Darrell Overcash, President of U.S. operations for Mary Kay Inc. sent this letter to the national sales directors in October 2006, warning them about Pink Truth. If you’d like to see the original document, here are page 1, page 2, and page 3.
The cover sheet of the fax from Darrell Overcash to the national sales directors:
Please read this letter in its entirety and feel free to use the information as you respond to any inquiries that you may receive. However, please do not copy or re-distribute the letter in any way. I would prefer that it not apear on any negative websites too!
Thank you and warm regards,
And the letter itself:
October 11, 2006
Dear Independent National Sales Director,
There are times when we need to use caution in what we communicate so that in addressing the concerns of a few, we do not inadvertently create more alarm with those who were contently unaware. Yes, sometimes ignorance is bliss, and this is one of those times. I have hesitated in sending you anything on this because if you are not aware, I certainly don’t want to worry you. However, as Independent National Sales Directors, you need to be aware that there are some negative “blogs” about Mary Kay on the Internet.
Please read this letter, but use caution in how you communicate the message any further. While you should feel free to use this information to address concerns if you hear them, I ask that you do not send mass e-mails to inform those who are not already aware of the sites because it will only generate unnecessary concern.
You may have heard about Web sites that have given people who appear to be disgruntled members of our independent sales force, both former and current, the opportunity to air their complaints. The sites, or “blogs,” contain stories, opinions and message boards all claiming to reveal “the real truth” about Mary Kay Inc. and its independent sales force. Unfortunately, Web sites like these are not uncommon for large corporations with millions of consumers operating in a country that values the freedom of speech.
How should we respond to the hurtful comments posted on these sites? We only need to ask ourselves one question: What would Mary Kay do? The answer is clear. She’d ignore the negative and redouble her efforts on the positive. In fact, I would recommend that you not visit these sites at all, even to satisfy your own curiosity. I further recommend that you discourage anyone in your Area from visiting these sites for two reasons. First, there is nothing positive to gain by reading the blogs. Why waste your valuable time reading such negative, false and upsetting exchanges when you can and should spend your time on positive endeavors? Second, because the life of any Web site is largely dependent upon the number of visitors it receives, we certainly don’t want to be unintentional contributors to their success.
As leaders within the Mary Kay independent sales force, the sisters to whom Mary Kay Ash entrusted her legacy,you and your Area members have the opportunity to share with others the truth about your own experiences. Consider all of the positive press we receive on a daily basis. Regardless of how many negative entries appear on these blogs, the Mary Kay philosophy remains just as strong and as relevant to women today as it was in 1963 when she founded her Company. And it’s not difficult to see why. The Company encourages us to live a balanced life following the Golden Rule and Go-Give spirit. With 1.6 million Independent Beauty Consultants sharing their “I” stories around the world, we simply have too much to celebrate and no time to engage in the kind of negativity these sites attempt to perpetuate.
If your sales directors are unsure about the information posted on these blogs and have questions, please encourage them to call our dedicated customer service number (1-800-MARY-KAY), where a representative will be happy to address their concerns. Consistent with the Web Site Guidelines for Independent National Sales Directors and Independent Sales Directors, we also remind you to ensure that your personal area web sites are password-protected. Passwords make it more difficult for photos and other personal information to be copied from your site and posted on another site without your consent, and provide more privacy for the information you choose to share with your unit members online. To review our Web Site Guidelines for Independent National Sales Directors and Independent Sales Directors, go to Learn MK and enter “legal” in your key word search.
Mary Kay once said, “The important thing to remember is that we live in a negative world, and there will always be those who think it can’t be done. Remember our meager beginning? I was told by everyone it couldn’t be done, but I didn’t listen. Aren’t you glad I didn’t? Thousands of women around the world today are basking in the glory of Mary Kay Inc.”
I believe blogging sites will remain on the Internet for quite a while, but I’m confident that with time, these sites targeting Mary Kay will be rendered meaningless, while our principles and culture will remain as strong as ever. Thank you for continuing to be the inspiration and motivation of our independent sales force. Please let me know if you have any questions.
I appreciate the fact that Darrell called us liars, because statements like that ONLY HELP OUR CAUSE. The more he tries to pooh-pooh the very REAL experiences of the women here, the more he validates the importance of what we’re doing. Thanks again, Darrell.