MLM as an Alternative Income Source – Part 3

Today’s blog post is the third and final of the multi-level marketing mini series. It’s written by my friend, Emily, who I’ve known since we played travel volleyball together in the 10th grade. Emily has been doing Mary Kay for several years now and provides her very raw opinion of her experience.

When I started Mary Kay I was a young wife and mother living away from all of my family and friends. My daughter was 1-year-old and my husband was working a job that he hated. For 8 months I kept saying “no” to a friend of mine about joining Mary Kay.  I couldn’t stand sales people and I knew nothing about makeup (I grew up with 3 older brothers). Despite a hundred reasons to not do it my husband continually encouraged me to try it. I was looking for friendships and definitely some extra income, so I did!

Immediately when I joined Mary Kay I found a place to make a ton of new friends and reach for some pretty huge goals. Initially I was planning on just making an extra $50 a week and I’d be thrilled with that. However, I was continually “encouraged” to do more, earn more, reach for more, recruit more, sell more… After 8 months I earned my very first Mary Kay car (after working extremely late nights and driving hundreds of miles for potential recruits). The same day I earned my car I became a brand new Sales Director. I had recruited so many people that I earned a very prestigious award for being in the top of the company for recruiting. At that point, I was earning a full-time income from Mary Kay.

The same month I earned my car, became a Sales Director and had nearly 100 people on my team, I had my second baby. This is when everything changed. I went through so much that year- it was the hardest year of my life. I won’t get into the details, but long story short I ended up being politely asked to “step down” from my position because I missed the quota for a Sales Director two months in a row. Here I am 4 years later with no Mary Kay career, but I wouldn’t change a thing. Along the way I learned some very valuable lessons about myself and my family that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. I learned about myself as a wife and mom, owning a business, how to dream again, I made countless friendships and the list goes on.

If you’re thinking about starting your own Mary Kay business here are 3 important things to keep in mind:

Inform yourself about what to expect. I had no idea that as soon as I signed my Beauty Consultant agreement I would be asked to invest money into inventory. Do I think it’s smart to have inventory on hand? Absolutely! I just didn’t know that was coming. I was uneducated about what to expect. You’ll be encouraged to buy inventory along the way. It is also crucial to remember that you have to be responsible with taking out taxes from your income! This ended up costing my husband and I a LOT of money.Decide what you want out of your new business right away. At first I just wanted to make some extra gas money every week. I was “gently pushed” to go for more right away. In all fairness though I wanted more for myself as well. If you decide to go for Directorship know that it is a full-time job. It requires full-time hours just like a traditional 9-5 job.A small percentage of people actually make it to the top. Can you be one of that 2-3% of people who make it to the highest level? Definitely! It will honestly take years of consistency and working your butt off, but you can do it! Another thing you need to know is that consultants are very big on pointing out “no quotas” to their potential recruits. This isn’t necessarily true. There are some small quotes for consultants to stay in the company. Once you get to a certain level there absolutely is a quota. After years of working my butt off I was forced to step down as a Sales Director because I couldn’t meet it. I was dealing with my husband’s job loss, Postpartum Depression after I had my second baby, a major car accident, etc! Mary Kay corporate didn’t sympathize and took my job from me because I couldn’t keep up. Now that I look back years later that ended up being a blessing for me. Keep in mind you are working for someone else. They can take your title away from you just like a boss can in the corporate world.

With that being said I’m all for women doing something fun to get out of the house and earn some extra shopping money. I believe a lot of research online can help you make a well-informed decision. I still service my amazing customers with their products (courtesy of a lot of investments haha) and it’s great extra income to this day. Don’t let anyone pressure you to join. It’s ultimately up to you. Do what your gut tells you and take your time to think about it.

Thanks for reading! If you have any questions for Emily, comment below and I’ll send them to her to answer.