Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Amway ""Partner" Stores And The. BBB??

I recently saw comments on this blog from an apparent Amway defender. The comments extolled the virtues of Amway partner stores such as Nike and Apple. To be honest, I don't know if Amway actually partners with Nike and Apple but let's say they do. What does the partner store designation mean? All it means is that Amway IBOs get to list Apple and Nike stuff in their catalogues. If they manage to sell any Nike or Apple stuff, they get a commission paid by NIe or Apple through Amway. But of course, because of the IBO bonuses and because Amway needs to make some money on the transaction, the prices of Nike and Apple products in the Amway catalogue cannot compare (in general) to to big retailers or even Internet shops like Amazon.com.

Assuming that Nike and Apple are truly Amway "partners", they have a one sided partnership. Nike and Apple don't do anything for Amway IBOs except to allow them to sell their products for premium prices on a commission only basis. Meaning is nothing gets sold, Nike and Apple do not have to compensate anyone. It's a no brainer for Nike and Apple. If people sell your stuff for top prices, you pay a commission but if they sell nothing, you pay nothing. It's a great deal for Nike and Apple, again, assuming they really are Amway "partners". Heck, if JoeCool made "I hate Amway" stickers and Amway wanted to be my partner, I would do it too. Nothing to lose and much to gain.

Now, about the BBB. I don't know what Amway's rating actually is because they could be "A' rated in Michigan for example, and not "A" rated in Arizone. The rating has a lot to do with Amway dealing with complaints to the BBB. If they deal with complaints, then they might get a good rating. However, many people are sponsored by friends and family and simply do not register complaints about Amway even if they had a bad experience. But even if they registered, it was likely against an LOS (Line of sponsorship) such as BWW (Britt Worldwide) or WWDB (WOrld Wide Dream Builders) or N21 (Network21). These are for profit third party companies designed to help recruit and train Amway IBOs and who profit even if Amway IBOs lose their shirts. Often these groups are not rated with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Individual Amway IBOs who do bad and unethical things are also not registered with the BBB so their bad behavior would not be rated by the BBB.

Why do you suppose Amway has such a bad name reputation while their IBOs brag about Amway's alleged BBB reputation? IBOs and their training companies are not Amway. It's very possible that Amway would not approve of the things done by individual IBOs or the training groups but Amway for too long (in my opinion) has profited because of the bad behavior of the lines of sponsorship and the bad behavior of individual IBOs who they claim they can't control. Perhaps if Amway cannot contain the bad behavior, they should not be allowed to profit from this bad behavior and should be fined or have restrictions imposed upon them like Herbalife did last year.

I believe I have thoroughly debunked the partner store and BBB myth, but I'm sure Amway IBOs and defenders will be back to raise the issue again soon. LOL

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Why Focus On Recruiting?

What does the HR department is a company do? Recruit? THat's what I was told when a diamond speaker was trying to downplay the fact that so many Amway IBOs are focused on recruiting. If you've ever been accosted by a zealous and probably new Amway IBO, you'll probably know what I"m talking about. Newly sponsored IBOs often have the motivation and zeal to try to recruit anyone and everyone they know. They are trying to achieve what upline has told them is needed to accomplish their "dreams". Afterall, nobody is going diamond or even platinum without an army of downline right?

BUt upon closer inspection, you can see the real problem. I mean if I as an IBO could simply sell tons of products for a profit, then my focus doesn't have to be on recruiting, but simply on sales. But over the years, I've unsuccessfully challenged IBOs and Amway defenders to name 1 or 2 people who has sizable Amway businesses sustained primarily by sales and not by recruiting an army. Of course, nobody has even been able to give me an answer. AN\nd that's because Amway products are generic in nature but premium in prices. It makes it a tough sell when your friends and family can get far more product and value at a retailers at a a fraction of the cost of Amway products. Try doing an open minded price comparison and you'll easily see what I mean.

For these reasons, upline developed the concept of buy from yourself and get others to do the same. People generally do not like selling things anyway so it makes sense that a concept of buying from your own store makes the Amway business seem more palatable to the masses. Of course the problem with this method is that you end up focusing on recruiting and you've turned Amway into a pyramid scheme. Look at the recent FTC vs. Herbalife. They found that a majority of sales were not made to actual customers but appeared to be made to the distributors themselves. Herbalife is required to tracked these sales now and it's yet to be seen how this FTC injunction will impact Herbalife long term.

But if you're a prospect or an IBO and focused on recruiting, then you are likely doing so because you too, are unable to sell Amway products just like all the critics claim. Oh, I've heard stories of people having hoards of customers but nobody has ever shown evidence of such nobody can answer why the "diamonds" seemingly have large groups of downline "buyin for themselves". Like the mysterious "Amway retireees" that no one can identify, nobody has been able to identify a few successful and sustainable Amway businesses that relies on product sales primarily. It's because the majority of groups are basically focused on recruiting and running pyramid schemes.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

The Amway Scam?

Before I signed up to join Amway, I was invited to see "the plan" at an open meeting. The speaker seemed to make sense about running a business to make money and how you and make money and save money by being involved with Amway. Except that he misrepresented the Amway experience. The speaker said you save 30% of good by shopping with Amway, which is a lie. You can save 30% shopping with Amway if you pay the distributor price instead of suggested retail, except that the distributor price is much more expensive (on average_ than paying for the same or similar products at a retailer like Costco to WalMart. Anyone who does an honest price comparison can easily see that this is true. WalMart buys from the manufacturer and adds their markup and sells to you. Amway does the same but they "generously" pay a 30+ % bonus to IBOs and that bonus is included in the prices thus Amway has to charge much more than a WalMart or Costco to cover the bonuses.

Then the "scam" comes in. The diamonds and bigshots in Amway say "anyone" can go diamond, get rich and walk the beaches of the world while getting wealthy beyond belief. And all you need to do it subscribe to their teaching system consisting of voicemail, books, CDs and seminars/functions. Join and subscribe and do what you're advised and you're nearly assured of success. It's a lie. There is ZERO evidence that the system helps anyone succeed. Upline will say everyone who succeed is on the system. While that might be true, there are millions of people on the same system who fail. It's like saying everyone who wins the lottery has a ticket while disregarding the millions of people who get on the system and fail. People fail because the Amway compensation plan is designed that way. The multi level compensation plan assure a majority of failures.

So the Amway business has people joining in the hopes of riches but they are basically chasing the end of a rainbow. You can see it and chase it but you will never get it. Looks at the diamonds in the US. Some of them died while still working and some got divorced. But the vast majority of Amway diamonds are the same old diamonds from the 1990's and there are very few new diamonds. If the system actually worked, new diamonds would be churning out regularly but they aren't. And they can't right now because Amway sales from 2014 to now is down about 25%. Amway went from 11.8 billion to 8.8 billion last Amway fiscal year. Without new virgin ground to exploit, Amway is saturating and shrinking.

Overall Amway is a scam in my opinion. They sell false hopes and false dreams under the guise of running a low overhead business amd then the diamond turns around and sells useless tools that only help the diamonds. The success is not there. The "fruit on the tree" that some diamonds used to talk about is not there. In my opinion, Amway is just a big scam run by diamonds so they can make their fortunes selling tools. I welcome and dare anyone to prove me wrong.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Amway/WWDB Teaching?

A comment that was left on one of my blogs regarding Amway and WWDB. Hopefully reading this comment will help some people, and entertain others:

My husband wasn't abusive when we met and were first married. That started happening maybe six months after we were married.

He was already in Amway when we met, but he wasn't very active. After we got married, he started to get more active in "the business."

I didn't know much about Amway when I met him. I met his upline sponsors when we got engaged and I thought they were just good friends. After we were married, I went to a rally and was struck by how the wives seemed to be so supportive. Then I heard the Emerald wife speak, and all she did was edify her husband or go on to "us gals" that we needed to let go of any negativity. As I went to more functions, I heard the wives tell "us gals" to be submissive - that we were wrong for having any needs or requests. It's one of the kids' birthday or your birthday and there's a function? Guess which one takes priority. You can celebrate later when you're "Free," when you're a Diamond.

I thought there would be some sales training. I went to an Artistry clinic - they taught us how to put on makeup and showed us some of the latest colors. But there was nothing about how to find customers, generate sales, or even have a makeup party. At one time, there was a tape by Bettyjean Brooks (wife of Jim Brooks, WWDB) about how to build a retail business. I ordered it, but never received it. She and Jim divorced. Jim stayed in WWDB and the tape suddenly became "unavailable."

Husband really followed the "fake it 'til you make it" teaching. To everyone, he was Mr. Successful. After our child was born, I became a stay at home mother. He led everyone to believe that it was our Amway income that allowed me to stay home. We weren't even at 1500 PV. We never made any money. I kept my mouth shut and played the submissive/supportive wife role. Keeping the books, running call-in and pickup for our downline, and trying to peddle the products to "customers." He never tried to sell anything - that was the wife's job. WWDB taught that.

It all came to a head when the police got involved because of the abuse. He had to move out of our house. He lied to everyone, saying that it was all really nothing and that the courts (and I) were blowing everything out of proportion. After going through counseling and therapy, it was clear to me (and to the therapist) that he was not being honest with any of us. I filed for divorce.

It was then that the upline contacted me. Our sponsor (the wife), platinum and emerald each called me. It started out that they were "concerned" about me and wanted to counsel me. When I told them exactly what happened and why I was leaving, they told me that it was "unbiblical" for me to leave my husband. Yelling at me. Accusing me of negativity. They also said that there was no way he could have done those things, that they just couldn't believe it. I offered to let them see a copy of the police report. Nobody ever took me up on that offer.

Now, I can't say that Amway taught him to be abusive, but I wholeheartedly believe they taught him to be a good liar and how to hide the truth and dodge questions. They did everything short of preach that the "little lady" stay at home, pregnant and in the kitchen. Wives on stage used to brag about how the couple drove a hundred miles and left their kids sleeping in the car while they went inside someone's house to show a plan.

Freedom, indeed. More like servitude.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

After A Few Months Of Amway?

I send this message to inform IBOs that they should be aware of their circumstances in their Amway business. What are your expenses and income like? What I mean is when you are a new IBO, it is common for you to buy/sell your 100 PV, and perhaps listen to some cds. If you basically did what your sponsor or upline advised, you made your 100 PV bonus level and you will receive a bonus from Amway for about $10 or so. If you did as advised by your upline/sponsor, then you likely made a namelist and started contacting some potential business partners aka prospects. You're probably a bit excited because things are going as you hoped. You did your part and a bonus is on it's way to your doorstep. Heck, you may have even sponsored a friend or relative because of your newly found excitement and enthusiasm.

But what happens after a few months have passed? If you are still doing 100 PV and have no downline, then what are the chances that you will ever achieve anything? Your excitement is wearing off and now the Amway opportunity is becoming "work". You are also starting to notice that it is starting to get expensive to continue to purchase products, many of which you never purchased before. For example, were you buying cases of energy drinks and "high end" vitamins before Amway? Did you buy $50 cases of bottled water before Amway? Supposedly their laundry soap and other cleaners are highly concentrated, therefore your main consumables are the nutrition/vitamin products.

Even if you managed to find some downline, are they duplicating what you do? Are they also moving volume and sponsoring downline? If not, what are your chances of fulfilling the 6-4-2 plan or some similar version of it. When I saw the plan, I thought it was reasonable and I was on my way to platinum. What I discovered though, is that as you progress, upline has greater expectations of you and that includes more tool purchases. (I was in WWDB). In the end, my recommended tool purchases ate up any profits I had and at the 4000 level, I was just about breaking even, which means I was at a loss when factoring in my time spent and other miscellaneous expenses such as gas money, etc, not to mention the time spent trying to build the business.

Where are you at? If you're been in for more than a year, are you on schedule to become platinum or are you at 200 PV with one downline? Maybe you have a small group with 600 PV? You still aren't close to a net profit. For the vast majority of people, success is not right around the corner. What's around the corner for most is more time lost, more money expended, and no profits. If your group is not growing each and every month, you are sliding backwards. If you don't constantly have new IBOs coming into the group, you are probably stagnant. With about half of IBOs dropping out each year, keeping a group together is a tremendous task.

IBOs, where are you at after a few months? Where are you at after a year? If you haven't gone platinum, it is nearly a certainty that it will never happen, despite what your upline might say. The facts are there, it's a matter of whether you want to believe it or not.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Complaints About Amway?

Over the years, I have seen literally hundreds (if not more) blogs and testimonials about Amway. Most of them decry the pitfalls of being an Amway IBO. Most of the complaints cite the fact that Amway in general has higher prices than comparable retailers and the fact that the system consisting of voicemail, books, cds and seminars ate up any profits the IBO may have made and resulted in net losses for most. One particular Amway apologist bemoans the fact that the internet is full of bad testomonials about Amway. The reason why there are so many negative testimonials about Amway is because over the years, thousands, possibly millions either had a bad experience for the reasons I cited above, or personally know of someone who had a bad experience in Amway.

Amway defenders will often cite the fact that many IBOs sign up and "do nothing" as their defense to this. But I will easily point out that I haven't seen anyone say they signed up, failed to do anything or order products, quit and started blogging about a bad experience in Amway. These defenders will also compare Amway to the gym where people sign up and "do nothing". Whether true or not, I also do not see people who sign up and "do nothing" complain about not receiving health benefits by simply signing up for the gym. It is a very weak defense. Conversely, I have seen numerous accounts of folks like myself who did put in effort, some for many years, who did what upline advised and did not see the financial rewards that is promoted in "the plan".

Amway defenders will then try to justify themselves, saying that the better business bureau (BBB) receives few formal complaints about Amway. I will agree with this. Many IBOs never bother to file formal complaints to the BBB or to Amway because in many, probably most cases. The person who quits and may have had a bad experience, was sponsored into the business like by a friend or family member of the IBO. Many will simply leave and forget the episode and chalk it up to a learning experience in life. Some will complain, but really have to no venue to voice their remorse about joining. Some of us have found the internet to be quite effective in sharing our experiences and our opinions on why the business did not work. This is what one Amway defender calls the "internet war". What I have pointed out is that critics most often simply point out what the IBOs themselves have done. In many cases, the IBO is his own worst enemy. Afterall, critics didn't deny Amway was what they were deceptively pitching, nor did critics make up claims about Amway productsm etc. It wasn't critics who lied to someone to get them to see the Amway plan. In most cases. bad IBO behavior contributes to bad Amway experiences.

It would appear that most of the problems has a root in the AMO systems, such as WWDB, BWW, LTD, or N21. Now, not all upline leaders are unethical, but it appears that most are, and new IBOs have no way to identify the good from the bad. It also appears that some of these upline leaders will issue bad avice. Advice that is detrimental to the IBOs, but financially beneficial to themselves. Such as telling IBOs to never miss a function, or to buy more cds, regardless of any IBO's profitability potential. In many cases, these unethical uplines do not care about IBO success. Their goal is just to move as many support materials as possible, so they can fund their "diamond" lifestyle. Sadly, it is also apparent that the diamond lifestyle may be a facade in many cases. An illusion of wealth portrayed as a recruiting tool.

If you recognize some of these warning signs, ask tough questions of your potential sponsor and visit this or some of the blogs linked to this one for more information.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

CORE - Designed For Failure?

Amway leaders often refer to CORE as their steps to ensure that an IBO will succeed. But in my informed opinion, CORE will guarantee failure. Here's a breakdown of CORE and why it doesn’t work. Here are the CORE steps. Some groups may have variations of CORE, but this is generally what many groups use:

1 - Show the Plan (10-15 per month)
2 - Retail the Products (10 customers @10 PV each)
3 – Tapes/cds
4 - Books
5 - Functions (attend all)
6 - Accountability
7 - Counsel with Upline (Be teachable!)
8 - Buy 100% of your own products
9 – Communikate

Many upline will tell you that your success is nearly 100% guaranteed if you follow these steps for 2-5 years. Some Amway enthusiasts will tell you that 6 months of this activity will nearly assure you of a platinum level business. Certain steps are within the IBO’s control, such as reading every day and listening to cds, and attending functions. It is also easy enough to be accountable, counsel with upline, buy your own products, and use KATE (voicemail).

Here’s where an IBO’s efforts will break down. Showing the plan and retailing products. And remember, if you cannot do these steps then you are not considered “CORE” and your upline will likely tell you that it is your own fault and that you simply haven’t been CORE, therefore you did not achieve success. There is some truth in this but let me expose the system in a different angle.

Amway has a spotty reputation in the US. I don’t think anyone can dispute this fact. Therefore, for the vast majority of people, being able to show the plan 10-15 times per month is a nearly impossible task. If you are able to do this, you are a really good salesman or a good liar. In this scenario, the IBO is already successful, but not because of CORE, but simply because the IBO has the gift of being able to convince people into seeing the plan. But for many IBOs, they may contact hundreds of people and not be able to get anyone to see the plan. Even IBOs who follow upline advice on how to contact will probably not be able to show 10-15 plans per month. Thus this IBO, who is doing the work, will not be able to succeed. The system will blame the IBO, but the reality is that the IBO has too big of a disadvantage to overcome.

Secondly, with high prices (on average) and with a spotty reputation, most IBOs are unable to retail products. Thus most IBOs are unable to sell products, therefore they are not CORE, therefore upline will blame the IBO for failure.

What if an IBO contacts 1000 people and cannot get 10 people to see the plan? Upline will claim that IBO is not CORE and therefore it is personal failure of the IBO. IMO, the only reason why upline can claim that CORE works is because in order to do the CORE steps consistently, you have to already be at a certain level of success. The vast majority of IBOs cannot and will never be able to reach that level.

That is the myth and the deception that many uplines will use to attract recruits. That each IBO can do the CORE steps. When only a fraction of 1% ever reach the level of platinum or higher, the numbers strongly support what is written here. Apologists are welcome to try and prove me wrong, but they can't.