut with Sarah’s new team member, Anna!  Got home from dinner with the kids and Ryan tonight and opened our mail to find my W2 form from Mary Kay corporate.

I looked at that sheet with disbelief for a moment.  This year, my total income (includes prizes, trip, and car) from Mary Kay was just about $130,000.  Whew.  Looked up last year and it was just at $100,000 – remember how excited I was to be a six-figure woman at last in 2007!?!?!?

I got a $30,000 raise last year – wow.

$30,000 is a lot, especially in the midst of an economic recession.
Don’t know many people who got a $30,000 raise last year, do you?
That’s incredible to me.
Thank God that we took a chance when we did and really invested in this business.

I don’t know – maybe I’m tired from a long week of work, so that makes me a little more reflective.. .I know it’s not all about the money we earn, but for my family, the money pays for some very important things – private school tuition for 2 kids, groceries, all of our utilities and household expenses, investments for our future, vacations for our family, insurance (Reed keeps us FULLY insured in EVERY AREA!!).  I am a MAJOR income provider for my family, and I’m always completely honest that sometimes, that load feels heavy.

Sometimes, I think it’d be nice to just have a “normal” job as a teacher or to have a husband who earned so much money that it didn’t matter what I did…but then I know that I would be CRAZY in those roles too.  God created me to lead, and to build something BIG that can impact thousands and thousands of lives.  And the more influence I earn, the more I am compensated.  I’m WORTH that $130,000 and as I grow, even MORE, gosh darn it!  (:  I also can’t believe that my W2 for my last year as a teacher said something like $40,000…this year, if I were still teaching, I’d probably earn $45,000.  Wow.

Then I think of the other benefits like if I was still teaching, there would be no church small group on Tuesday mornings which has totally enriched and changed my life.  I couldn’t pick my kids up from school and drop them off.  I would have to call someone if I was sick or the kids were sick.  There would be no trips to Pheonix or Dallas or Germany .  There would be no events that challenge me to grow as a leader and a woman, into the person God created me to be.  There would only be mundane work, not awful work, but no mountain top experiences like I get to have in Mary Kay.  I wouldn’t get to be a part of Erika and her team’s incredible victory today – earning their first Mary Kay car in a year when Erika’s salary in her other job was cut severely due to the economy.  That car will fill a gap for Erika that needs to be filled.  It’s so gratifying to watch her grow as a leader, and in her faith through the experience.  I love being a part of that, you guys.  I wake up early every morning excited about experiences like that!!

So…while it’s not ALL about the money, I sure am grateful to have it.  I often want to scream at all of you – EMBRACE this opportunity.  Run with it.  WORK, WORK, WORK.  Just WORK.  Don’t question or analyze, just DO THE WORK!!!  (:  If I heard any message at our Leadership Conference this year, it’s that in this season of instability in our world, the BEST thing you can do is WORK.  Work with passion and focus and belief.  Worry and studying the problem endlessly on tv, in the paper and in magazines does you no good.  WORK!!!

I did 36 faces this month and 7 interviews (have to make up 3 in February).  I also was gone for a week, was the co-chair of Chicagorama and lived through the endless blizzards all of you did!!  I’m not saying that to brag….I think you know me better than that.  I’m doing that to say to you – do it IN SPITE of your circumstances.  COMMIT to getting it done.  If you didn’t finish 30 faces in January as I know Sarah Sikma, Erika Goodman, Stacey Nieft, Stacie Mroz and I did (am I forgetting anyone?), COMMIT to it!  COMMIT!!!  You CAN get it done, no matter what your life looks like!  You CAN.  But you’ve got to decide.

Alright, I’m rambling now, and it’s time for bed.  I’ve got 2 appointments between church and the super bowl tomorrow night and get this…TWENTY- FOUR APPOINTMENTS on my calendar for February.  I could just jump up and down I’m so excited about that!  (:  Don’t know if I’ve EVER had that many on my books at one time – seriously, never seen a more motivated hostess in my LIFE than right now!!!  Women want our product FREE!!!  It’s so cool!

Love sharing this journey with you guys….thanks so much for you that you contribute to give me this life of my dreams.

Because Mary Kay directors are so prone to stretching the truth about their earnings , the first thing I wanted to do is verify that Amy really had $130,000 on her 1099 from Mary Kay.  Since I didn’t have the 1099, I had to do the next best thing… I went straight to Applause magazine.

I looked at Amy’s production for 2008, and it looks as if her commissions would have totaled about $100,000 for the year. Add to that the value of the Cadillac ($10,800) and the top director trip (about $7,000 per person), and we’re in the range of that $130,000 claimed.

Sounds impressive right? Well, of course, that’s before business expenses. Actual cash-in-hand is $100,000, less business expenses which are likely running her about 20%.

But still Amy has a nice income. Here’s the important part of this though… So few women in Mary Kay ever achieve this level of commissions. Using June 2008 figures from Applause magazine, there are only 63 sales directors with production higher than Amy. (Yes, that means everyone else’s production is lower.)

So while Amy and 63 other directors are making six figure commissions, about 12,937 sales directors are making less than that. How do you feel about a whopping 0.4% (less than 1%) of directors making that six figure “executive” level income? With 600,000 consultants in the United States, and 63 women making more than $100,000 in commissions, that gives us 0.01% making that executive income. (For those who are counting, that means 1 in every 10,000 women make the executive income.)

How do you suppose potential Mary Kay recruits would reac if they were told up front that they had almost no chance of making an executive income in Mary Kay?