Thursday, April 28, 2016

Is The 100 PV (defacto) Quota Unfair To Amway IBOs?

I believe the 100 minimum level to qualify for an Amway bonus is unfair and in this article, I will explain why. I also believe that Amway could actually retain and get more sales by changing this to 3% for 1-100 PV. If you were to obtain a cash back credit card, you only get paid likely one time per year, but there is no minimum amount of purchases. If I have 1% cash back card, if I spend 100 dollars, I'll get back $1 and if I spend $5, I get back 5 cents at the end of the year. There are no minimum purchases to qulify for the cash back. Even if you have consumer debt, a cash back card is still better than not having one because you can ear back a small percentage of your spending back. I don't know why everyone doesn't have a cashback card or at least one that gives you airline miles. But these credit card companies count on consumers to carry debt or they would go out of business paying these rewards. If everyone paid their bills each month, they would stand to lose money.

But that isn't the case for Amway. In Amway, once you buy a product, Amway makes a decent profit and charges you for shipping. They make their margin whether you buy 1 PV or 100 PV. But whether or not you buy 1PV or 100 PV, you pay the same price to Amway (as an IBO) and Amway MUST include the IBO's bonus money in their wholesale price because obviously, Amway will not operate at a loss (and who would?). But As an IBO, you pay a registration fee and you spend the time, expense and effort needed to sell Amway products. Some sales might e easy, and some might be difficult (if you have any sales), but still, the IBO gets nothing unless they meet the minimum 100 PV. Amway apologists will argue that you can earn retail profit by selling products (the margin comes from the customer, not Amway), but still Amway products are not competitive with big retailers so the products can be difficult to sell.

So why can't Amway issue their bonus at 3% for lower level IBOs? I believe it's because there would be less money for the people "higher up the pyramid". If you don't meet the 100 PV, you earn no bonus and the next people upline who qualify will receive that bonus, even if you worked hard and sold 68 PV. You would earn nothing for that effort from Amway. As I said, yes you might earn something if you manage to make a retail sale, but it seems that these sales are not as common as Amway defenders want you to believe. I believe that most IBOs end up selling to sympathetic family and friends primarily. Some Amway groups teach "buy from yourself" because most people do not like selling, So self consumption and BS like "prosuming" is taught to IBOs.

I honestly believe that Amway could actually retain lower level IBOs by allowing them to earn bonus rebates at lower levels because there would be a tangible monetary reward for using/and or selling soe Amway products. It won't happen, but why should Amway change? They have billions in sales. But here's food for thought. Amway last year did 9.5 billion in sales with 3 million IBOs worldwide (numbers are approximate). Walmart did nearly 500 billion in sales with about 2 million employees (I saw this comment on another forum and thought it was significant). Obviously one system works and that system is WalMart's. The 100 PV defacto quota is unfair and Amway's results clearly show it.

Unseen By Amway Prospects?

One thing that I was unaware of as an IBO was that our uplines were profiting from our tools purchases. I was in WWDB at the time and I was told very clearly that nobody made money from the tools and in fact, I was also told that WWDB was a non profit organization. Both of these statements were bold lies told by WWDB leaders and they have never been held accountable. We were told that upline cared about us and our success, thus they spent their own money to fly to functions to teach us how to succeed.

Eventually, the internet amd other media made it impossible to cover up these lies and uplines funally admitted that they profitted from tools. However, it looks like they downplayed the magnitude of the tools profits. I believe some upline may have made most of their income from tools, especially leaders who may have fallen out of qualification. Now the upline admits they make some profits from tools, but there is still a great deal of secrecy in the tools business. What makes the whole thing ironic is that the uplines allegeldy are not supposed to entice Amway prospects into joining by using the tools money as a draw, but at the same time, they are told that tools are vital to their success.

I wonder how many prospects or IBOs would be fired up about buying tools if they knew that their uplines might not currently be qualified at the level they claim to be, and knowing that the uplines will make a ton of money whether or not you make a cent as an IBO? Also, some uplines are shameless is pushing the tools on downline. Sure they might cut the newest guy a break and loan them some cds, but once that IBO decides to start building downline, they are likely to be told that a real business owner buys their own tools, or that a business owner needs to be a leader and purchase extra tools for their downline.

How would you feel uf your upline is touting themselves as a financial genious but in the background, their homes are foreclosed or they have financial difficulties? What if your upline touts their morals and you find out they are divorced or getting a divorce? What if your upline said Amway saves marriages? Your upline certainly won't say they are perfect, but conversely, they should be held to the highest standards if they are using their status to be able to sell tools and make large profits.

Many prospects and IBOs don't know this, but I hope they take it to heart.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Amway IBOs Don't Work Hard Enough?

One of the things IBOs are taught is to blame themselves for is not working the business hard enough or not doing things right, exactly as upline advised. Actually, nothing could be further from the truth. It's just that uplines want to be absolved from any responsibility so they teach downline that failure in Amway is their own (The downline's) fault. Upline is also quick to take credit for any success, of course.

But the reason is why hard work doesn't equal success is because an Amway IBO is basically a commissioned only sales person. In commissioned sales, one can work hard for no reward and at times, little effort may reap large rewards. But in Amway, with a spotty reputation, Amway IBOs are dealt with a handicap that most simply cannot overcome. Getting new people to recruitment meetings is hard enough, not even factoring in the abililty to sponsor others. When factoring in these tidbits, it's easy to see why uplines teach buy from yourself and selling is not needed. Not to mention Amway's uncompetitive prices which make sales very difficult, save for some sympathetic friends and family.

The work involved is very simple. Sell products and get other IBOs in your downline to do the same to be able to leverage your volume. Many IBOs work hard and attend all of the functions and do all of the steps as outlined by upline, but very few reap rewards and most quit when they realize that the system doesn't work. It is sad that on top of losing money, that IBOs are also taught to blame themselves for their demise. Where is the upline when IBOs bust their butts working har and get no rewards? On top of that, to make it worse, uplines profit from selling training and motivation to their downlines. Why aren't they held acountable?

I've read comments by some Amway defenders wanting to sue Amway critics for a potential loss of business. But most critics, like myself are simply stating our experiences and opinions. Most of which are true and still happening today. So I will ask, what about the millions of former IBOs who may have lost billions of dollars because of false claims which led them to believe that they would get rich following upline advice? Maybe former IBOs should unite and file claims against unethical upline leaders who led them astray?

In any case, hard work doesn't equate success in Amway and I dare anyone to try to prove me wrong.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Amway Retirement?

One of the humorous things I read is when am IBO says he or she is 19 years old and will be "retired" at the age of 24 because of the Amway business. I personally don't know of anyone who has retired primarily on residual Amway income, as many seem to claim. I am not suggesting that nobody has ever done this, but I suspect that there are so few people who may have done it that it is not noteworthy. Even the Crown Ambassadors appear to not only be working, but have very busy schedules where they are constantly on the run. In fact, several crowns have sort of recently passed away while still working the business. Sure, you can argue whether a crown works "hard" or not, but having to be somewhere at a particular time (functions) to earn money is not the freedom that these folks preach. And, the poor retention rate of IBOs would suggest that even a sizable Amway business could fall apart rather quickly without a constant replacement of IBOs, which is why I believe even crowns keep on working.

I ask this of IBOs. Is your upline diamond, or someone in between you and the diamond retired because of (primarily) Amway income? Do you as an IBO have a projected date when you will "walk away" from the business and retire? When I was an IBO, I always wondered why nobody "walked away" from their business after they went diamond. I believe the answer is crystal clear. Because IBO turnover is so high, if a diamond were to walk away from the business, he would probably fall out of qualification in less than a year. The bonuses would disappear and the diamond would probably have to look for a job. There are many examples of diamonds who have quit, and in some cases, went back to work. But generally, diamonds just keep working the business, probably because they have to!

Many unsuspecting prospects may be lured into the Amway business with the hope of an early retirement. Amway recruiters may mention that control of time and money is the key to success, but ironically, for most who sign up, will end up with less time and money than if they did not join at all. For many people. especially young people, it might be a good idea to seek financial advice from a professional and to make long term investment goals. Am investment of about $200 a month can net you close to a million bucks after 30 to 40 years.

Yes, there may be "some" people who retired early due to (primarily) Amway income. But I don't know any. Do you? Can anyone name even two of these people?

Monday, April 25, 2016

Amway Teaching And Debt?

One of the pitches used to attract people to the Amway business was to earn enough just to get out of debt. Afterall, many Americans these days have credit cards maxed out and racking up more and more consumer debt. But the tough question is whether joining Amway will help the situation or only make it worse? Afterall, in general, Amway products have higher prices than retailers such as WalMart or Costco. Anyone who denies this is either being deceptive or is truly misguided. You can try to argue about Amway's quality of products. Some products are good, but overall, consumers simply don't find enough value in them. Seems that IBOs don't even buy Amway products unless they are pursuing their dreams of going diamond. Once that dream ends, so does their loyalty to Amway products.

Sadly, for most business building IBOs, the business opportunity and its connected teaching system such as WWDB, BWW, or N21 simply creates more debt for IBOs. Think about it, an IBO will already be spending about $300 a month to earn their defacto 100 PV requirement. If that IBO subscribes to voicemail and no other tools, that IBO will already have a net loss for the month. Factor in ongoing expenditures such as standing orders, functions, open meetings, regional functions, books and other miscellaneous expenses and you have an IBO heading towards tens of thousands of dollars deeper into the debt hole. Most IBOs don't see what's happening because the debt is incurred a few hundred dollars a month, but most IBOs think it's okay because they are convinced that they will recoup the losses and earn a huge surplus in the long run. Unfortunately, only a tiny fraction of 1% of IBOs will ever earn a decent profit from the Amway opportunity. Most will realize they are making their finances worse and end up quitting.

In the few cases where a diamond's financial were exposed, these diamonds were in hock. Even a prominent triple diamond was not earning enough to sustain the lifestyle he and others promoted on stage. It is my guess that these diamonds in financial difficulty is more likely the norm than the exception. Do the math. If a triple diamond earns about a million dollars from Amway and the tools profits, can that income sustain a jetset lifestyle portrayed in functions like dream nite? I mean it is a great income, but everything is relative. Someone earning say $70,000 a year can live a comfortable lifestyle without debt. But diamonds portray a lifestyle of excess and almost arrogance. It's no wonder some of them have financial problems.

In the end, IBOs are drowning in debt as a whole. The system nearly ensures that the group of IBOs collectively will end up with a net loss with one or two at the top earning a profit. One's dedication to tools determines how much an IBO will lose. The more dedication, the bigger the losses. If your upline teaches you to get out of debt, that's good. but if they teach you to get out of debt, except for functions and standing orders, take that as a huge red flag.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Amway Accountability?

One of the things that our group was taught while in Amway was that we were supposed to be accountable. Upline stressed this and said we need to be good for our words. Looking back, this was one of the things that really ticks me off the most about my time in Amway. The upline stood on stage telling us to be accountable and to do what we say. These diamonds that stood on stage speaking about accountability were telling bold faced lies to the audience and have never been held accountable for their actions.

These diamonds stood on stage telling the audience that nobody make money from the tools. It was a bold face lie. Eventually the internet exposed this lie and the diamonds pretended it never happened. Now they admit they make "some" money about from tools but they never actually disclose exactly how you qualify and how much you receive once you qualify. In other words a written compensation plan is not readily available. It's more of a wink wink and a handshale. What was insidious about this was these leaders told the downline that the tools were vital to your chance of success and nobody ever succeeded without tools but you can try to be the first. (Does this sound as if tools are promoted as optional as per Amway rules?)

The other thing that most IBOs don't notice is how IBOs who make any progress, even if little, will be touted as products of their foolproof system. Yes, follow the tools and the system and you're assured of success right? But heaven forbid, if you fail (like the vast majority do), it's your own fault. You didn't work hard enough, you didn't try hard enough, you didn't undertsand what upline was saying. You didn't follow the system exactly right. You only have yourself to blame if you fail Amway. As an aside, I did what my upline asked and I was edified and had the parameters that my upline advised. (I was an eagle) But despite doing the work and driving the miles and achieveing what I was told, I made no net profit. I was told that the money would be there if I kept on going. I was already becoming suspicious about the tools scam so when I did the math, I realized that (I was at 4000 PV) going platinum wasn't going to make me much money either for my time and efforts.

You can't make profits if you follow the system (dedicated) because all your profits go right back into the syetem. You also have to help your downline. So in summing it up, success is credited to the system but failure is the fault of the IBO.s Flip an coin and it's heads I win and tails you lose.

And then if that isn't enough, people who quit are labeled as quitters or broke losers. It's a subtle way of keeping people in the system. Nobody wants to be labled as a loser right? So you try to press on. You have a fear of being a quitter and you've also been taught that people no in Amway are broke and have little hope for a good financial future. And all the while upline is laughing all the way to the bank. When I finally quit Amway, it felt werid, like I had so much free time on my hands and it seemed like I had extra money because I had no business expenses.

All the while, the same old upline are still teaching some of the same garbage even to today, and have never been held accounatble for their lies and bad business advice. I decided to start informatative blogging to provide information to information seekers so people can see what to expect from upline. Have I made any difference? I don't know but I'm sure that most people, armed with information, would not choose to get involved ina business where the vast majority fail, despite putting in the time, effort and money to succeed. The upline have never been accounatble for their actions. I blog as a way to allow prospects to know what to expect if they're being recruited. My efforts may make littelt difference in the big picture, but let me close with a story.

A little girl was walking along the beach tossing beached starfish back into the ocean. A man walking on the beach told the little girl that there were thousands of starfish and that she can't possibly save all of them so her efforts were in vain. As the little girl tossed a starfish back into the ocean, she said "it made a difference to that one". That's why Joecool is still blogging today.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Amway Is Fair?

One of the things my upline always taught was how the business was fair. Everyone starts at zero, we were told. Everyone does start at zero, but it is hardly fair when you break down the compensation and the layers of people between you and your uplines. I will also speak about how the sponsoring is somewhat cloudy as well. Despite the claim that you will be paid if you "do the work", it is not necessarily true. These are catch phrases that upline uses to make it seem fair.

The sponsoring system that Amway uses is a hit or miss. You could have tons of business acumen and insight on running a business, but your sponsor and others upline will always be your upline and will always profit on your efforts - simply because they were there first. In many cases, a sponsor has nothing to offer a downline. They are in no way shape or form able to advise or give sound business advice. But as long as they are in the business, they get to profit from your efforts. Does that sound fair to you?

Also, let's take a new IBO for example. If that new IBO sells and consumes 100 PV, that new IBO will receive a 3% bonus. Amway pays 30+% of their take in bonuses. Thus the new IBO who "did the work" gets 3% and somewhere in the layers of upline, the remaining percentage gets split up among the upline. Some of the upline don't know that the new IBO exists, but they get a portion of the bonus, simply because they were there first. The new IBO has done the work and some of the uplines have done nothing to help this new IBO, but they enjoy a percentage of that IBO's bonus. Does that sound fair?

Tenured upline may also sell business support materials such as voicemail, websites, books, cds, and seminars. None of these materials have been proven to be effective in assisting IBOs in building a business. In fact, some of the biggest crown ambassador types built their Amway businesses before these materials existed. But because they were there first, they now claim to have the expertise on how to build a successful Amway business. Based on some numbers that Amway has provided, we can conclude that about 1 in 400 IBOs ever reach platinum (source: and out of those who reach platinum, less than 1% ever reach diamond. Not much evidence that the system works. Yes, I acknowledge that some people don't follow the system, but out of these ones who do follow the system, the success rate is still miserably low. If the system is so diffcult to follow and succeed, is it fair for IBOs to have to keep paying for a system that will not help them?

All of the above are reasons a new IBO has the deck stacked unfairly against them. Yes, some IBOs can overcome overwhelming challenges and succeed, but they are few and far between. Is this business set up in a fair manner? I say no.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

The Amway "Systems" Are Broken?

If you are an IBO or being recruited to be an IBO, it is almost certain that you are being recruited by an IBO in a "system". Now the system will likely have a name such as Network 21, WWDB, BWW, LTD or some others. Most if not all of these groups or systems will claim they are the best, fastest growing, or the most profitable. Now we know that they all cannot be the fastest growing or whatever. Most if not all of these systems will advise their IBOs to participate in their system. The system generally consists of websites, voicemail, books, cds, standing order cds, seminars and perhaps other workshops. The pressure to participate may varyt amongst groups, but it appears that the more you participate, the greater the pressure placed on you. Sort of like the analogy of boiling the frog.

All of these system companies are for profit companies, and generally the profits go to the diamonds and higher pins who own and run these companies. Some of the system diamonds earn most of their income from the sale of these tools. Now these system promoters may tell you that the system is vital to your success and some may claim that you cannot succeed without them. However, these system companies profit from selling you these materials whether you as an IBO profit or not. These systems profit even if you work hard and still go broke. While the system owners may claim that all success is attributable to the system, the same claim can be made of an even greater number of failures. Even the IBOs who put in an earnest amount of effort have an insignificant rate of success, perhaps lower than 1%. It is easy to conclude this because many and possibly most platinum businesses will consist of 100 or more IBOs. The platinum level is allegedly where an IBO breaks even or starts to make a small profit. Factor in the people who come and go (quit) and it is easy to conclude that the vast majority of IBOs either make nothing or lose money.

When you factor in the system expenses, then the number of IBOs who lose money goes up significantly. Looking at the 6-4-2 plan or whatever version your group uses, the lower levels of IBOs will earn less than $50 in a month, with most IBOs earning less than $20 per month. These IBOs won't even earn enough to cover the cost of their voicemail. If an IBO is participating in all of the system tools such as functions, it is nearly guaranteed that these IBOs will lose money due to the system expenses.

My conclusion is that the system just does not work. There is no unbiased documentation that suggests that the system works. Sure there may be some biased testimonials, but that would probably be it. If you are an active IBO, you can easily see if the system works as there would be new platinums, emeralds and diamonds emerging frequently, but that is not the case. It seems Amway is declining in the US and therefore, any new success (pins) will simply be replacing former pins who fall out of qualification or those who quit. The system does not work. However, I also came to the conclusion that nearly all of these financial systems do not work, including real estate gurus, Kiyosaki etal. It is why when they show success testimonials, there is usually a diaclaimer saying "unique experience".

In most if not all of these systems, including the Amway systems, apparently success is a unique experience. My conclusion? The system is broken. The system does not work. Some people can succeed in spite of the system, but rarely ever because of the system.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Amway Dreams?

One of the things that Amway leaders use to attract new IBOs is to talk about the dreams that these folks have. They may talk about how having a job will wear you out and dreams that you once had as a child or young adult gets suppressed and/or completely forgotten. They try to revive some of these dreams in the hopes that they can convince prospects that Amway is the only way, or the easiest or best way to accomplish these dreams. They also try to instill the notion that people can choose to succeed in Amway. Being that success in Amway has so many variables out of the direct control of an IBO, nobody can simply choose to make it big in Amway anymore than they can choose to win the lottery. And by the way, the chances of going diamond and maintaining it is about as remote as winning a lottery.

What is somewhat cruel is reviving dreams that for many, will never come to fruition, no matter how much work is done, and no matter how many tools are consumed. There are many instances where no matter how big the dream, it will never come to pass because of physical and financial limitations. For example, as a child, many of us had dreams of playing professional football, hockey or basketball, and living in the glory of winning. However, no matter how many hours you put in and no matter how hard you work, the vast majority of people will never be pro athletes. And even out of the ones who become pro athletes, very few are considered "elite".

Yet the Amway promoters will have people believe that just buying a few products and selling a few products and 2-5 years of "hard" work, people will join the financially elite in the world. As if home care and beauty and nutritional products moved from person to person is going to make you achieve your dreams. That you will quit your jobs and walk the beaches of the world while the cash rolls in by the barrel full. Sadly, many young people become attracted to a propostion that allows them a shortcut to retirement instead of working until age 62 or whatever the standard retirement age is. They are basically promoting false hopes and promises to the vast majority of people who get involved. I believe those who are deemed as "dream stealers" might be doing their family and friends a favor by "stealing their dream", which will not come to pass anyway.

With about 1 out of 240 IBOs reaching platinum (the alleged break even point) and about 1 in 20,000 IBOs reaching diamond, the dream is a stretch indeed. Even for the select few who can overcome major challenges and hurdles, maintaining their status often becomes impossible and and not worthwhile (many diamonds have quit). Also, if you do make it, you will leave behind a trail of people who could not or did not come close to that level of success. It means that in many cases, your success will come at the expense of those you sponsor. It is why many claim that Amway is a legal pyramid.

Having dreams and goals is a good thing. But do you want to accomplish your ultimate dream by hurting (financially) those who trusted you and agreed to be your downline? Is it your dream to go diamond and have 500 to 1000 or more downline IBOs losing money? Is it your dream to be wealthy by exploiting people who trust you and believe that they can achieve the same level of success, when the opposite is true?

What is your dream? Are you willing to hurt others to achieve it? Your answer to this will say a lot.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Amway 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 and be taught 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 told 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 IBOFightback 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?

Friday, April 15, 2016

Get Rich In Amway Working 8-12 Hours A Week?

One of the myths that upline used to, and likely still perpetuates is the claim that you can build an Amway mega empire on 8-12 hours per week. I'm venturing an educated guess that this number is used because while it still represents time, it is probably less hours than working a part time job. But let's take a closer look at this 8-12 hours per week.

If you listen to one (1) cd per day as recommended by upline and read one of their "success" books 15 minutes each day, you already close to nine hours of time used and neither of these activities produces any income for your Amway business. In fact, both activities cost you money and produce no tangible result. If you spend another 15 minutes a day contacting people, you are close to 12 hours per week. Where will you find additional time to show the plan and to expand your name and contact list? What about servicing customers, at least for IBOs who actually may have some customers. And you also need to follow up with people you've contacted and/or shown the plan to.

What about attending meetings and functions? These are also non income producing activities. It's no wonder the vast majority of IBOs don't make money. Their upline has them running around participating in activities that produce no income for their businesses. Ironically, their non income producing activities such as listening to a cd, produces a lot of income for certain uplines who produce and sell them. To me, it is just an elaborate game of bait and switch played by upline. The worst waste of time and money is a function, especially if air travel is needed to get there. It takes you away from your business and it costs you a lot of money. Double damage!

You sell the prospect the dream of financial freedom. You tell that that Amway is their best chance. You tell them that you can help them and that the tools of the business (standing order, voicemail, books, functions) are the key to their success. Those who are serious enough to commit to the system likely won't quit without making some effort and will allow uplines to earn some nice profits before these downline eventually realize they aren't profitable and quit. Because many IBOs are sponsored by family and friends, you don't see too many formal complaints about the business. Most people chalk it up as a life lesson and do not complain.

But IBOs and information seekers, do not be fooled into thinking that you will create a financial empire by working 8-12 hours a week. What's happening and most IBOs don't see it, is that your upline diamond is creating their financial empire by your tool purchase and efforts of 8-12 hours a week. You as an IBO, are expendable.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

The Amway "Quality" Argument?

One of the things that Amway IBOs like to argue to justify their selection of Amway products is that Amway has high quality, and they feel justified in paying the premium price because of that quality. Oddly enough, these IBOs don't seem to feel the same way once they leave Amway. I believe it's because when the IBOs are fueled with dreams of wealth and residual income, they don't mind forking out premium prices for what I consider average products. I am posting an article that shows exactly why Amway cannot compete with the big retailers. The consumers have spoken!

WASHINGTON » The vast majority of Americans say they prefer lower prices instead of paying a premium for items labeled “Made in the U.S.A.,” even if it means those cheaper items are made abroad, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll.

Nearly three in four say they would like to buy goods manufactured inside the United States, but those items are often too costly or difficult to find, according to the survey released today. A mere 9 percent say they only buy American.

Asked about a real world example of choosing between $50 pants made in another country or an $85 pair made in the United States — one retailer sells two such pairs made with the same fabric and design — 67 percent say they’d buy the cheaper pair. Only 30 percent would pony up for the more expensive American-made one. People in higher earning households earning more than $100,000 a year are no less likely than lower-income Americans to say they’d go for the lower price.

Low prices are a positive for US consumers — it stretches budgets and allows people to save for their retirements, if they’re wise, with dollars that would otherwise be spent on day-to-day living,” said Sonya Grob, 57, a middle school secretary from Norman, Oklahoma

Amway Sales?

One of the things IBOs like to tout is how Amway had over 9 billion dollars in sales. That's great for Amway. The Amway corporation surely made a good profit from those sales. I'm pretty sure that the DeVos and Van Andel families would use Amway products. But I'm also sure that their purchases are an insignificant portion of the Amway Global sales. Most of their sales are to IBOs and to customers of IBOs (if any). After paying operational costs and their eomployees, Amway makes a nice profit, which is why the families who own Amway are (last I heard) registered as billionaires.

IBOs, regardless of level, make up the sales force for Amway. But IBOs do not work for Amway. They are "Independent Business Owners". They are supplied products from Amway and receive their bonuses from Amway for the amount of volume they move. They can also sponsor downline which helps them to move more volume since downline's volume is also credited upline.

Many IBOs however, in the past and even today, hold the philosophy of "buy from youself and get others to do the same". I believe this method of running an Amway business was created because many people do not like the prospect of selling products, especially when the business often requires a "personal touch". Thus many IBOs simply buy from their own business and hope to sponsor a lot of downline. Sadly, most IBOs cannot sponsor anyone and cannot or do not sell Amway products. Again, a product of human nature.

Many IBOs are taught to move at least 100 PV, which is equal to about $300 in sales. However, if an IBO fails to sell any products, then effectively, the $300 in sales belongs to Amway and the IBO had nothing, rendering the IBO as a customer. If the IBO sells a few items and consumes the majority of their 100 PV, then Amway still gets the sales and the IBO gets a tiny bonus but upline still gets the lion's share of the bonus that Amway pays out..

The point it this. If your consumption dollars exceed your sales dollars, then whatever income you receive, is simply coming out of your own pocket. It would be like clipping coupons and then when you use them at the store, you count the coupon value as profit. Ridiculous right? But sadly, it is what many IBOs have done, and continue to do today. What makes things worse is when an IBO spends their hard earned money to purchase standing order, voicemail, and seminar tickets where they teach this garbage. It's like paying your upline and Amway for the priviledge of consuming and selling Amway products. Everyone makes a buck except the lower level IBOs. The lower level IBOs comprise the vast majority of the IBOs in Amway.

Amway had over 9 billion dollars in sales last year. How much net profit do you think they would have if the DeVos and VanAndel families consumed most of that volume? Right, they would have massive losses. What makes IBOs think they are any different?

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Amway IBOs Hide The 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 12, 2016

The Problem With Amway?

One of the reasons I started blogging was to share my personal experiences in Amway and WWDB, and to allow information seekers and prospects to get an insight into what I see as potential problems with the Amway opportunity. In many of my blog articles, you will notice that many of the problems I have identified with the Amway opportunity are more closely ties to a motivational group such as WWDB, BWW, or Network 21. But Amway apparently has allowed many bad practices to go unchecked, thus they are not completely guiltless in the abuse of downline over the years.

Too often, the Amway opportunity is misrepresented by IBOs. For example, I have heard so many times, that Amway is a franchise opportunity, which is not true. I have also heard so many times that an average Joe can work for 2-5 years, and create a willable and residual income that will allow you to not have a job, and possibly to allow you to enjoy untold wealth and luxury. If people could actually build the business and "walk away" to enjoy exotic beaches while cash rolls in, why can't anyone name 2-3 people who have done so? Instead we see diamonds an other actually quitting or working Amway until their death. Where is this freedom that the diamonds talk about?

The bigger problem is the promotion of motivational tools as being the key to success in Amway. Although technically "optional", most uplines will promote the tools as necessary and vital and that an IBO would be insane to build a business without tools. Thus many IBOs spend money on tools and sadly, most IBOs never make enough money in Amway to cover the cost of their tools. In fact, over a number of years, I have heard of people losing tens of thousands of dollars (or more) to the tools systems. And once you start participating in the system, the decision to quit can be difficult because of the time and money that an IBO may have already invested. Also, the thought that maybe upline is right and that persistence will pay off. Well, there is no unbiased documentation that persistence and hard work (and applying the system) actually works.

Amway defenders like to point out that all the new platinums and diamonds used the system, but FAIL to point out that the rest of the IBO force who may have worked just as hard simply ended up with business losses. Amway defenders also fail to point out that perhaps a larger number of platinums and diamonds may have failed to requalify at that level. So much for willable and residual income. By the way, if residual income is a benefit of the Amway business, why can't I find anything from the Amway corporation to confirm this?

I could go on and on, but lastly for now, I think it's a bit shady for diamonds to show off fancy cars or mansions as a way to flaunt their alleged success in Amway. I would prefer the traditional manner of reviewing business tax returns. Showing a copy of a check means nothing because business expenses may have exceeded the amount of the check, leaving an IBO with a net loss. But in the Amway opportunity, it is common practice for IBOs to hide their income or to show a diamond's Mercedes as proof of income. It doesn't add up for me and I would urge information seekers and prospects to scrutinize someone who tries to impress you in this manner. For all you know, your diamond rented the sports car you are seeing.

Those are some of the issues I see with this opportunity. I challenge IBOs and LOS leaders to clean it up.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Why Amway IBOs Fail?

So many IBOs quit and fail, I think the Amway corporation might need a calculator to keep track. And of the IBOs who work and try hard, most of those IBOs also end up in failure and losing money. After years of blogging about Amway, I believe it is because the uplines and the tools they sell to help IBOs are ineffective. When I was an IBO, I don't recall many tools that contained information teaching me how to run a business or how to run an Amway business. There was no talk about tracking income and expenses. In fact, our group was advised to ignore the facts. The scary thing about this is that it is evident that some groups are still teaching this.

Many IBOs and prospects are lured into the business by displays of wealth and not because of bonafide and verified business credentials. A friend of mine sold his franchise business a few years ago and part of what he provided to the prospective buyer was the last three years of his tax returns, personal and business returns. But try asking an upline to even see a business profit loss statement or a schedule C business tax return and you are likely to be told it is none of your business. Instead, upline may show off a photocopy of a bonus check which may be an annual or a once in a lifetime bonus. Or upline may show off a sports car as evidence that they are successful. Sadly, some of these uplines might be broke, they may owe back taxes to the IRS and/or they may even be in debt but simply showing off wealth.

Some uplines have the nerve to discourage young people from furthering their education because they would rather they channel their money into Amway and tools. Some people are told to make family sacrifices to attend more functions or to buy more standing orders. I will grant that not all uplines do this but based on my experience, I would say more uplines do this than not. They will apply subtle pressure on new IBOs and the newbies probably don't know much about Amway or business so they basically have to choice but to trust a diamond who has allegedly achieved the pinnavle of success in Amway. Then uplines will often betray their disciples by saying that failure is the personal responsibility of teh IBO. That advice needs to be discerned by the new IBO and bad advice should be discarded, as if a new IBO would know what is good or bad advice.

I aso see experienced IBOs who don't seem to know how taxes work. I see IBOs who were given the impression that Amway is easy and that they will work once and enjoy the fruits of their labor forever. Oddly, I don't know of a single IBO who did the work once and sat back collecting residual income forever. I find it odd that even tenured crown ambassadors continue to keep busy work schedules. I suppose they could just enjoy this lifestyle but still I find it odd that nobody I know of could specifically name an IBO who achieved diamond and higher and sat back collecting income while enjoying the beaches of the world.

Seems that IBO turnover and failure is more common than not in the AMO world. It also appears that incoming IBOs are like fuel to a fire. Without continuous recruitment and replacement of IBOs who quit, the organization would eventually fall apart along with the bonuses that the higher ups enjoy. It is my informed opinion that many IBOs fail because they aren't taught sound business principles. Despite the constant flow of cds, voice messages and functions and meetings, it doesn't seem as if any practical information is passed from upline to downline. Only messages of never quitting and continuing to dedicate themselves to the system. The result is inevitable and the expected result is failure.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Diamonds Pay Cash For Everything?

When I was an IBO, at functions the diamonds used to brag that they always paid cash for everything. Afterall, it was stupid to pay interest because you had a loan. You just pay in cash for what you want and it's done. The diamonds said they even paid cash for their homes and other big ticket items. On the surface, that seems like good advice but the reality of life is that most people need a loan to purchase a home. A mortgage is not an "evil" debt as the diamons might make it out to be. You buy a home and get a mortgage. It allows you to purchase the home and make reasoable payments. Look at it this way, it's like a long term rental where the rent never increases. Even if you pay the bank interest, it allows you to make the purchase, and the interest is tax deductible. I puchased a home in Hawaii (Windward Oahu) for $300,000 in 2001. While I still have 15 years to pay off the loan, my homes is now worth $800,000 and I still get to deduct the mortgage interest. Also, because the interest rates were low, my mortgage is relativey small.

Back in 2009 or 2010, a prominent WWDB triple diamond filed for chapter 7 bankruptcy (I have links if needed) and it showed that this diamond not only had mortgages, he also had credit card debt (Greg Duncan). Imagine that, a diamond who told people loans were stupid had a bunch of loans and credit card debt even though he has a large income ($500K annually from Amway). Other WWDB diamonds also put their "mansions" up for sale around that time and they also apparently had "mortgages". How do you have a mortgage if you paid cash? (They lie) Kind of makes me wonder what else the diamonds lied about? Are they "do as I say and not as I do"? Seems they are hypocrites and I suspect many diamonds live "check to check" like the rest of the world, although you can argue that the diaonds still have nicer stuff that someone who is "broke". What many people do not know is that a diamond receives most of their annual income in the form of annual bonuses, thus a diamond's monthly income might be relatively small.

One thing is for sure, diamonds do not live as large as they like to portray. I believe the diamonds must portray a life of excess because nobody will get excited about going diamond, and live a middle class lifestyle (albeit without a 9-5 job). Think about it, even if a diamond makes say $200K from Amway and another $200K from tools income (400K annual income), after taxes, business expenses, and things like medical and dental insurace (and perhaps a mortgage), they are not living a life of endless leisure and doing what they want when they want with no regard to cost. Keep mind as I said that most of a diamond's income is an annual bonus so that bonus must be budgeted out or the diamond will go broke.

I haven't been to an Amway function recently but if you see diamonds bragging about diamonds paying cash for everything, do the math instead f blindly believing and you may be able to see what I see. That it's more likely hype and BS than the truth. Diamonds portray excessive wealth but they are more than likely middle class people with the illusion of wealth.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Amway Broken Dreams?

One of the things Amway promoters use to entice prospects into joining is to get them to think about financial dreams and goals that they would like to accomplish. After all, who wouldn't want to be retired at age 35 and walking on the exotic beaches of the world? Or who wouldn't want to live a life of leisure and excitement with unlimited barrels of cash rolling in to finance all of the fun and frivolity?
Of course most people get excited by this. The promoters try to make it appear that everyone in the audience can achieve this goal but the reality is they can't. The numbers provided by Amway and shown in "the plan" confirm this. In the common 6-4-2 plan, you have a platinum and 78 downlines who aren't. Factor in people who do little or nothing and you're likely to have 150 or more non platinum IBOs for each platinum. Amway's numbers show that about 1 in 400 reach the Gold level.

Sadly, the things that people get excited by, or the things that people join for, often become less accessible because of people's involvement in Amway. Not due to Amway itself, but because of the leach organizations that attach themselves to the Amway business. These organization will promote their materials (tools and functions) as the key to success in Amway, but in reality, these organizations reap handsome profits while basically bankrupting the downline IBOs. What is also sad is that the system does not deliver the success that is touted. Less than one half of one percent even reach the platinum level, which is allegedly the level where you break even or make a small profit.

During my tenure in the business, uplines taught us to buy all the materials. Books, standing order tapes/cds, functions, and other materials. In fact, in addition to standing order, upline wanted IBOs to purchase an additional 5-7 tapes or cds each week. Afterall, you should be listening to new material every day right? In fact, upline wanted people to "invest" or spend all of their income on these materials. In an open meeting setting, a diamond said that your family could skip a meal to get another tape/cd because the information was so valuable that you might hear the one thing that propels you to diamond. Almost as if buying a tape/cd was like some lottery ticket.

And sadly, some IBOs did go "all in". They bought tools like there was no tomorrow. In my crossline, there was a couple who went bankrupt and a couple whose home was foreclosed. Now was this financial difficulty all due to their involvement in Amway? I don't know, but certainly, buying hundreds of dollars of materials on a monthly basis can certainly contribute to someone's financial problems. And these IBOs did this on upline's advice. Thus upline advised this even when they likely knew that these IBOs were in financial difficulty. If they would tell you to starve your kids, then surely they will not be concerned about your other issues. I also sat in a function where a diamond taught about how long you can put off paying a mortgage before foreclosure would occur. Probably so people could go in hock to attend a major function.

It is a sad thing indeed when uplines will try to sell you dreams. What's worse is when they are actually selling you broken dreams.

Amway Car Salesmen?

When I saw the Amway plan, it made perfect sense at the time, because the diamond who made the presentation made everything seem sensible. Make money and/or save money. On the surface, you would have to be nuts to not want to make or save some money. But it is the reality that is the problem. The reality is for business building IBOs is financial damage or financial disaster from the ongoing costs of the system expenses. I saw crosslines go bankrupt and more than one couple lost their homes to foreclosure by "doing whatever it takes" to get to the next function.

Our group (WWDB) edified people who bought extraordinary amounts of extra tapes/cds, extra function tickets and made superhuman efforts to get to functions. Looking back, I remember an IBO who was edified for coming all the way to a family reunion function in Portland Oregon when he was diagnosed with terminal cancer. The speaker said he could have been miserable spending time at home but here he was making a difference in people's lives. WTF? I wrote a post earlier this month about how IBOs think they are saving the world and helping people when in reality, the masses of IBOs are only "helping" their diamonds to attain material wealth by purchasing function tickets, voicemail, standing orders and other materials.

I would agree that some training and information can be helpful for new IBOs but I do not see any value in a neverending supply of cds and and endless number of meetings and functions. The very thing (support materials) that uplines claim is your key to success is the very thing that nearly guarantees business building IBOs to financial struggles. Our upline wanted IBOs to be out of debt, which is good, but they would also say in the same breath that it was okay to go into hock if it was to attend functions or to purchase additional support materials. WTH? Sadly, many IBOs do not see through this self serving advice.

Most people, including myself are very wary when we deal with car salesmen. We are wary because we know that the salesman is out to make money off of us and will try to sell us every option in the book. Thus we negotiate and reject the car options that we don't really need to or. Guess what? Your uplines are like car salesmen except that they sell you different options such as premier club, standing order, book of the month, function tickets, voicemail, open meeting tickets. Just like a car buying customer, taking all the options maximizes the car salesman's commission and the car dealer's profit. Buying all the support materials increases your upline's profits. Imagine the car saleman telling you that the extended warranty was vital to owning the car. You'd think twice about it, yet uplines will tell you that functions are vital to your Amway business and many IBOs buy it hook line and sinker. I hope this analogy will encourage IBOs to think of support materials as options on the car. You don't need any options to make the car work. Just as you don't really need support materials to buy and sell Amway products, and to get some downline to do the same.

We are wary of car salesmen. In my opinion, downline and prospects should be just as wary of uplines who promote tools as "vital" to your success in Amway. Keep in mind that a sponsor is obligated to help train any downline, regardless of whether they are on the system or not.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Amway IBOs Wear Rose Colored Glasses?

One of the things IBOs get attracted to is how uplines will promote traditional family values. They may talk about the "Leave it to Beaver" days where the man works a job and the wife takes care of the home and drops the kids off at school. While some of these values are great, they are not reality in today's world. The speakers at some Amway meetings may recruit others by saying you can have this out of the box lifestyle if you will only build your Amway business. This gets the wives or girlfriends excited as they would love to not have to work a 9-5 job.

Ironically, an IBO's desire for more time and money, more often than not, will result in less time and money for an IBO and and IBO's family. They will take time off to show the plan, attending countless numbers of meetings and to attend functions. They are taught to "delay" gratification, but many do not realize that they are permanently delaying gratification by participating in the "systems".

An IBO's belief is often compartmentalized into thinking that showing the plan, listening to standing order, submitting to upline's advice and attending all functions will result in guaranteed success within 2-5 years. Anyone who speaks a differing opinion of this is "negative" and should be avoided. Sadly, those who put forth such dedication and invest in the system are rarely rewarded with success. Even those who achieve the platinum level may often find that the net profit they realize is less than a minimum wage job with the same number of hours put forth. And maintaining a platinum level is a daunting task.

My former sponsor achieved the platinum level in less than two yaers, but he never achieved Q12 status, and he never went beyond the platinum level. He has been involved for nearly 20 years now, and last I heard, is below the platinum level. All of that work and effort and I wonder if he even has a net profit of $1.00 for all of his efforts?

Yet, many IBOs continue to see the world through rose colored glasses, thinking that they will succeed if only they will never quit. They disregard the fact that 2-5 years has come and gone. They do not see that their bottom line is nowhere near what they were led to believe. But they believe that Amway will be their financial savior, even though there are facts and red flags pointing to the obvious reality that they will never achieve what they initially set out to achieve.

I hope my blog will get a few IBOs to take off the rose colored glasses for just a second and see the reality.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Random Observations About Amway IBOs?

Observation #1: In general, IBOs are less successful in life than others. That's why they are more open to the business and why they can be convinced that there is a shortcut to retirement and perpetual untold wealth. When I was an IBO, I was not where I wanted to be financially at the time, as I was younger and in the earlier stages of my career. I would not be open to “options” right now. However, many people looking for more in life or a shortcut to retirement may be more susceptible to looking at options. It's just that the Amway opportunity, in my opinion, is a poor option and is more likely to tame your money than to give you more.

Observation #2: The biggest zealots/supporters of Amway appear to have the smallest businesses. They talk the talk - but no evidence that they walk the walk. Also, any discussion about their personal success with the business is limited and shrouded in secrecy or they will make vague references about their level of success. They will say that their incomes are not relevent to the dicussion or will point out a copy of someone's check or show a picture of a diamond's mansion, but will never disclose real financials like a REAL business owner would. Funny how they always "know a guy" who is very successful.

Observation #3: The business has a bad reputation and cannot be marketed to the general public without some degree of deception. It’s why there are so many testimonials of people tricked into attending meetings (including myself). Being straight forward with information will likely get you a resounding “No thanks”. Sometimes you'll get funny looks if you talk about Amway. Almost a look of "who farted"? LOL

Observation #4: It would appear that much upline teaching is not focused on actually running a profitable business, but dedication to the tools systems. It’s why so many IBOs don’t seem to know what a profit loss statement is, and don’t bother keeping one themselves. It’s also why the content of many BSMs (Business Support Materials - cds/function/seminars) is to purchase more BSMs. At functions, they will tell you to attend more functions and buy more standing orders, and on standing orders, they will tell you to never quit and to attend more functions. A lot of the teaching helps the people selling the teaching but not anyone else.

Observation #5: IBOs in general don’t seem to have planned out their retirement. They are convinced that the Amway opportunity will provide for them when they reach their retirement years. They put down people who are working jobs and investing for their futures. They feel that purchasing function tickets is their investment for retirement. While a fraction of 1% might make some significant money in Amway, the vast majority do not. The fact that the majority may not have put forth a Herculean effort is irrelevant in my opinion. The bottom line is that the vast majority will not make an income from this opportunity. To ignore this fact is burying your head in the sand.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Your (Amway) Bottom Line?

One of the most vital things about running a business is your bottom line. The bottom line is a net profit (or loss) for a business. But apparently, many IBOs do not look at their bottom line, probably at the suggesttion of their uplines. I believe uplines ask downline to ignore the bottom line because for most IBOs, even dedicated ones, it is a loss. Thus IBOs are taught that Amway saves marriages, or that the Amway oppportunity has made you a better person, or that the Amway opportunity has made you a better husband. All of these things are great side benefits for having joined Amway, but in strict business terms, most IBOs are failures in the profit and loss category. (And if you are out almost every nite building an Amway business, are you really a better husband and father?)

The facts, some of which are published by Amway reveals this message quite clearly. Most IBOs cannot or do not sell a lot of Amway products. Most IBOs, even with much work, will never sponsor a downline. Even those who manage to sponsor others are likely to see these downline quit within the first year. In fact, many IBOs cannot even find someone open enough to see the Amway business plan. I believe it is why you hear stories of trickery, lies and deceit involved in many stories about Amway. Even the IBOs who do the work are likely to earn less than $1 of NET profit after taking business expenses into consideration. In fact, when factoring system expenses, most system IBOs operate at a loss!

So for most IBOs, the bottom line is a loss. Yes, some IBOs make money. Some make a lot, but those making money seem to have been around for a long time. I believe that too many observers mistakenly believe that the platinum level is profitable. I believe that a dedicated system platinum earns very little after all of the expenses associated with the system are factored in. This was confirmed by an attorney general study conducted in Wisconsin showing the average platinum lost nearly $1000 a year. While Amway defenders will claim that the study is dated (from the 1980's), I would like to note that the basics of the business hasn't changed. In fact, the advent of KATE and some other system materials make the expenses even higher than back when the Wisconsin study was done!

So IBOs, what does your bottom line look like? Is there anything left of your PV bonus check at the end of the month? Or is it a loss that you justify by claiming you are a nicer person? Would you have joined if the plan had said you would be nicer but losing money? Would you have joined if you knew you would be losing money but have new Amway friends? Would you have joined if you knew that a platinum might be losing or not making much money? The bottom line in any business should be a profit. What does yours look like?

Monday, April 4, 2016

Amway IBOs, Don't Quit Your Jobs?

So many IBOs have grandiose dreams of untold wealth, financial freedom. They think they will "build it once' and sit back on the beaches of the world sipping exotic drinks while the 6 figure checks keep coming in the mail. Sure it's a nice thought, but not a single IBO I have encountered can name a single IBO who achieved diamond, and walked away from the business to enjoy freedom while the money pours into their bank accounts. It is very likely that nobody like this exists. I suppose someone could go diamond and walk away from the business and still earn some bonuses, but very quickly, that business would likely fall out of qualification and the bonuses would shrink to nothing very quickly. Also, to earn bonuses, I believe an IBO needs to have side volume exceeding 2500 PV, which is roughly $7500 monthly in personal group volume. With normal attrition, it's easy to see how a diamond business can fall apart faster than a cheap suit without maintenance.

I also see and hear many IBOs popping off about how someone in their upline earning $60,000 a year. While it may seem like a nice income to someone who has a low paying or entry level job, that income is gross and may not leave much left after taxes and associated business expenses. Even a diamond with an average income of $150,000 in a year likely has a very low monthly income from Amway as much of that income comes in the form of an annual bonus. As a former emerald once told me, you needed to budget out that annual bonus or you could be in financial trouble later in the year, if Amway is your sole source of income.

Also, you may have seen diamond showing off sports cars and other displays of wealth. My former LOS, WWDB has a function called "Dream nite" where they show off lavish displays of wealth. Well, it is my informed guess that most diamonds cannot afford the lifestyles and toys that they show off in these functions. If you do the math, you can see that after taxes and other expenses, a diamond lifestyle is likely to be quite ordinary. Normally, nobody would care about this but since diamonds use this display of wealth to recruit IBOs and to sell tools, it is significant for IBOs to know.

While it is great for someone to have dreams and goals, it is also important to have achievable goals. It is simply impossible for a room of IBOs to go diamond and to earn the kind of income that is shown in "the plan". Amway recruiters will show you "what's possible", but not "what's likely". To put perspective on that, it's "possible" that you can start a software company that puts microsoft out of business, but it's not likely. It's possible for you to win the lottery, but not likely. My advice to IBOs is not to quit your day jobs - ever. Your dreams and goals can be accomplished in many ways, but it is unlikely to be achieved with an Amway business.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Characteristics Of A Millionaire?

From Stanley and Danko who wrote the book "The Millionaire Nest Door". Guess what? Amway diamonds don't fit the description.


Who is the prototypical American millionaire? What would he tell you about himself?(*)

* I am a fifty-seven-year-old male, married with three children. About 70 percent of us earn 80 percent or more of our household's income.

* About one in five of us is retired. About two-thirds of us who are working are self-employed. Interestingly, self-employed people make up less than 20 percent of the workers in America but account for two-thirds of the millionaires. Also, three out of four of us who are self-employed consider ourselves to be entrepreneurs. Most of the others are self-employed professionals, such as doctors and accountants.

* Many of the types of businesses we are in could be classified as dullnormal. We are welding contractors, auctioneers, rice farmers, owners of mobile-home parks, pest controllers, coin and stamp dealers, and paving contractors.

* About half of our wives do not work outside the home. The number-one occupation for those wives who do work is teacher.

* Our household's total annual realized (taxable) income is $131,000 (median, or 50th percentile), while our average income is $247,000. Note that those of us who have incomes in the $500,000 to $999,999 category (8 percent) and the $1 million or more category (5 percent) skew the average upward.

* We have an average household net worth of $3.7 million. Of course, some of our cohorts have accumulated much more. Nearly 6 percent have a net worth of over $10 million. Again, these people skew our average upward. The typical (median, or 50th percentile) millionaire household has a net worth of $1.6 million.

* On average, our total annual realized income is less than 7 percent of our wealth. In other words, we live on less than 7 percent of our wealth.

* Most of us (97 percent) are homeowners. We live in homes currently valued at an average of $320,000. About half of us have occupied the same home for more than twenty years. Thus, we have enjoyed significant increases in the value of our homes.

* Most of us have never felt at a disadvantage because we did not receive any inheritance. About 80 percent of us are first-generation affluent.

* We live well below our means. We wear inexpensive suits and drive American-made cars. Only a minority of us drive the current-model-year automobile. Only a minority ever lease our motor vehicles.

* Most of our wives are planners and meticulous budgeters. In fact, only 18 percent of us disagreed with the statement "Charity begins at home." Most of us will tell you that our wives are a lot more conservative with money than we are.

* We have a "go-to-hell fund." In other words, we have accumulated enough wealth to live without working for ten or more years. Thus, those of us with a net worth of $1.6 million could live comfortably for more than twelve years. Actually, we could live longer than that, since we save at least 15 percent of our earned income.

* We have more than six and one-half times the level of wealth of our nonmillionaire neighbors, but, in our neighborhood, these nonmillionaires outnumber us better than three to one. Could it be that they have chosen to trade wealth for acquiring high-status material possessions?

* As a group, we are fairly well educated. Only about one in five are not college graduates. Many of us hold advanced degrees. Eighteen percent have master's degrees, 8 percent law degrees, 6 percent medical degrees, and 6 percent Ph.D.s.

* Only 17 percent of us or our spouses ever attended a private elementary or private high school. But 55 percent of our children are currently attending or have attended private schools.

* As a group, we believe that education is extremely important for ourselves, our children, and our grandchildren. We spend heavily for the educations of our offspring.

* About two-thirds of us work between forty-five and fifty-five hours per week.

* We are fastidious investors. On average, we invest nearly 20 percent of our household realized income each year. Most of us invest at least 15 percent. Seventy-nine percent of us have at least one account with a brokerage company. But we make our own investment decisions.

* We hold nearly 20 percent of our household's wealth in transaction securities such as publicly traded stocks and mutual funds. But we rarely sell our equity investments. We hold even more in our pension plans. On average, 21 percent of our household's wealth is in our private businesses.

* As a group, we feel that our daughters are financially handicapped in comparison to our sons. Men seem to make much more money even within the same occupational categories. That is why most of us would not hesitate to share some of our wealth with our daughters. Our sons, and men in general, have the deck of economic cards stacked in their favor. They should not need subsidies from their parents.

* What would be the ideal occupations for our sons and daughters? There are about 3.5 millionaire households like ours. Our numbers are growing much faster than the general population. Our kids should consider providing affluent people with some valuable service. Overall, our most trusted financial advisors are our accountants. Our attorneys are also very important. So we recommend accounting and law to our children. Tax advisors and estate-planning experts will be in big demand over the next fifteen years.

* I am a tightwad. That's one of the main reasons I completed a long questionnaire for a crispy $1 bill. Why else would I spend two or three hours being personally interviewed by these authors? They paid me $100, $200, or $250. Oh, they made me another offer--to donate in my name the money I earned for my interview to my favorite charity. But I told them, "I am my favorite charity."


Ask the average American to define the term wealthy. Most would give the same definition found in Webster's. Wealthy to them refers to people who have an abundance of material possessions.

We define wealthy differently. We do not define wealthy, affluent, or rich in terms of material possessions. Many people who display a high-consumption lifestyle have little or no investments, appreciable assets, income-producing assets, common stocks, bonds, private businesses, oil/gas rights, or timber land. Conversely, those people whom we define as being wealthy get much more pleasure from owning substantial amounts of appreciable assets than from displaying a high-consumption lifestyle.