Thursday, April 29, 2010

Amway - What Advice Does Your Upline Give You?

We have had some really good discussion on this blog recently about how someone can build a business in Amway without abusing downline. I was an IBO in WWDB, and I was given really bad advice from upline. These uplines are still around and apparently still giving some of the same bad advice to downline. Having said that, I believe there are some factions within WWDB who may be operating differently. I contributor on this blog, James C. has explained in some of his comments, how he operates, contrary to the mainstream WWDB teachings. Thus I was inspired to write this post.

My sponsor and uplines were Harimoto, Wolgamott, Duncan. We were taught that Amway saves marriages, and that the rest of the world gets divorced. Ironically, I believe Wolgamott is now seperated and possibly divorced or in the process of getting divorced. Greg Duncan was touted for his financial acumen and told the audience that only stupid people took out loans, even to purchase a home. Then we find out he was in bankruptcy proceedings with interest only loans. This is just a side bar. I will further explain what other advice was given to rank and file IBOs.

My sponsor and uplines told us that we should never miss a meeting. Period. That missing a meeting was setting a bad example for your group. In fact we should always purchase extra tickets to meetings and functions as an incentive to bring guests. We were taught that in addition to standing order, we should be purchasing 5-7 extra tapes/cds each week. Afterall, you can't listen to the same recording each day if you are core. We were told that if you had downlline who quit, you could not cancel a standing order because it was too much trouble to call upline who called upline who finally reached Greg Duncan to cancel a standing order. I found it ironic that they NEVER complained about calling upline who called upline who finally reached Greg Duncan to ADD a standing order. Our group was also told that nobody made a cent of profit from the tools. A lie that nobody has ever been accountable for to this day. If selling products were ever mentioned, it was only so IBOs could earn money to buy more function tickets and/or standing orders.

Our upline also enjoyed holding meeting after meeting, AFTER the functions. Thus IBOs went home after 3:00 in the morning at times, even on nights when the job was waiting for them the next morning. Our upline also taught more tenured IBOs that money wasn't important in the business because we are friends for life. The group was taught that we could have our families skip meals in order to buy more tapes/cds. IBOs were told that they should NEVER quit, unless they give up on life as they would be doomed for financial failure.

This is some of the bad advice I heard from some WWDB leaders. These leaders are still around today and I believe some of this is still taught. What does your upline advise?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Amway - Success Is Undeniable?

Success is subjective. Someone making ten dollars might be considered successful, for others, nothing less than a barrel of cash will suffice. One other important point is that there are undoubtably some very successful people in Amway. I am sure that some Amway diamonds are quite well off and enjoy some of the finer things in life. But the reality is that these successes are very very rare and many of these success apparently are not sustainable as many people are led to believe.

But the bigger issue in the Amway opportunity is where the success comes from. Sure, many people want to "go diamond" and live in luxury while barrels of cash roll in. But what is unknown to many, is that the few who enjoy the lifestyle and trappings do so at the expense of their downline. The downline move the volume and the downline purchases the system materials, both of which is profitable for the upline. Because Amway products, admittedly are not commonly sold to people who are not IBOs, then anyone can conclude that upline success comes from the pockets of the downline. Most downline would be better off writing a check for $100 each month to their upline and not participating in the business or buying products at all.

This in itself would not be such an issue if the system actually churned out new successes frequently AND if the downline were not led to believe that the system is the key to their success. But less than one half of one percent of IBOs ever reach platinum and out of those who do, only a tiny fraction of one percent ever attain the diamond level. But the business has tens of millions of people who tried and could never achieve what was promoted. Lack of effort may be a factor, but when that many people try and fail, it's evident that the system is flawed as well.

To summarize, it is possible for someone to achieve a level of success in Amway, but it is so difficult and so rare that IBOs probably have a better chance of winning the lottery or being struck by lightning than they do of achieving a significant level in the Amway business. Some people are successful, but it is usually at the expense of their downline. The catch is that uplines will teach their faithful downline IBOs that attending a function or buying a standing order is success, regardless of whether an IBO is earning a profit. So many IBOs think they're successful but they are simply fooling themselves with the help of their upline.

Success is undeniable, but sadly for the vast majority of IBOs, it is also unattainable, at least in the Amway opportunity.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Amway - Why Critics Are Important

I often wondered what the Amway opportunity would be without any critics. Many Amway supporters think that critics exist only to tear down others or to bash the Amway opportunity. I see it completely opposite. I believe that Amway critics are important for IBOs. Without any opposing voice, IBOs would mistakenly believe that they are in Amway utopia except that eventually, they would notice that they are losing their shirts.

When I was an IBO, our upline (and many others apparently) claimed that nobody made any profits from the system (voicemail, books, tapes/cds. functions). Without any opposing voices, this might still be happening. IBOs had no way of knowing. Upline just told bold lies and got away with it. To this day, none of these "awesome" leaders have even been held accountable for the lies. The diamonds simply ignored it. Sure, they now speak about tools, but there is little transparency about how you actually qualify for a share and how much you get when you qualify.

Critics have also pointed out that many IBOs are taught to ignore important facts such as their profits versus losses. Some IBOs are taught "fake it till you make it" or they are taught to "buy from yourself", both of which are ridiculous from a business standpoint. But without an opposing view, IBOs would never question upline. In fact, many IBOs are taught to avoid all negative. Don't watch the news or read the newspaper. In other words, upline wants you to be apathetic and only read and intake their Amway propaganda. This is why some people accuse Amway leaders of running a cult.

Think about this. Your body has pain sensors for a reason. What if you could turn off your pain sensors because you see it as a "negative". Do you think this would be good? Minor cuts or infections could become major health problems or other minor injuries untreated can become life threatening. You could touch a stove and burn your hands but you wouldn't know it without some pain. For this reason, I believe that having opposing views are also important for IBOs to consider. Valid criticism is good for IBOs who are serious about building their businesses. To avoid negative just for the sake of avoiding negative is silly. Critics are important.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Amway - Upline Contradictory Teaching?

When I was an IBO, I often heard things from upline that made my head spin. There were so many contradictory statements that it's no wonder that so many IBOs never make any progress. Some of the teachings made sense on the surface, but in the end, it was all self serving advice by upline to get IBOs to purchase more and more tools.

The best example was when an IBO leader would teach IBOs to get out of debt. Now that is great advice on the surface. Getting out of debt is what everyone should do, especially if they are carrying credit card debts. But then in the same speech, that same upline leader would say it was okay to get further in debt if it's to attend a function or to purchase more tools. If being in debt it bad, then under no conditions should that IBO dig themselves a deeper hole just to attend a function.

My upline also spoke of vertical alignment, which is setting yout priorities. So for example, God is number one, your spouse is number 3, family is number three and your job isnumber 4 with the Amway business being number 5. But when anything conflicted with an Amway event or meeting, everything else was expected to be re-arranged so that you never misss an Amway meeting, even if you were getting married you were expected to reschedule so as not to miss a meeting. I remember hearing voicemail messages about the heroic efforts people made to avoid missing any Amway meetings. It's downright scary when I look back at it.

Another example was how you would simply change your shopping habits. Well, that was taught initially but eventually, upline wanted or in some cases, demanded that you purchase everything from Amway, even the catalog products. In the end, you spent much much more than if you had bought various products at Costco for example. Add in the shipping fees and you are getting hosed.

The biggest thing that upline has never been accountable for was the lies. My upline told everyone that NOBODY made a profit from the tools, Later, the tools scam was exposed by the internet so it can no longer be denied, but uplines downplay the significance of tools profits.

Many uplines have been getting away with lies and contradictions for a long time. I am hopeful that informatin seekers and prospects will know the truth before deciding whether or not to sign up with the Amway opportunity.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Amway - IBOs Are Blinded By Unattainable Dreams

One of the things that get people excite about joining Amway is the big talk about dreams. My former LOS, WWDB, still has a big annual function called "dream nite". At dream nite, the diamonds will display a slide show with pictures of mansions, sports cars, jets, jet skis, vacations, golf outings and other fabulous goodies that will get people excited. For many, the prospect of not having to work 9-5 while still having cash roll in is enough to convince them that Amway is the greatest thing since sliced bread was invented.

The problem is that the diamonds are simply filling prospects and IBOs with false hopes and dreams.

While some people may attain some of these goals and trappings of wealth, the vast majority, probably more than 99% of people who come and go through the business, end up in failure and most with a loss of money. Evne those who put forth heroic efforts often find themselves at a loss after several months or several years of effort. I suspect that many diamonds themselves, cannot afford the luxuries they show off. There is eveidence of this happening. Several diamonds have had homes foreclosed, a prominent triple diamond was in bakruptcy proceedings. Former diamonds have come forth and explained that their income came mainly from tools and that Amway income wasn't that much. Some diamonds have resigned or quit, which debunks the myth of lifelong residual income. Some diamonds even took their entire groups and left Amway for other MLMs. So much for Amway being the best and providing lifelong residual income.

It is a sad thing indeed, that so many innocent prospects and IBOs have been deceived by shady upline leaders into thinking that in a short time frame, they will be purchasing homes in cashm retiring before the age of 40, and "walking the beaches" for the rest of their lives. In fact, I don't know of any diamonds who have done just that. It appears that crown ambassadors and others are all still working! Why aren't there people going diamond and then "walking away" to live a quiet life of luxury unmatched by any other opportunity?

Maybe it is a big lie or a myth? IBOs are basically dedicating their time and money to chasing an unattainable dream?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Amway - How The Teaching Evolves?

One of the things that is clear. Many Amway recruits are shown fancy cars and toys, along with luxurious vacations and trappings. This is a way to get prospects excited and interested in signing up for the Amway opportunity. Many sign up, the excitement fades and they quit. Many do little or nothing. But what many people do no understand or realize is that there is a reason for this. Many do little or nothing, I suspect because the business is much harder to build than adevrtised.

Because Amway has a stigma in the US (and growing in other locations), finding prospects is a daunting task. Add in the high prices of Amway products and you have major challenges that IBOs simply cannot overcome. Most simply quit and fade away into society. Some, like myself were lied to and abused, with upline leaders (WWDB)who were never held accountable for their actions. Thus I blog so others may share my experiences and can decide if they wish to climb insurmountable challenges for a miniscule chance of financial success.

What many leaders do is evolve their teachings. They start to teach their IBOs that the Amway opportunity may have made them nicer people, better fathers or husbands and other nice to hear stories because it covers up the fact that these IBOs are not making money. Sometimes I wonder how someone can be a better person by deceiving others about the business opportunity, or how you can be a better father or husband when Amway meetings become a priority over your family and friends. Or how you can be a nicer person and leave threatening messages on forums with those who disagree about Amway being a great business opportunity.

Rather that justifying your involvement or looking ar side benefits, IBOs should be looking at their bottom line. If your Amway "Business" is not generating enough money to pay for your voicemail and other expenses and leaving you with a net profit, then what exactly is your upline teaching you that is worth the ongoing expense? If you are like most, you are told that Amway has no overhead and has little risk. Well, that becomes untrue after months pass by and you have spent hundreds if not thousands on support materials that do not deliver you a net profit.

Are you new or a tenured IBO? Has your teaching from upline evolved away from making money as the bottom line? If so, what do you do next?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Amway - The Tools Have What Value?

When I was an IBO and even now, I see IBOs and others claiming that the tools are vital. That tools are necessary to achieve success in Amway. When I was an IBO, and I suspect even now, that uplines tout tools as a defacto mandatory part of being an Amway business owner. That nobody can succeed without tools. That tools are optional, but so is success. Noone has ever succeeded without tools but you can try to be the first. But if an IBO stops and turns on their critical thinking, one should ask, what value is in the tools?

For hardworking and dedicated IBOs, the tools are likely to cost on average $200 a month of more. If you have to travel by plane to attend functions, then your cost may be even higher. Driving the miles to show the plan, standing orders, voicemail, website fees, books and other materials basically become the business. I would bet money that most IBO spend more time listening to cds or voicemail than they ever do selling and/or promoting products.

Can you learn from some of the tools? Yes, I believe you can, but what value do they add to your efforts as an IBO? If you are a real business owner, you don't spend more on tools than your monthly income for very long unless the tools will directly result in your ability to make more profit. Most IBOs don't even make enough income from Amway to cover the cost of their monthly voicemail bill, let alone the other materials and the functions. Most IBOs never sponsor anyone, which is the key to attempting to achieve the residual income that many are chasing but few (if any) have ever achieved.

I mean if you handed out 6 cds and the result was 6 people sponsored, I would say you had a great deal. But I personally don;t know of anyone who ever handed out a standing order or any tape or cd that resulted in sponsoring a downline. I don't know of anyone whose business was profoundly affected positively because of the tools. Those who achieve in Amway appear to be natural leaders with a degree of charisma. It is why people gravitate towards them and are motivated by them. Lacking that, most other IBOs simply play a game called Amway that becomes expensive over a period of time. It is why there are stories of people losing tens of thousands of dollars in a business where there is "low risk". Your moneyis drained on function at a time, one standing order at a time. Thousands of people spending $200 a month on tools equals a nice income.

But do the tools have value? I don't see much there, unless you are selling the tools.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Amway - If The Products Have Value, Why Don't Former IBOs Purchase Them?

It appears to me that Amway sales in the US have gone down. Globally, Amway sales rose from 8.2 billion to 8.4 billion. However, if Amway sales were rising in China and India, then one can logically conclude that US sales are down. In fact, I do not believe there has been signifcant growth even in the days of "Quixtar". And Amway corporate blogger wrote that less than 4% of Amway sales were to non IBOs, or that 96% of Amway products are sold to IBOs.

Many IBOs and Amway defenders claim that Amway products are simply the "best". Some even go so far as to call Amway product superior to bix box retailer's products. In the past, some unbiased reviews of Amway products compared to name brand had some Amway goods rated as average, some were very expensive, and some were satisfactory. Of course, quality is subjective and it certainly seems that whether or not one is an IBO determines that quality.

But here's the definitive question. If Amway products are so good, why do former IBOs rarely continue to buy them? I mean Amway sales would continue to climb steadily each year if former IBOs kept buying products. And here's another angle on all of this. If some former IBOs do purchase Amway goods, I would bet that they do not purchase 100 PV or more each month as they do when they are IBOs. It would appear that uplines are able to manipulate or create an artificial demand for Amway products amongst the active IBOs. This is a point of contention between Amway defenders and Amway critics because an artificial demand toes the line on legality issues.

There are tens of millions of former IBOs. There are probably less than 200 qualified diamonds in the US. I believe there are more lottery winners than qualified diamonds. But if there are tens of millions of former IBOs and hundreds of thousands of current IBOs why aren't the Amway sales consistently growing? I believe it's because Amway IBOs are the primary consumers of Amway products and former IBOs are not. And because information is easily available on the internet, prospects who are approached an easily google up Joecool's blog or other sites full of information and make an informed decision. I believe that is partly why sales are down in the US, because recruitment and sponsoring of new IBOs is down.

So if Amway products have such great value, why don't most former IBOs continue to purchase them?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Amway - Why Isn't Success Obvious?

One of the things the diamonds and other big pins like to do is to flaunt their wealth. They show up at meetings with fancy cars, they like to wear fancy suits and my former LOS, WWDB, even had and still has a function called "Dream Night". Dream Night is where the diamonds show off pictures of mansions, jets, cars and vacations and they claim that everyone will one day join them in their lives full of pleasure and excess. Despite these displays of wealth, there is much evidence to suggest that these diamonds may not be able to afford all of these goodies. In fact, I strongly suspect that many diamonds are living in debt because they cannot sustain these fairy tale lifestyles on their incomes, even adding up the Amway and tools income. Now I'm not claiming that all diamonds are in hock, but I would not be surprised if half of them were in debt.

Even lower level IBOs attempt to appear wealthy. They may dress nicely and whatnot, but in the parking lot at functions, might see a more accurate glimpse of reality when you see what these IBOs are driving around. I remember seeing a bunch of broken down cars, some of them on their last legs at the local functions. Yet if you were to speak to some of these nice folks, you would be told they are doing great and that business is booming.

But my question is why isn't all of this Amway success obvious? Why do IBOs dance around the questions about how much they earn from Amway? Why do diamonds like to copy some once a year bonus and pretend that they earn that kind of income on a monthly basis? If a room were full of IBOs and only the ones with a NET profit were to stand up, only a small handful or less IBOs would be standing. Most of the rest probably don't even make enough to cover the cost of their voicemail.

Why can't an entire group of IBOs earn a net profit? The answer is simple. In the vast majority of groups, the cost of tools exceeds the group income that is earned from Amway. Do the math and it's easy to see. Unless your group refuses to purchase any tools and focuses on selling products, then you are more than likely to end up losing money. Success is not obvious, and the reason for that is quite obvious.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Amway - Why Joecool Started Blogging

Recently, I've gotten comments about why I blog and what may have happened while I was an IBO. I was an IBO back in the later 1990's. I achieved the 4000 level and I believe I could have gone platinum had I continued in the business. What I found was that the business did not deliver on what my uplines had assured me of. When my uplines started becoming controling and wanting to dictate how I lived my life, I started to question them. That and the fact that I wasn't making any money at 4000 PV, I decided it was a wise business decision to quit.

After I quit Amway, my life went back to a normal pace. I reconnected with the friends that I had shunned while building my business. Fortunately, they accepted mt back into the "gang" and life went on. I joined a bowling league, attended BBQ's and pretty muc forgot about Amway. But later, I came across a Newsweek or some other business magazine (sorry, no link) and it had an article about the Amway tools business. It outlined how the uplines made a lot of money from the functions and standing orders. I had always suspected as much but I never could confirm it. You see, my upline diamonds stood on stage and swore that they didn't make a penny from the tools and functions. Even though a minor bit of anger passed over, I also forgot about this.

Then one day, I came across "Quixtar Blog Forum" where I learned a great deal about the tools and other problems with Amway. I created my Joecool nickname and became a regular commenter on the forum. I learned a great deal about Amway and how the systems worked. I also was able to learn some of the more inner dealings of the systems and the diamonds. Some former platinums and I had some interesting dialog where I also learned that you are lucky indeed if you make any money, even at the platinum level. You see, a hard core IBO dedicated to the system and to upline's advice can indeed suffer losses at that level.

I started my blog as a means to get information out to prospects so they can avoid the pitfalls I encountered, or to at least join with full disclosure of what they are getting into. Since then I have engaged in many debates with Amway defenders and when given respect, I reciprocate. I believe that the facts are quite clear. That success in Amway (making a nice income) happens so infrequently, that most people are better off not doing anything rather than Amway. Add in the expenses for Amway tools (voicemail, standing orders, functions) and it's possible for IBOs to lose a lot of money in a few years time.

That being said, Amway has "some" decent products, but I believe most are not priced competitively and the compensation plan is not fair to those who actually do the work. Thus the result is the "masses lose their asses". I blog to help prevent this from happening.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Amway - Attack The Messenger, But Not The Message?

Recent comments on this blog have been quite interesting lately. Some heated, some inflamatory and some just silly. But what many Amway defenders fail to understand is that I am simply sharing my experiences and observations. I feel that is serves as an information highway for prospects who are looking into the Amway business. When I was in the business, the internet was not quite as accessible as it is now. Thus this blog is an easy way for people to gain information about my experiences in Amway.

Information seekers are free to ask questions, or even dispute what I have written. I do not disallow comments that are pro or con with regards to Amway. I allow both sides of the story to be expressed here. I moderate comments to prevent spam and sabotage, which I experienced in the past. In about 2 years,, Joecool's blog has nearly 50,000 site visitors. It's clear that my message is getting out there. But I say that commentators should question the message and not the messenger.

Quite often I see people leaving comments that I am lying or wrong but the comments never seem to specify what is wrong or inaccurate about what I am writing. Plus, how can my experience be wrong? It's my experience and that has been confirmed by the many other bloggers and by current evidence that is available on other websites on the internet. For example, I still see (in particular, WWDB) IBOs talking about buying homes in cash, and how the world has a 60% divorce rate while WWDB members have a 2% divorce rate. Where do IBOs get this garbage? They are taught this crap by WWDB leaders. And guess what? IBOs pay good money to learn this crap.

The truth is that Amway people and the world probably have teh same divorce rate, but it surfaces as an issue because IBOs make these silly claims. It's also ironic that some WWDB leaders who spoke of buying homes in cash had homes foreclosed and one of them was in bankruptcy proceedings recently. A WWDB leader who said that Amway saved marriages is now either seperated or divorced. These same leaders at one time SWORE that not a penny of profit was made from tools and function sales. We now know the truth and these leaders were never held accountable.

That is the truth. Attack the message, not the messenger.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Amway - IBOs Must Justify Their Failures

Onw of the things I heard as an IBO was how as an average working man, we tend to justify our existence. For example, we will tell others that "I'm doing okay", at least with respect to our finances. We justify our apparent lack of finances that way. So my upline would talk about building the business so that the money is literally pouring in. But based on my observations and some tangible evidence, we know that many diamonds and certainly those below diamond do not have money pouring in. In fact, I suspect many diamonds are in debt, and possibly living month to month. As much of a diamond's income is from annual bonuses, it's possible that a diamond's monthly bonus from Amway is quite small. It is why I have often said that many diamonds are likely living very middle class lifestyles while trying to portray a fabulous jetset lifestyle. It is why I feel that many diamonds are actually broke or near broke.

And if diamonds can get into financial difficulty, then certainly IBOs are also in trouble. Many recruits are in financial difficulty, or do not earn enough income, which is why Amway appeals to them in the first place. It is why Amway appealed to me at the time I was involved. Many are convinced that Amway will make them rich. While uplines may have said Amway is not get rich quick, the prospect must have been fed the line that they will eventually get rich, else why would anyone sign up in the first place?

But in the big picture, IBOs are no different than other people. They also justify themselves. In fact, many are taught to justify themselves. It is why I still see IBOs claiming that Amway saves marriages. One IBO recently made the age old claim that the world has a 60% divorce rate and WWDB IBOs have a 2% divorce rate. Well, I am certain that is not true. I would guess that in many cases, Amway is the very reason some couples get divorced. And actually, this would not be an issue if IBOs and their leaders would not claim it. I believe the divorce rate amongst WWDB diamonds is already higher than what these IBOs are claiming. But upline just covers up scandals and downlines ignore the lies and cover ups.

Another funny one if when IBOs claim they are helping people by building the business. How do you help someone by enrolling them in a business where they are nearly guaranteed to lose money? What do IBOs do that is helpful to others? While IBOs are at functions or prospecting, other people are doing community service projects or feeding the homeless. I challenge an IBO to explain how recruitng others into Amway is helping them. Many IBOs also believe they are nicer people as a result of their involvement with Amway. If true, then it is a nice benefit, exept this is a business and a business exists to make a profit. How many would join if they were only going to accomplish everything but make money?

IBOs, are you succeeding or justifying yourselves?

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Amway - Why IBOs Ignore Facts?

One of the crazy things that our upline taught the group was that the facts don't matter when you have a dream. There is evidence that this is still taught today and in particular, I have heard that from IBOs who claim to associate with WWDB. IBOs are taught to ignore facts because the facts make their Amway businesses look like a joke. Spend $300 a month on products to gain a $10 rebate when you could have bought the same or similar products at WalMart for a fraction of the cost. Then many IBOs spend another $200 or more so they can be taught to ignore facts of that this is somehow a great deal.

Any real business owner would never ignore facts. A real business owner makes decisions based on facts. IBOs are being duped into making business decisions on emotions and hype. The Amway opportunity already is already saturated with handicaps and challenges, particularly in the US and Canada, where the repuations and previous antics of fellow IBOs has so stained Amway's name that it appears to be negatively affecting sales and preventing any meaningful growth. Despite what Amway apologists claim, Amway is very likely shrinking in the US, and will continue to do so unless improvements and corrections are made, in my opinion. It's also possible that it is too late to right the ship at this point.

It is also why many IBOs talk about how Amway saves marriages, or Amway made them nicer people. Uplines will teach this because it takes a business owner's focus away from their bottom line, the profit or loss. Or IBOs are taught that a loss just means they are investing in their business, despite being tols upfront that there is little or no investment needed and that a profit can be turned quickly in Amway. These uplines have gone on for years with no accountability placed upon them by either Amway or their downlines. Any "incidents" are simply ignored or history revised by uplines.

There is one blog on the internet, where a WWDB IBO is writing about buying homes in cash, and Amway IBOs having a 2% divorce rate compared to more than 50% in the rest of the world, yet you have amway defenders like Bridgett Baron or IBOFB claiming this isn't being taught, when clearly it is. Cover it up all you want, the evidence is right there but these folks aren;t interested in the facts. Some of them even create fake blogs under fake personas to make Amway look good.

Why are we ignoring facts?

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Amway - IBO Progress/Success?

Many Amway advocates claim that IBOs will eventually succeed if they don't quit. Some of these same advocates claim that if you work the business as shown in the plan for about six months, you are virtually guaranteed to succeed. While this may be true in foreign countries, I do not believe this to be true in North America. Far too many people have a negative impression of Amway for IBOs to build a business and recruit downline without some degree of deception or outright lies. Even if you manage to sponsor a downline, the likely result will be that your downline will either do little or nothing, and they will not be IBOs one year later.

But let's look at a real example of someone who is core and sponsors 2 downline per month for 6 months. This IBO would have 12 downline. (And this would probably be a top 1% of all IBOs) Well, more than likely, 6 of these IBOs will not do enough to earn a bonus. These IBOs may very well do nothing at all. But say the other 6 downline all do 100 PV like good soldiers. Add that to your 100 PV and you have a group PV of about 700, and bV of about 2100. Your group bonus would be about $189 and your 6 downline will each receive about $10, leaving you with $129. A tidy little sum I suppose.

But wait, you and the 6 downline who are core, are on voicemail, websites, standing orders, and attend all open meetings and functions, thus your monthly expense can range from $200 to $300 a month on average. So the group leader suffers a net loss as do all of his downline. The downline suffer the biggest losses until they eventually can sponsor enough downline to absorb the cost of the system tools. And because many groups do not teach and emphasize retail sales, there is little money coming in from customers, thus IBOs are their primary customers, which means an IBO's job pays for these losses. These 7 core IBOs spend $1400 to $2100 a month on tools to earn a bonus of $189. If you add more downline, the collective group losses get bigger, but the initial sponsoring IBO's losses get smaller until there is enough downline to offset the losses. Thus the larger your core group gets, the larger the overall losses are. You succeed at the expense of your downline.

IBOs progress doesn't equate success. It equates success for someone upline, probably someone who promotes and profits from tools.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Amway - The Amway Critics Have Won?

I've been blogging for about 6 years now and I have seen many others come and go, both supporters and critics of Amway. There have been good debates, but the critics have come out on top because the truth is on that side of the ledger. While there are some very rare IBOs who build their Amway businesses ethically, the majority of IBOs end up in some LOS that will sell them tools consisting of typically, voicemail service, cds, books, and seminars or functions. The problem with these materials is that they don't work and most system IBOs end up with a financial loss primarily because of the cost of these materials. Ironically, many uplines gain their luxurious lifestyles by selling the system rather than from Amway.

Recently, some IBOs were bragging about how Amway sales increased from 8.2 billion to 8.4 billion from 2008 to 2009. However, considering that sales were up in India nd China, one can reasonably conclude that the sales in North America had to be down. I believe this is because information seekers using the internet can easily access websites containing valuable information like this one. I believe that the free flow of information has allowed potential IBOs to make informed decisions and apparently, many people are simply choosing not to get involved with Amway, thus the decrease in sales and an apparent decrease in Amway supporters visible on the internet. I also believe that this has led to fewer Amway critics as well. Overall, I see this as a positive sign that people are seeing right through unethical uplines and their bottom lines are shrinking.

I believe that because Amway may not be quite as lucrative as before, you are seeing diamonds quit, resign, or even take their entire groups to a new MLM. If Amway really had lifelong residual income as many IBOs mistakenlt believe, you would see or hear about diamonds walking away from Amway to walk the beaches of the world while the money rolls in. Sadly, that is a myth and while many chase that dream, I don't know of anyone who's achieved it. It is why crown ambassadors and double diamonds are still working, quite possibly because they have to.

Have the Amway critics won? I don't know but the evidence is pointing to "yes".

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Amway - How Honest Is Your Upline?

One of the things my upline told me as an IBO was that we didn't have to "reinvent the wheel". We just need to copy what they have done. We needed to simplt "trust them" as they have our best interests at heart and they would never lead us astray. Furthermore, we should not venture out and do things without checking upline because out downline needed to do what we do, thus anything an IBO does has to be "duplicatable". Looking back I find that ironic as many a diamond would speak about buying a home in cash, as if that was duplicatable.

My upline flat out lied about making money from the sale of motivational tools such as standing orders and functions. In fact they even lied about WWDB and claimed it was a non profit organization. Since then, the upline's lies were exposed, but to this day, uplines are less than honest about the profits they earn from tools. Sure, now that the internet has exposed this side of the Amway business, it cannot be covered up so upline will admit they earn money from the tools but how a rank and file IBO can actually qualify to share in the profits, and how much they can earn still appears to be a mystery. Some Amway advocates will make up obscure reasons why this topic cannot be spoken about, but I believe selling tools without any degree of transparency becomes a huge conflict of interest as some uplines make more money from tools than from Amway, while swearing that Amway is the key to financial success.

Another thing my upline said was that as IBOs, we are helping people and saving the world. I thought that was odd as we were always in meetings and we never did a thing for anyone unless they were interested in becoming an IBO. We were also told that it was important as IBOs to "submit to upline". If you are being taught this, then you have to wonder why you are called an "independent" business owner. Shouldn't final decisions be made by the business owner? This is also why some Amway groups are compared to cults.

Lastly (for now), does your upline diamonds and leaders display wealth? Do you see slide shows of fancys cars, mansions, jets, boats yachts and other fabulous goodies? In my former LOS, WWDB, they still have a function called "Dream Nite" where the diamonds display many of these kinds of trappings and tell the audience that you can have what they have if only you will do what they did. But try asking a diamond to verify his claims by showing you their business tax returns or earnings. You will probably get an answer like "none of your business". Sure, they may show you a copy of a check or something like that, but it shows you nothing about how much they keep out of that check.

So the question is, how honest is your upline?