Friday, July 31, 2009

Amway - The Merit Of Amway And The Systems?

Amway has been around for a long time. When the company first began, it wasn't uncommon for people to go door to door, perhaps with products in a radio flyer to sell them as a way to make some extra money. There were no extensive training program that I know of and certainly, there wasn't the stigma that the company has now. But in today's world, when people refer to Amway as being a scam, what they usually refering to the motivational leaders and the associated systems. I believe that the systems were first invented as a genuine way to train distance groups, but the income and power of systems seduced some upline leaders into becoming conmen. Thus I believe that many if not most systems are corrupted. I witnessed personally and still hear of stories where IBOs are encouraged to go into debt or sacrifice basic family needs in order to purchase more system materials. Amway's involvement in this is knowing that these abuses occured and not taking any substantial action.

But what are the merits of the program when broken down? Many Amway defenders are quick to point out that many IBOs "do nothing", which may be true, but for the sake of argument, let's not even consider the ones who do nothing. Take the 6-4-2 plan that many use in recruiting. It involves 1 IBO with 78 downline, all of whom do 100 PV. This plan also generally assumes that IBOs will be a part of the system apparently, because non system IBOs generally do not have the dedication to keep moving and selling products. This is because many systems teach IBOs that they are successful when they lose money! In 6-4-2. you have one platinum, allegedly the break even point for system IBOs, and 78 non platinums, spending money on products,and winding up with a net loss, if they are dedicated to the system.

Of course, system expenses vary, depending on which system you are a part of. I have heard IBOs mention that their system expenses may be as low as $75 a month, to over $1000 month for hard core fully dedicated IBOs. I have issued a challenge, which noone has ever undertaken, to shows an actualy platinum group where the collective group made a net profit after system expenses were accounted for. Noone has ever come forward to disprove this point. I believe a retailing group could show a net profit, but I do not believe that a group of prosumers or buy from yourselfers could ever collectively net a profit.

So for Amway IBOs and prospects, please keep in mind that it is the system that is often the downfall of many IBOs. A dedication to any system is very likely to nearly guarantee that you will end up with a net loss as an IBO. Can someone still succeed? Sure, but your chances are similar to that of someone hitting a big jackpot in the lottery.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Amway - Build It And They Will Come?

I recently posted a profit loss summary, provided by one of my loyal readers here, named Gina. It provoked a lot of good discussion and I believe it gave IBOs some good insight about tracking business expenses and business income. However, I have yet to see an IBO who is forthcoming enough to post a similar statement about their Amway business. Now we are not asking for specific details with names or personal information, but what would be so hard about identifying how much their sales and bonuses came out to and how much was spent on functions and other related expenses?

Basically, as was explained on another blog, if the Amway opportunity was as good as IBOs seem to think it is, why is it so hard to get people to see the plan, let alone sponsoring new people? Is it because most IBOs are not actually making a net profit? I would have to guess that if IBOs were actually making a decent net profit, say $200 a month even, that the retention levels in Amway would be much better than what it is now.

So for IBOs, I say build a level os success and prove it. And prove that it is sustainable not only for you, but also your downline. That will be all you need to recruit others. There would be no need to use deception or trickery that IBOs are well known for. When asked if you are making money, you won't have to change the subject and talk about how you are a nicer person or how you are a better husband or wife. You won't have to analyze semantics to spin the conversation away from actual net profits. If you are asked about a profit/loss statement, you can produce one and stand proudly by it as prospects take a look.

People looking to get into business generally care about the bottom line. If your bottom line is a net loss, then you are at a loss as a business. But if you build it, others will come to you to join. This may nto be news, but attending a function or listening to a new standing order is not an income producing activity. Selling products for a profit is. Remember, build it and they will come. Fake it till you make it doesn't work.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Amway - Duplication?

Many IBOs are taught that "duplication" is the key to success in Amway. It is why so many IBOs are deperately trying to sponsor downline. It is why, in my opinion, so many IBOs will use any tactics to get people in front of the plan. I have heard of many zany tricks and deceptive practices by IBOs who are recruiting potential downline.

Unfortunately, even IBOs who are able to sponsor a few run into problems. That problem is retention. Downline come and go with great frequency. Many IBOs come and go because they simply do not make a net profit and they quickly lose interest in "doing the work" for so little reward.

I will agree that duplication can be a vital part of being successful in business. But in real business, an owner will duplicate himeself/herself by hiring employees. The employees perform certain tasks in exchange for a wage or salary, and allows the owner to accomplish certain tasks that he/she cannot do single handedly. If the employee is compensated fairly, they tend to stay, and in jobs where minimum wage is the standard, they often have retention problems and have to hire and train new workers with regularity. It is no different in the Amway opportunity. Those who make money, although the exception, will stay, and the vast majority of IBOs, who make little or nothing despite their efforts, will leave. It is that simple. If IBOs were actually making that extra $200 a month or maybe even an extra $150 net profit, I would guess that they would continue to be in business. But like a real business, when they do not make money, they fold up and do something else, which may be simply working harder at their jobs.

While duplication is a good concept on paper, it doesn't work because not enough IBOs make a net profit. There is no continued interest in staying in a business where they spend more on tools and products than they take in. Groups who focus on the prosumer or buy from yourself concept make it worse for downline as they have little or no sales to add to their bottom line.

If IBOs and prospects would see and understand this concept, they could avoid a lot of pain.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Amway - What Credentials Does Your Upline Leader Actually Have?

I recently read a comment from an Amway zealot on another blog. She mentions that someone's credentials must be considered when looking at information that is presented. I will comment that showing me a sports car or a fancy suit is not proof of financial success.

I find this subject ironic because not one single upline leader, as far as I know, has ever supplied bonafide credentials about themselves. The audience assumes that the person on stage has certain credentials, but do they really? I will say that certainly, if someone is wearing a diamond pin for example, that this person has at least achieved the diamond level as recognized by Amway, but the level may not be current, and the level doesn't indicate the kind of income this person earns from Amway. (Joecool is criticized for being outdated even though I was at 4000 PV at one point in my Amway career)

What many people assume is that the diamonds buy homes and cars in cash, that they wake up at noon every day and participate in leisure activities all day while the cash rolls in. I have heard from some new IBOs, that their upline makes more money taking a crap in the morning than a critic makes in a whole year at a job. That IBO became quiet when some critics offered to take that bet.

But the truth of the matter is that as far as I know, only former diamonds have come clean about their Amway income. They are the only ones who spoke of credentials and accomplishments. Even critics of Amway will often openly speak about their experiences and achieved levels in the business. In the REAL business world, showing business tax returns and credentials are a normal part of doing business. It appears that only in the world of Amway is the supply of credentials and financial statements a big secret. Now I am not suggesting that IBOs or upline leaders should disclose their financials to the entire world, but certainly prospects and some downline should be able to see what their upline is doing financially, especially if that is the basis for purchasing their standing orders and function tickets. And I refer to business (Amway and Tools) income and expenses only, not from other personal sources.

I believe that IBOs and upline leaders do not disclose that information because it would not be beneficial to them. If it were, they would likely publish it freely, just as they flash around copies of checks. IBOs and prospects should take this to heart and ask upline the tough questions.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Amway - Time And Money?

One of the big things that the speaker hit on when I heard the plan was time and money. He said because of the job, you may have money, but not enough time to do what you enjoy. He went onto say that if you have no job, you may have a lot of time, but you'll be broke and won't be able to do what you enjoy. He also said that controlling time and money is essentially financial freedom. This concept appeals to many and makes sense in the big picture of life. Afterall, who wouldn't want to retire early and have enough cash to travel the world and only do fun things?

But the reality is that nearly ever single IBO who registers for the Amway opportunity and the tools system, will never realize this dream. An Amway recruiter may paint a nice picture of how simple the business is, and that you can simply buy products and get others to copy or duplicate you and before you know it, you will be in control of time and money, and live "happily ever after". At one time, I believed it myself.

The more likely case however, will be that the business, including the system of cd's and functions, will cause you to have less time and money. In general, the Amway (and partner store) products costs more than your local big box retailers, and the cost of the systems add up to at least several hundreds of dollars if you are "CORE". Thus ironically, what many seek more of, thend up with less of, because of the business and the related activities. The functions and other educational materials take up valuable time and resources from the IBO and rarely ever results in any kind of significant return on the investment. Most IBOs would be better not never getting involved.

Time and money, think about it. Are you getting more or less of it because of your involvement?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Amway - IBOs and Personal Responsibility?

In my blogging career, I have seen many IBOs mention that their beloved system is basically foolproof. Follow the system and you will "make it". Uplines nearly guarantee that you will succeed if you follow the system. Many IBOs who did not make it blame themselves for failure.

What I find very ironic is how uplines twist the issue of responsibility. What I mean is some of them will stand on stage, possibly in front of tens of thousands of people and proclaim that IBOs should trust upline and do what upline advises, and that will virtually ensure success. Yet if an IBO fails or does not progress in the business, the IBO is held accountable for any failures.

While the Amway business is not a game of chance, a good analogy would be to promote the lottery and tell lottery customers that you have a sure fire way to increase their chance of winning the lottery. For example, your advice may be to select the month of your birthday as one of the lottery numbers, or use the date of your spouse's birthday as a number. Then when the lottery customer loses, you simple say he failed to pick the right numbers. And of course, if that customer wins the lottery, you cite your wise advice as the reason for winning the lottery. In either case you cannot lose.

It is much the same in Amway. Upline will entice prospects to join by showing them fancy homes and cars, and talking about early retirement. Then when a prospect gets excited about these "possibilities", then upline will try to convert that prospect into a customer of the system. Or they will tell the prospect that they can only succeed by using standing order and attending all functions. They say the system is the only way to go. Then if an IBO fails, they blame the IBO.

It's like upline playing a game of heads I win or tails you lose. Think about it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Amway - Big Dreams Unfulfilled?

Many IBOs talk about their big dreams and goals. It is something used by uplines to entice prospects into joining. Financial freedom, early retirement, fancy cars, designer clothing and luxurious vacations. These are many of the dreams that starry eyed IBOs have when they join the Amway opportunity. While it is a good thing to have dreams and goals, I find it somewhat cruel to get people to dream of these things when it is highly unlikely that any of them will attain even a tiny fraction of these goals. Sure, some of the tenured folks in Amway may attain some wealth, but overall, as a whole, IBOs suffer losses when the cost of standing order and functions are factored is.

Amway's numbers indiacte that the average income of an active IBO is $115 a month. Factor in an IBO's time and expenses and in many, possible most cases, there will be a net loss. How do you attain your dreams while suffering a net loss of income? It is unfortunate that some uplines will teach IBOs that they are successful even when that IBO is losing money month after month, almost directly attributable to the cost of the system. All the while, someone upline is seeing their financial goals and dreams fulfilled on the backs of their downline in the form of tool purchases.

The rest of the IBOs end up having their dreams unfulfilled. In many cases, they end up worse off, having lost time and money, and in some cases, friends as they may have shunned their friends and family, casting them off as "broke" or "losers", just because they did not see value in joining the Amway opportunity.

So IBOs, honest question. Are you on track to fulfill your dreams? If you are, can you say the same about your downline? If the answer is no, what is your next step? Your upline may tell you that your key to success is to buy more tools. Be wary and analyze your income versus your expenses. If you are told to ignore these facts, be careful, be very careful.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Amway - Failed IBOs?

On a recent blog post, a frequent reader here and author of his own propaganda pro Amway blog, Levi refers to me (Joecool) as a failed ex Amway IBO. He doesn't qualify his statement, nor apparently has he read my story. My highest level in Amway was 4000 PV. At that level, I didn't make any money, primarily because of the costs of the system. Levi himself admits that he isn't making any net profit, at least in his latest version of his story.

But what exactly is a failed IBO? It goes back to the IBO who quits? Maybe we need to examins why IBOs quit? Maybe earning $10 a month while purchasing $300 worth of expensive goods each month gets tiring? Maybe spending an additonal $200 a month learning to purchase expensive goods gets tiring? Maybe losing money whole being called a winner is tiring? It's funny how IBOs will call others failures when they themselves are not making a profit and will refuse to even talk about the details of their business.

Many people in the US are interested in making an extra buck, but unfortunately, the Amway opportunity is not the most efficient way to do that. The average IBO, according to Amway earns $115 a month, and that is after disregarding inactive IBOs. If not, the average IBO actually earns about $70 a month. But let's use $115 a month. IBOs work about 10 - 20 hours a week if they are "doing the work". Assuming they work 10 hours a week, they earn a whopping $2.87 per hour. If they work harder, maybe 20 hours a week, they earn a hearty $1.43 per hour.

Why IBOs think that quitting this opportunity means failure is a mystery to me. Seems that quitting an opportunity like this is a smart financial move. Seems to me that staying in a system where you lose money or "reinvest" all of your profits for a zero net gain is more of a failure than moving onto a better opportunity.

IBOs and prospects need to simply look at their bottom line, and the answer is clear.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Amway - Here You Go IBOs, A Real Profit Loss Statement

A online friend of mine, Gina, sent me her detailed profit/loss statement from her real business. Names were sanitized of course, but here it is IBOs, a real P/L statement. For some of the naysayers who mistakenly accused Gina and I of being the same person, any moderator at the Qblog forum can verify that we are two very different people from very different places. Gina originally visited by blog seeking information about Quixtar as she has/had an IBO for an employee and wanted to learn about this "business". What she eventually found out was how little so many IBOs know about business. Anyway, at "Levi's" request, here is the P/L:

Here it is...Gina's long awaited P/L

Ordinary Income/Expense
4001 F.R Sales 4,585.18
4002 D. S Sales 2,181,262.78
4003 D.L Sales 384,482.60
4020 Rental Income 405.00
4045 Freight Income 72,751.15
4046 Handling Charge 2,337.15
4099 Sales Returns (376,948.18)
4153 Rebate 473.93
Total Income 2,269,349.61
Cost of Goods Sold
5000 Cost of Goods Sold
5001 F.R Costs 18,894.38
5002 D.S Costs 1,526,418.90
5003 D.L Cost 270,960.60
5043 Freight Costs - Purchases 1,200.00
5045 Freight Costs - Sales 69,848.25
5047 Purchase Discount (36,223.02)
5099 Cost Variance 0.00
5000 Total Cost of Goods Sold 1,851,099.11
Total COGS 1,851,099.11
Gross Profit 418,250.50

6080 Warranty Exp 2,339.07
6100 Misc. Expenses (13.67)
6105 Amortization 501.00
6110 Advertising Expense 19,496.93
6112 Bad Debt 8,837.24
6115 Bank Service Charges 1,204.74
6116 Foreign Exchange Rate Exp 25.16
6120 Business License & Fee 0.00
6125 Credit Report 289.00
6130 Car/Truck Expense
6132 Gas 5,338.71
6134 Registration & License 272.50
6136 Repairs & Maintenance 783.81
6130 Car/Truck Expense - Other 0.00
6130 Total Car/Truck Expense 6,395.02
1640 Conferences and Seminars 952.98
6150 Contribution 100.00
6160 Depreciation Expense 31,289.00
6170 Dues and Subscriptions 1,229.95
6175 Income Taxes
6180 Insurance
6182 Auto Insurance 664.30
6184 General Liability Ins 4,692.65
6185 Health Insurance 31,909.83
6188 Worker's Compensation 2,857.31
Total Insurance 40,124.09
6210 Maintenance/Janitorial 0.00
6220 Marketing Expense 0.00
6230 Office Suplies 3,081.11
6240 Outside Sales Commissions 0.00
6250 Postage and Shipping 1,843.78
6260 Printing and Reproduction 505.09
6270 Professional Fees 0.00
6272 Accounting Fees 14,100.00
6274 Legal Fees 2,450.52
6270 Total Professional Fees 16,550.52
6275 Contract Labor 792.00
6278 Employee Appreciation 97.30
6285 Property Taxes 10,873.55
6290 Rent 0.00
6293 Equipment Rental 1,101.36
6294 Forklift Service
6300 Repairs and Maintenance 6,705.34
6302 Computer Repairs 620.75
6304 Equipment Repairs 185.43
6300 Total Repairs and Maintenance 7,511.52
6306 Alarm System 650.26
6310 Supplies 2,984.11
6315 Small Furniture, Fixture & Equip 1,469.86
6319 Telephone - Cell phones 548.56
6320 Telephone, Fax, & Internet - Landlines 7,980.03
6321 Tools 0.00
6325 Training
6330 Travel & Entertainment
6334 Meals 1,173.58
6336 Travel 14,030.68
6338 Hotel 482.76
6330 Total Travel & Entertainment 15,687.02
6410 Utilities 13,687.01
6560 Payroll Expenses
6561 Salary 125,108.30
6562 Taxes 10,879.95
6563 Payroll Fees 166.11
6560 Total Payroll Expenses 136,154.36
Total Expense 334,287.95
Net Ordinary Income 83,962.55
Other Income/Expense
Other Income
7000 Other Income (201.69)
7200 Interest Income 111.23
7050 Gain on Sale 0.00
7300 Management Fees
7400 Commissions 184,197.60
Total Other Income 184,107.14
Other Expense
8000 Other Expenses 0.00
8010 Accounts Receivable Adjustments 8,791.14
8020 Inventory Adjustment
8030 Accounts Payable Adjustments
8100 Interest Expense 36,557.07
8110 Return Items 44,998.20
Total Other Expense 90,346.41

Net Other Income 93,760.73

Net Income 177,723.28

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Amway - The Fruit On The Tree? What Fruit?

I had a good chuckle recently when some Amway apologists spoke about looking at the "fruit on the tree". One commentator said his parents were broke and he looked to his diamond since the diamond apparently had fruit on the tree. I thought about this concept and I agree, that perhaps we should look at fruit on the tree.

IBOs and Amway prospects, please ask your upline platinum or diamond to show you the fruit on their tree. Ask them to see their (business) financial statements. This is actually a common practice in real business. When a friend of mine sold his business a few years back, he made three year's worth of income tax returns to show prospective buyers.

As far as I know, not one single bigger pin has ever shown their business financials. In fact, if it made certain bigger pins look good, why wouldn't they want to "show their fruit". They certainly don't mind showing off diamond rings, fancy clothes, sports cars and the like. What many IBOs don't understand is that fancy cars and other toys is no evidence of fruit on the tree.

It has been discussed that some diamonds may rent cars or fancy homes and try to imply that they own these items. Some diamonds, possibly many diamonds in the past have lied or embellished the truth about paying for everything in cash, including their homes and cars. They also at times, have given the audience the impression that these luxuries are all purchased with Amway income, and we know that many diamonds have probably had supplemental income from the systems, or other business ventures outside of Amway.

We also know that some diamonds are in debt, but simply try to portray an excessive lifestyle. (See Ruth Carter's Book: Amway Motivational Organizations, Behind the Smoke and Mirrors). Some diamonds may have a substantial income, but it doesn't mean they are financially free and able to live a jetset lifestyle that many portray. It is an illusion, possibly to be able to attract new prospects into the business.

So yes, let us actually see the fruit on the tree. Is there any fruit?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Amway - Building A Business?

When I was an IBO, many people would talk about "building a business". But many folks who spoke about building a business didn't know what that meant. I believe it is because they were taught that building a business meant listening to tapes and attending functions. Or building a business might mean sponsoring others. In my segment of the Amway world, building a business pretty much meant recruiting and showing the plan. Apparently I was mislead and many others were as well.

Building a business, generally speaking means building a customer base. A business moves products and services for a profit. In groups that focus on buying from yourself or prosumer nonsense, generally will struggle because the revenue they generate in their business is coming from their own pockets. Or their jobs are actually supplying the money for their own bonuses. In this model, the only way to profit is to sponsor many downline so the pyramidal compensation plan can work in your favor.

Many IBOs compare themselves to a franchise. Can you imagine a true franchise where your long term success depended on your ability to open other franchises? What if you as the owner and your family accounted for the majority of the sales? Could this franchise survive? More than likely not. Yet this is exactly what many Amway IBOs do and they mistakenly think they will be successful. The only reason why Amway IBOs are able to play out this model longer than a traditional franchise owner is because they do not have to rent office space or hire employees.

If an Amway IBO ran their business like a traditional business, the lack of retail sales to non IBO customers would be immediately apparent when the first month's electric bill or lease payment arrived.

Building a business entails many things. These things may include advertising, marketing of products, and do not necessarily include any training. In its simplest form, the Amway business is about selling and using products, and getting others to do the same as you do. Why do IBOs think such extensive training (standing order and functions) is needed? I challenge IBOs to write up an actual business plan for their Amway business, including projected sales and expenses and see what you come up with. If you think I am just being negative, write up your Amway presentation and show it to a loan officer at a bank. See what they have to say. Seriously.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Amway - Never Quit!

Never quit! That's what some uplines will teach new IBOs. They will make anecdotal comparisons about sports champions never quitting. For example, Tiger Woods will never quit in a golf tournament. While this may be true, the golf tournament will end and Tiger will play another day in another tournament. A football player may not quit, but the game will end and they will play another game on another day.

When someone says never quit, they mean don't stop trying, but it doesn't necessarily mean never quit Amway or never quit the tools systems. Many business owners at one time, have found themselves in a losing position. At times a business owner may have to make a business decision to close his current business due to lack of business, rent/lease is too high, etc. It doesn't mean that the owner is a quitter. This very same owner may open a new and very different business.

It appears to me, that some uplines use the catch phrase of never quit, and puts a negative label on those who quit Amway, as a means to apply subtle pressure to IBOs. I believe it is because an IBO who quits will not continue to be a customer of their lucrative tools systems.

IBOs and prospects need to take a critical look at their businesses. Take a look at your income versus your expenditures. Are you netting a profit or are you seeing losses month after month? Another vital factor is whether you are suffering a loss almost exclusively because of the expenses associated with the standing orders and functions? Some uplines will encourage IBOs to ignore facts, or they will try to instill hope with talk about success being around the corner, but these teachings are more likely self serving, to get IBOs to continue to buy tools, whether or not it is in the best interest of that IBO.

This message is to provide an insight into the straategy that some uplines will employ.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Amway - Costco Bests Amway In Many Ways!

In my informed opinion, Costco is a much better bargain than Amway. Since I was an IBO and a Costco member, I have seen noticeable differences. The main one being that when I leave Costco, if I spend $200, I leave with a cartload of stuff, as compared to an armful of goods that I got through Amway for the same price. I wrote a post about price comparisons between Costco and Amway recently. Costco came out ahead in nearly all price comparisons. That is not to say you cannot get any good products from Amway, but overall, I believe Costco to be the better bargain.

I live about 10 miles from my nearest Costo but driving there takes me along the coast of the island (I am from Hawaii) and it's a nice drive. When I arrive, I can fill my gas tank and using an Amercian Express card, I can get a 4% rebate on my gas purchase. I can also stop for lunch and get a foot long hot dog and a bottomless soda for $1.50, a deal that is hard to top. Additionally, there are great deals there. For example, a case of water, 35 bottles is $5.99. (How much for a case of perfect water?) I can also purchase a whole slow roasted chicken for $5.99, or a full rack of BBQ ribs for $9.99 or a whole 20" pizza for $9.99.

While Amway's laundry detergent and cosmetics might be somewhat competitive to other retailers and Costco, the overall array of products can be found cheaper at Costco and other big retailers. Additionally, I get up to a 2% rebate when I make my purchase with American express. No other strings attached!

But the biggest reason I like Costco? Nobody has ever tricked me into a Costco meeting which will try to sell me a Costco outlet! There is no Costco upline. Nobody has ever called me a broke loser because I didn't join Costco. Nobody tries to question my character if I decide not to shop at Costco. There are no Costco employees calling me names because I choose to shop elsewhere. There are no cds teaching me how to shop at Costco, nor do I have to attend any seminars to learn how to shop at Costco. I simply shop and save.

Some Amway defenders have tried to make price comparisons between Costco and Amway.
If you compare Costco online to Amway, the prices are closer, with Costco prevailing, but Costco prices are much cheaper if you are there in person and you can really add to your savings using a cash back credit card. I challenge prospects and current IBOs to walk down the aisles at Costco and compare prices.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Amway - What Are Eagle Parameters?

A frequent site visitor has asked numerous times and has doubted that there is such a thing as "Eagle" parameters. Now I don't know if WWDB still has this program, but I believe they do as I have seen some newbie IBOs mention that they are striving for Eagle. While Eagle may look like a "winner's club" of sorts to IBOs, I believe that the Eagles are basically the big money makers for the lines of sponsorship, which is probably why this program was created. Here are the general details:

Signed Counsel Sheet to Upline Diamond
300 PV personal use/retail for couples, 200 PV personal use/retail for singles
6-5-3 (PB/SO/MF) - Explained below
6 legs at 100 PV or higher
5 legs on standing order
3 legs attending major functions

Amquix info has more information:

This is the Eagle program. Since most IBOs are not able to sponsor a single downline, you can see that Eagle is probably a fairly exclusive club. But if you look at the cost of 300 or 200 PV ($900 or $600), most families wouldbe hard pressed to move that much personal volume. Of course you can sell product, but my upline did not emphasize selling, but more 100% personal use.

In addition to the PV, you have 5 legs on standing order and 3 legs traveling to major functions (I'm from Hawaii). The Eagle program made a lot of money for upline, but not necessarily for the IBO who held the Eagle parameters. It is possible to be an Eagle and not be at 2500 PV. However, a structure like this without the tools would be profitable, IMO.

FYI - IBOS and newbies, do the math and see for yourself.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Amway - Critics Steal Dreams?

Some debates over Amway recently churned up some accusations once again about critics being "dream stealers". I thought I would address this but first I wanted to print the definition of a dream from

[dreem] Show IPA noun, verb, dreamed or dreamt, dream⋅ing, adjective
Use dreams in a Sentence
1. a succession of images, thoughts, or emotions passing through the mind during sleep.
2. the sleeping state in which this occurs.
3. an object seen in a dream.
4. an involuntary vision occurring to a person when awake.
5. a vision voluntarily indulged in while awake; daydream; reverie.
6. an aspiration; goal; aim: A trip to Europe is his dream.
7. a wild or vain fancy.
8. something of an unreal beauty, charm, or excellence.

–verb (used without object) 9. to have a dream.
10. to indulge in daydreams or reveries: He dreamed about vacation plans when he should have been working.
11. to think or conceive of something in a very remote way (usually fol. by of): I wouldn't dream of asking them.

–verb (used with object) 12. to see or imagine in sleep or in a vision.
13. to imagine as if in a dream; fancy; suppose.
14. to pass or spend (time) in dreaming (often fol. by away): to dream away the afternoon.

–adjective 15. most desirable; ideal: a dream vacation.

—Verb phrase
16. dream up, to form in the imagination; devise: They dreamed up the most impossible plan.


Based on these definitions, I do not see how it is possible for anyone to steal a dream. This dream stealing verbage is just more upline propaganda designed to get IBOs to shut off their critical thinking skills and to blindly commit themselves to buying more standing orders and function tickets, whose profit goes into the pockets of your beloved upline leaders.

I believe #6 is the most appropriate definition for an IBO. A long term goal. But if an IBO's long term goal is retirement and riches, they should analyze their involvement in the Amway business and determine if that is the appropriate vehicle to achieve their goals. For the vast majority of people, this is not the appropriate vehicle and facts confirm this. It's a matter of whether or not an IBO was told to ignore the facts by his/her upline.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Amway - A Great Comment That Makes Perfect Sense!

I recently received this anonymous comment on a post and it sums up why potential Amway recruits need to use due diligence if they are thinking about joining and to be wary of predatory uplines:

[Quote] Sorry if i sound a little bitter but I actually know some people in real life who can nary afford to be buying/selling Amway products because they can barely put food on their own tables. Someone somewhere told them Amway was the way to financial freedom but forgot to tell them there was actual work involved, and now they are spending money that they should be using to get their life in order on Amway instead. They should be getting real SECOND jobs to make their ends meet but they are living this fantasy that one day they'll be a diamond too. Believe me when I tell you that their so-called Amway education is NEVER going to compare with my bonafide university degree and the doors that it opened for me.

IMO, Amway sponsors and uplines clearly prey on people who can least afford to take part in this 'opportunity'. They look for people who are down on their luck, working minimum wage or other crappy jobs and seduce them with a get rich quick scheme - you can work from home a couple hours a week! More time with the family! They turn them into automatons who spout motivational bullcrap and judgemental observations about people who have regular jobs (and can therefore pay their bills) because these people haven't 'broken out of their comfort zone'.

Color me comfortable with the comfort zone. In today's economy you would have to be a moron to spend more money on products that you can get at your grocery store for less. If I need a little more cash, maybe I'll get a second part time job that Joecool and others have already demonstrated actually PAY MORE than the average IBO makes selling Amway. And the best thing is, I don't actually have to spend any of my own money to do it.

-Living in the Real World

Monday, July 6, 2009

Amway - Why Do Amway Recruiters Need To Lie?

One thing I have noticed recently is how many Amway recruiters cannot or will not recruit prospects by telling them the virtues of Amway. It appears that insulting people's jobs or lifestyles is a common recruitment tactic by many IBOs. They try to instill a fear in recruits to make Amway look good.

Common tactics will be falsehoods such as 98% of Americans are dead or broke by age 65. Or they will make up outright lies such as 95% of all small businesses fail in their first year. They talk about the bad economy, or how starting a conventional business is a bad idea because there is some start up capital needed. While a conventionl business does involve some risk, you have a decent chance of succeeding, provided you plan well, and put in the necessary effort.

Planning and putting forth effort doesn't necessarily result in Amway success. As far as I know, there is no evidence that standing order, or functions guarantee any degree of success in Amway. Sure, Amway defenders will state that all of the (few)new diamonds were on the system, but will ignore the thousands if not millions of IBOs who also were on the system, put forth effort, and did not experience a profit.

At functions, one things I remember seeing was the fabulous toys and lifestyles of the diamonds, but there was no mention that these toys and luxuries were made possible by tools income or other sources of income outside of Amway. I understand that AMOs now mention tools income, but do not elaborate as to how you qualify and what the compensation will be if qualified.

It is my informed conclusion that Amway recruiters lie - because they have to. The business is a tough sell because of past unethical IBO behavior, such as tricking someone into attending a recruitment meeting. Factor in the high overall prices of Amway and Amway partner store products and the pyramidal compensation plan and you almost cannot recruit people in the US without some degree of shmoozing and deception.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Amway - Fierce Defenders Of Amway - Justifying Mediocrity And Failure?

Many companies have critics. Amway defenders are quick to point this out. WalMart may have hurt small businesses, maybe they don't have the greatest compensation. Microsoft may have faulty software or whatever. It's funny but I don't see WalMart or Microsoft employees writing on blogs and calling their critics losers, or acting like cyber bullies. Seems these bigger companies just do their thing and ignore criticism, yet these companies are very successful.

Corporate Amway Global has some blogs and they are mainly about Amway and Amway related stories, employees and the like.

But various IBOs have taken it upon themselves to defend Amway. Sometimes it has been done in less than ethical manners. For example, Amway biggest champion, IBOFightback, has been refered to as a cyber bully by more than one website, and has more blogs about Amway than Amway. His reason for so fiercely defending Amway is still a mystery because he said he is not compensated by Amway or Alticor, or by any motivational groups. He has admitted that he is not even active in building a business, therefore he is not making any significant money from the Amway compensation plan.

What makes this interesting is the tactics that IBOfightback and many of his fellow IBOs employ. They will attack the credibility of the critic or try to discredit someone by saying their experience is not valid, or their experience is too old to be counted, even when IBOFightback himself (apparently) hasn't done much in Amway since 1998. In some instances, defenders resort to shameless lies to defend Amway or product schemes such as perfect water, and then get mad when critics point out the antics. It appears that IBOs are their own worst enemies because IBOs themselves are guilty of most of what critics point out.

It is my informed opinion that many IBOs defend Amway because they were enticed by Amway upline leaders into believing that facts don't matter, that the dream is alive, that success is around the corner. Many IBOs see their $9 bonus checks and they have to justify themselves in order to claim success, to keep hopes alive that they will cross stage as a new diamond. To not defend their IBO bretheren is to admit failure. It is why much debate here is about IBOs analyzing their business and tracking profits and expenses. If IBOs are losing money and pretending to be successful, they are simply justifying their mediocrity and failure.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Amway - What Joecool Was Taught

When I was an IBO, I was taught many things. Most of the things my upline taught were (looking back now) detrimental to my business but beneficial to upline. Now I was an IBO over 10 years ago, but that doesn't invalidate my experience, especially when there is plenty of evidence that the same teaching continues today, and many of the same upline leaders are still in power today.

One of the first things taught was to check your ego at the door. Submit to upline. Always check upline first, it couldn't hurt. Ironically, IBOs are told to check upline for mostly everything, yet upline takes no responsibility for an IBO's failure, they only take praise for any success an IBO enjoys. Our group was even told to check upline before making any ourchases such as a new camera, a new car, or even before having children. I suppose this is because upline certainly didn't want you to suddenly have an inability to purchase standing order and function tickets.

We were also taught, and this was stated on a True North Tape, that you cannot cancel a standing order if one of your downlines quit. The reason stated was because it was too much trouble to call upline who called upline to cancel the standing order. Strange, but there was never a problem to call upline to call upline to add a standing order.

Our groups were analyzed by movement of standing order and function tickets. Upline never really gave a hoot about our PV or product sales. When I asked about the Amway requirement to have outside sales to customers, I was told to ignore that rule because nobody checked on it.

Our group was also taught that in addition to standing order, we should be ordering 5-7 extra tapes each week because we should be listenng to new material every day. Additionally, we were encouraged to buy extra function tickets because we didn't want to sponsor somemone right before a major function, only to have it sold out prior.

I am from Hawaii, so major functions costed well over $1,000 as I needed roundtrip airfare in peak travel months, plus hotel rooms, rental cars and other expenses associated with traveling. It is why I was unable to generate a profit, even with a 4000 PV business and what man consider proper paramters (I sponsored 12 personal downline). I was in the WWDB line of sponsorship.