Friday, July 29, 2016

The Amway Dream Stealers?

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

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

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

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

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

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


Based on these definitions, I do not see how it is possible for anyone to steal a dream. This dream stealing verbage is just more upline propaganda designed to get IBOs to shut off their critical thinking skills and to blindly commit themselves to buying more standing orders and function tickets, whose profit goes into the pockets of your beloved upline leaders. It the the upline's concern likely because the upline is selling dreams! Selling unrealistic dreams of retiring and walking the beaches of the world. Dreams that will never come true for the vast majority of IBOs.

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

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Amway Walk Away Income and Other Myths?

One of the things that many IBOs mistakenly believe is that they will build their Amway business and then they will have the ability to "walk away" from the business while the income continues to flow in. I believe if there was such an incredible benefit such as lifelong residual income that could be achieved from Amway, I'm fairly certain that Amway would advertise this as a benefit of being an IBO. But Amway does not. It is very likely that your LOS such as BWW, WWDB or one of the others will promote this benefit while telling you that your best chance to achieve it is by subscribing to their "system".

One thing that goes unnnoticed all too often is that there seems to be nobody who is actually retired and living off the efforts of having built a big Amway business once upon a time. Seems that even the crown ambassadors still have busy lifestyles running from function to function and participating in other business related activities. A couple of crowns recently died while still on the job. While many of these leaders may claim they love their downlines or some other bunk, it is my belief that these leaders keep working their Amway businesses for one reason only. That is they need to keep working in order to keep the income flowing in. If people are retired from Amway residual income, where are they?

The diamond lifestyle that is often portrayed may seem like a great goal or dream to achieve, but the fact of the matter is that a "diamond lifestyle" cannot be sustained on diamond income. The average diamond, according to Amway, earns about $150,000 a year. While that may seem like a great amount of income, it's not nearly enough to sustain the kind of lifestyle portrayed by diamonds. Even if that income is supplemented by income from the sale of tools, you can't fly your family around the country first class to do all kinds of functions and still end up with much leftover to own fancy homes and cars.

If I deposited $1000 in the bank and never touch the money, the bank would pay me a certain amount of interest each year, guaranteed. That is residual income. In Amway, you can basically earn income in two ways. You can sell products for a profit, but there are problems with this. First off, Amway products in general are more expensive than local retailers. It is why you hear so many justifications about quality and concentration, because you are hard pressed to argue cost. Secondly, you are severely restricted from advertising, thus selling can be difficult. The other way to generate more income is to build a downline in hopes that the downline will help you to leverage your volume. But then your downline will have the same problem that you had in moving products. That being said, even if you achieve some level such as emerald or diamond, your business will immediately begin to fall apart once you stop working because attrition will take its toll. It is why there are hoards of "former" platinums. If platinums are not sustainable, then neither is any other level, including emerald or diamond.

There are many many instances of diamonds quitting, resigning, or falling out of qualification. People come and go in this business every day. Do you really think you can bank on retirement and residual income under these circumstances? If you believe that, I have some swamp land in Florida to sell you.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Chance Of Success In Amway?

One thing that many Amway promoters don't like to talk about is what your realistic chances of success are. I will define success as Diamond because that is what the outcome of the 6-4-2 and 2-5 year plan. Of course you may be able to earn some income at lower levels, but my understanding is that diamond is where the real money from Amway and the tools start rolling in. And I can also understand why people promoting Amway do not discuss your realistic chances of winning. Afterall, lottery promoters do not show you the millions of losers, they only parade the winners in front of you.

Many people, including Amway enthusiasts will agree that many IBO do little or nothing. Some people never even place an order or make any attempt to do any business. For the purpose of this article, I am not speaking about these folks. I am talking about people who actually put in some effort to the business.

For many people who want to make an earnest effort, they will purchase and hopefully sell a few items with the goal of reaching 100 PV. For that effort, you will receive approximately $10 from Amway and whatever profit you might have earned by selling products. Here's the catch. You will likely need to pay website fees in excess of the $10 you earn from Amway. For the more dedicated IBOs, you may be payin for voicemail, standing orders, book of the month, and possibly attending functions. These expenses will exceed your income month after month unless you are able to increase your volume by selling enough products and/or sponsoring downline who buy and sell products.

Because Amway has to include the IBO bonuses in their prices, the products come at a premium price. Thus sales to non IBOs are relatively low. Without sales to non IBOs, the only other way to generate more volume is to sponsor people who will buy and sell products. But due to past unethical IBO behavior, getting people to see the Amway sales and marketing plan may be a challenge. Also, most IBOs are unable to sponsor a single downline.

Some Amway enthusiasts will claim that if you do their CORE steps for 2-5 years consistently, that you are likely to succeed. Sounds easy, but because of the factors I have identified, some of these steps are impossible to do consistently. It's not like walking a mile each day where you have control of the steps. People will likely fail in showing the plan and sponsoring others because they cannot find enough people who are willing to see an Amway plan. Many, possibly most other IBOs can and will do certain steps consistently such as listening to a CD daily and reading a success book. But because of a spotty reputation in the US, IBOs will very likely fail to be able to show enough plans to succeed.

Your realistic chance of success? My informed guess is less than 1 tenth of 1 percent. That's the likelihood of going diamond. Your chance of going platinum? According to Amway's disclosures, it's .26% or about 1/4 of 1 percent, or 1 in about 400. If you think you can beat those odds, go for it. For most people, it might be wise to look into other opportunities.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Amway Upline And Downline Failure?

One of the disturbing things I have noticed about Amway IBOs and IBO leaders is how they wlll tell downline to trust them. To trust them as they have already blazed a trail. No need to re-invent the wheel. Just ride the coattails of your upline to success. The system is proven. Many IBOs take this to heart and put forth tremendous effort. Then when they fail, upline will shun them and tell them that the failure is their own. That they are personally responsible for failure.

Now I am not talking about IBOs who sign up and do nothing, or never place an order. I do believe that the fact that many IBOs sign up and do nothing brings concerns about how these IBOs were recruited, but I do not recall ever seeing an IBO do nothing and then complain that Amway was a scam or anything like that.

I have found, however, that many people who are critical of Amway and the systems, put forth much effort, did everything they were told, and did not find the success that upline promoted, or in some cases, guaranteed. My former sponsor is still active, last I heard and has been in Amway for over 20 years. I do not believe he has ever gone beyond platinum, and I know that he was never a Q12 platinum. Some Amway apologists might see being a platinum as a bonus, but when you are hard core sold out to the systems, platinum is a break even proposition. A study in Wisconsin, while dated, looked at the tax returns of the top 1% of IBOs in Amway and they had an average net loss of $900 annually. Factor in that time spent by a single or husband and wife and these folks are breaking even or taking losses. Is this the dream that will allow you to buy mansions with a cash payment?

What is also disturbing is how people will tout the system as responsible for any success, but hide the vast majority that the system doesn't help. Sure, some will succeed in Amway, but for every success, there are hundreds if not thousands who fail. And if you consider diamond as the benchmark of success, the failures could be in the millions. As I said, some succeed, but very very few in relation to the number who try. Going diamond is probably less common in the US than winning the lottery.

Succeed and the systems and upline take credit, but fail or quit and it is your own responsibility. Are these the kinds of leaders or mentors you want advice from? I will pass.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Why Amway Sucks?

In my opninion, Amway sucks. I'm speaking from direct personal experience as I was an IBO. I was considered an up and coming IBO leader. I got in and got to work and sponsored a bunch of people and I moved up the ranks from 0 PV to 4000 PV. I was "changing pins" at the functions and even got the notice from the upline diamond as I was able to attend some "special" meetings and board plans with the diamond. That was all nice and seemed exciting because spending time with the diamond was coveted by many by experienved by few. A large part of why my business was growing was out of excitement. My group was growing and I figured I would "go direct" in the near future.

But I finaly figured out that Amway sucks. Now what does that mean? Well, I always had some suspicion about the functions and although the diamonds lied about making no profit on tools and functions, I figured that money had to be made in these big functions where more than 10,000 were in attendance. I started askiing questions and my upline swore that nobody made money. That profits were channeled back into helping IBOs. I used to wonder what that meant since they always seemed to be pushing the tools on us pretty hard.

Aside from my suspicion of the tools scam, I noticed that even though I was movng more volume, I still made no net profits and actually sustain losses when the major functions came around because of the tools and the functions expenses. I live in Hawaii so certain functions required us to travel by air and to pay for hotels, rental cars, etc. I started to calculate in my head and came to the conclusion that even going platinum wasn't going to result in me netting a profit. That's when I started to think about my involvement in Amway.

I started to honestly assess things and was able to admit that the products costed way too much and they weren't "special" as we tried to promote them. The tools seemed scammy but I didn't find out the entire truth until I had left the business. Even as a growing up and coming IBO, there was no money there, despite upline asurances that there would be. My upline also demanded to be consulted for things like purchasing a car, dating someone, or buying a home. I presume it's because they don't want you to waste your money on a car or a girlfriend when you could be buying more cds or function tickets. The final straw came when my sponsor told me to dump my girlfriend because I could build the business faster as a single (that girlfriend and I celebrated our 20th anniverssary recently).

When my sponsor told me that, I up and had a meeting with my group. I told them what had happened to me, I explained all my suspicions and that I had decided to quit. As a result, my sponsor has blown out a 4000 PV leg. All but 2 of my downline quit with me so my sponsor did not qualify as platinum and I don't think he ever regained his platinum ststus. Overall, IMO, Amway sucks. The products are average with a premium price and there's no money for the rank and file. The only ones making money are the ones who speak on stage and get a cut from the tools and functions. The rest are just "slaves" helping to build the pyramid.

In a recent and possibly landmark ruling, the FTC basically hammered Herbalife. WHile they did not pursure closing the business as a pyramid, Herbalife has a great number of restrictions that prevent pyramid like actions. They will be monitored against income claims at their functions, and they must prove that they have actualy non affilaited customers. It wil be interesting to see if Herbalife survives these new rules and to see if Amway will also be subject to them later. Stay tuned.....

Friday, July 22, 2016

Amway And The "Rich Dad"?

Based on my experience in Amway, my blogging experience, and observation of other people who give financial advice such as real estate gurus who teach you to buy property with no money down, or others such as Robert Kiyosaki for that matter, all show testimonials of sucessful people. Obviously they do not show you the vast majority of people who try their systems and fail. I believe failure is the norm for people using these system, although they will show off the rare successes and pass them off as the norm.

It is my informed opinion that whether it is Amway, WWDB, BWW, N21, real estate or the cashflow business, the vast majority of people who try these systems do not make any kind of significant income. Sure, some do, and those are shown as the possibilities. But if you watch infomercials, you will see in small print on the bottom of the screen, "unique experience", your results may vary. I believe that a similar message used to be at the end of Amway diamond recordings as well. If success is a unique experience, then what is the typical experience? The typical experience is probably a loss.

These systems in general do not work for various reasons. Many people simply do not have the acumen to work the system. Or the system has too many variables for the system to work, or the system calls for things beyond your control. For example, success in Amway generally requires you to sponsor others, something that is beyond the control of most people. Add in the lazy and people who are hoping for a quick score and it is understandable that most will fail. But these systems are often set up where the majority simply cannot all succeed. Nowhere is that more true than the Amway business where the pyramidal compensation plan nearly guarantees failure for the lower level IBOs. In multi level marketing, many comp plans are set up just that way. You need the lower levels to work and eat losses so you can profit. It's shown quite apparently when you the plan, such as Amway's 6-4-2 plan. Just a cursory review of Amway's common 6-4-2 or other similar version plans show a few prospering and the masses are not.

So what can someone do? Well, it may no be as sexy or attractive but a part time job and investing and saving might be something to think about. Even a part time business where you focus on selling products for a profit might work. It just seems prudent to avoid these "systems" as the primary beneficiary of these "systems" are the ones who directly profit from them.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Opposing Views Of Amway?

One of the things I find curious and humorous at the same time is how people who defend Amway often will not allow opposing viewpoints on their Amway propaganda blogs and forums. They will post an article and allow no comments or will not allow comments unless their are positive and paint a rosy picture about Amway. Amway's biggest defender IBOFightback, banned me from his truth about amway blog/forum for no reason. In fact I posted only two comments there in years and both were respectful and truthful, yet he felt my presence needed to be excluded from his blog perhaps because the truth itself is negative about Amway. I suppose though, that David Steadson's (IBOFB) lack of credibility (in my book) makes the banning a minor issue. His website is filled with pro Amway folks who back up Amway, even bad practices at times. I guess when you see the world through rose colored glasses. you don't see the reality.

I also had an exchange not too long ago with an IBO via email. He also runs a pro Amway blog but hasn't been active recently. He doesn't allow comments on his blog unless they praise Amway. I just don't understand why the need to put spin on the truth. It is a fact that the average Amway IBO earns very little and that most IBOs make little or nothing. Many who participate in the training sessions end up losing money. Those are tidbits that match up with my experience. It is usually former IBOs who can verify this claim. Seems that current IBOs do not admit they are losing money. As an IBO, I was taught "fake it till you make it". That suggests that you appear successful until you actually go diamond or whatever. In the end, a pig with lipstick on it is still a pig.

Joecool allows opposing views on this blog. Even some comments that are critical of me are allowed. I even had some (I presume) IBOs who left threats on this blog. I suspect that one or some of them also sent me threats via email. Still, I allow most comments on here. I do not allow racist or extremely hateful comments, or comments with spam. I have nothing to hide when it comes to my views on Amway. So what do Amway apologists and IBOs have to hide? Would it be damaging to have the truth on your blog or forum? Is the internet already inundated with negative Amway information and comments?

I believe Amway is partly to blame. The AMOs (Amway Motivational Organiztions) such as Network 21, WWDB or BWW are the ones who say and do unethical things. Amway is the only entity who can take action against these groups but it appears that substantial action is lacking and therefore, these groups continue to teach bad business practices which filter down to many IBOs and contributes to Amway having a bad reputation. I guess Amway is sleeping in the bed they made. Until some bad practices are stopped or corrected, there will continue to be people who had a bad experience in Amway. It is what it is.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Your Amway Bottom Line?

In my point of view. one of the most critical mistakes that many IBOs make is to ignore the bottom line when analyzing their Amway businesses. (Many IBOs don't even analyze their businesses) Most business building IBOs, sadly, are taught by their uplines to ignore losses, or to view losses as investments into their businesses, or that money is really not important. Some upline may teach that the business is more about making friends or being a nicer person. All of these things may be nice side benefits of reading personal development books, etc., but when running a business, the only goal should be to turn a profit.

For many IBOs, their businesses consist of listening to standing orders, attending functions and meetings, but not focused on selling products and earning a net profit. And for most IBOs, nobody can blame them as upline may give them bad advice and because the Amway business is person to person selling, it is so inefficient that many groups end up teaching IBOs to simply buy their own volume and get others to join the business. For groups who operate primarily in this manner, you are probably running an illegal business because new and existing IBOs can profit only by continuing to add more downline IBOs in the hope that they too, will buy their own volume and sponsor others.

When you look carefully at the business plan, whether it is 6-4-2, 9-4-2 or some other variation, the majority of these business building IBOs will have low volume and likely to earn only about $10 a month. But to earn that $10 a month, you are likely to have to spend $300 on products, and if you are on standing order, voicemail and functions, then you likely spend anywhere from $150 to $250 monthly to participate in the teaching system. Thus these IBO's bottom line is a net loss! It is only when you are able to sponsor many downline that your losses will get smaller and you will only profit when you have a sizable downline. That means your bottom line is a loss. And while Amway defender will argue that Walmart doesn't even give you $10 a month, you can certainly get more products from Walmart for $300 than you can get from Amway for the same price. Walmart will match any advertised price on a product that they and a competitor may carry. Also, Walmart's advertising reaching millions of people, which is much more effective than person to person. While Amway runs some ads now days, they do not directly drive customers to IBOs. The vast majority of IBO business is still to themselves and their downline, and not to non IBO customers.

I challenge IBOs to look objectively at their bottom lines. It is likely a new loss. If it is, ask your upline how long this is expected to last. Set hard goals and if you are doing what is advised by upline and results to not improve, you may have to ask yourself what willl change to make your business profitable. Basically, if you aren't adding active downlines and customers regularly, you aren't gooing anywhere and are likely to be running your business at a loss month after month after month. It won't take long before you realize that you have lost thousands if not tens of thousands of dollars.

As a former IBO with a 4000 PV business with eagle parameters, I was not making a net profit. I saw my bottom line and although doing and achieving what my upline advised, there was no money. I decided the effort, time and money invested wasn't worth it. Plus my upline started to interfere in my personal life. I saw my bottom line and wasn't satisfied, and I left Amway. I later discovered the lies my upline had fed me to keep me in the business and to keep me buying tools. It is why I started blogging. For now, my bottom line is to get the truth out about the tools scam run by upline. That is Joecool's bottom line.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

8-12 Hours Per Week = Financial Freedom?

One of the big myths that upline used, and likely still perpetuate is the claim that you can build an Amway mega empire on 8-12 hours per week (Some say 10-15). 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 or anything else that might require real effort. But let's take a closer look at this 8-12 hours per week.

If you listen to one (1) cd per day (approximately one hour per CD) as recommended by upline and read one of their "success" books 15 minutes each day, you are 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 income. 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? Again, prospects need to think about which activities will make you money or cost you money.

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, these 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. They tell you that their system is foolproof and that you will make it if you don't give up. Not true. The longer you "play" Amway, the more you will lose.

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 and upline. Most people chalk it up as a life lesson and do not complain or are so ashamed that they fell for the scam that they slink away and never speak about it again.

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. That would be very far fetched. The number of highly successful Amway IBOs versus the number who sign up can be compared to lottery winners. And to win the lottery, you just buy a ticket. You don't have to deceive other people, including your family and friends.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Getting Rich and Walking The Beaches?

So many IBOs apparently get involved in Amway because they are under the impression that one day they will get rich. That much is clear. The uplines are smart enough, though, to say the right thing such as Amway is not gt rich quick. By doing this, the new IBOs or prospects can think they are in a legitimate business because they have been told it is not a get rich quick scheme. In fact they may even be told that Amway is hard work. But the bottom line is that they must have been told they will eventually get rich or that they willl make it if they will only follow the system.

By saying that Amway is not get rich quick, the upline can also hook you into the tools systems for several years. They will say you need tools, just as a carpenter needs a saw and a hammer. But an Amway IBO's role is simple. Sell products, buy products, sponsor downline. You wouldn't need a 500 page manual and a bunch of cds to learn how to turn on a television would you? Yet so many people get sucked into functions and standing orders under the false idea that these are investments into your business. But still, people will do this because they have been sold on the idea that they will eventually get rich in Amway. 2-5 years to achieve financial freedom seems like a get rich (quick) scheme to me.

I may be repeating some of these questions ad nauseum but it should reveal an answer that IBOs and prospects need. Where are the people who built their business right in 2-5 years and chose the option of walking away and njoying financial freedom while the money keeps rolling in? In over 50 years of existence, I don't know of anyone, save for Amway's owners, who can walk away and have significant income. Also, If this were an IBO benefit, why doesn't Amway list this as a benefit? Maybe it doesn't exist? Maybe it's just a myth?

Do you really believe that all the diamonds could be anywhere in the world with anyone they choose, but they simply choose to be at your function because they love you? Isn't it more likely that all those diamonds at your function are there because they love your money (from ticket sales)? Seriously, if all the diamonds could be walking the beaches of the world with unlimited money rolling in, I'm sure some of them would choose that option instead of being in Edmonton or Portland for a Dream Night in January.

If you believe you truly will get rich in Amway, remember that Amway says the average active IBO earns $200 a month gross income. If you do get rich in Amway one day, you;ll have many downline losing money in order for you to be successful. Can you get rich in Amway? For most I seriously doubt it. You are more likely to fill your garage with stuff and lose money from attending functions than the possibility of getting rich in a person to person business.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Amway Diamonds Are Illusionists?

One of the things my upline taught us ad nauseum was that we needed to have faith in our business and in our upline. That we needed to believe that we were going to be successful. IBOs are told that they should act successful even if they are still working their way up the ranks in the business. It is why they ask (require) IBOs to wear suits and business attire to all meetings and functions. This is one of the weird quirks about the business in my opinion. I live in Hawaii and I remember a function they held in the middle of July in a high school auditorium and there was no air conditioning. I think my suit needed special cleaning because it was completely saturated with persiration.

Anyway, with this part of the year, soon there will be thousands of IBOs shuffling off to a function called dream night, or in some cases, winter conference. The tickets are about $60 to $80 and includes a dinner. What IBOs are often unaware of is that many venues will allow you to run these conferences for $20 to $25 per person. The rest of that ticket prices goes directly into your upline's pockets. Anyway, the dream night function will feature slide shows of mansions, yachts, jet skis, sports cars, fabulous vacations and other trappings of wealth.

What many IBOs don't realize is that this display of wealth is just that. There is no bonafide evidence to indicate that these diamonds actually own all of those toys and goodies. The diamonds probably won't verbally confirm it either, because these toys and goodies may not really be owned by them. It could be rented, or maybe some upline corwn ambassador may own the mansion, but IBOs will assume that these trappings of wealth are common once you reach diamond. As an IBO, I never actually knew how much a diamond really earned. I just assumed it was a lot because we were shown all of these goodies and just assumed all diamonds had these kinds of lifestyles.

If I posted a picture of a mansion and a jet and said I owe it all to my earnings as a blogger, people would cry foul, that I am lying or making things up. And they would be right. Well, I would guess that many diamonds are doing the very same thing if they appear on stage and implying that they have jets and mansions. As I said, someone may own a mansion and a jet, but to imply that this is a part of the typical diamond lifestyle is a stretch. The evidence is there. Some diamonds have lost their homes to foreclosure. My old LOS diamonds (WWDB) taught us that diamonds pay cash for everything, including homes. Now confirmed as a blatant lie. Who knows what else they may have misrepresented?

I ask IBOs and prospects who may be attending dream night, to watch with a critical eye. What is being implied with the display of wealth? Analyze if those goodies can be purchased with a diamond income ($150,000 plus some tool income). Ask yourself if this lifestyle is truly sustainable? Ask yourself if you can live with yourself if deception is a part of earning your diamond lifestyle?

Thursday, July 14, 2016

The Amway Business?

There are some folks who try to sell the Amway opportunity as one that works in a good or bad economy. The pitch might be that people need household products such as soap or cleaners even in a good or bad economy. While that may be true, in a tough economy, people will be looking for the bottom line, or the cheapest price. That is why Walmart is wildy successful. Walmart's slogan is "live better, save money". Being that Walmart sales exceed 400 billion dollars, it means that one day's sales exceeds Amway's annual sales. Clearly, price is important to consumers. Amway apologists like to cite that not everyone buys a Porsche or a Lexus. While that is true, it is ridiculous to think Amway products are a Porsche or Lexus compared to other household products, and that consumers in general, even care about issues like that. What do IBOs do? Brag that their laundry soap is better than their neighbors?

Another silly tactic that some Amwayers employ is to drop names such as Robert Kiyosaki, or Warren Buffet, or Donald Trump. The fact of the matter is Robert Kiyosaki makes him money from Network Marketers, not from Network Marketing. Or, he's selling the IBOs books and seminars. Warren Buffet and Trump apparently own MLM companies, thus they also profit FROM network marketers and not from distributing the good themselves. It's a silly argument and anyone with some discernment can see right through it. I even see rumors spread by some IBOs that various movie stars or celebrities are involved in Amway. The truth is that there are some celebrities that are involved with Amway, but typically, they are paid to endorse Amway rather than being rank and file IBOs.

That brings us to whether Amway is a viable business opportunity. Let me put a disclaimer that people who may try to sell goods without participating in the training system might have a chance to make a few dollars, but these folks are quite rare. Many people get drawn into going diamond and chasing a dream. It is why you see big functions and conventions of people chasing dreams that likely won't come to pass. The typical IBO doesn't do much, if anything at all. Out of those who actually put in effort, a fraction of 1% might go platinum and an even smaller fraction of 1% might make some money. Amway's own numbers and the plan shown by many IBOs confirm this. Amway says the average "active" IBO makes just over $100 a month. We also know that it takes about 100 IBOs or more to form a platinum group. We know that many IBOs do little or nothing. That already provides a clear picture that only a small percentage of IBOs can ever reach that platinum level where you might net a small profit, depending on your business expenses.

Factoring in the Amway reputation and you have a very tough business opportunity. Now Amway itself may have done good things, but IBOs themselves have ruined the Amway name. They have lied or tricked people into attending recruitment meetings, or they have called people broke or losers, and even now, there is an IBO who frequents this blog, claming to be in BWW, that slings muds and name calls this blog author. For these reasons, Amway is a very tough business to succeed in, regardless of your level of effort.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Are Amway IBOs "Fakes"?

One of the things I was taught as an IBO was to "fake it til you make it". I believe this is probably still true today, based on my interaction with and observation of IBO behavior. If you have followed the trials on various upline leaders such as Shores or Duncan and their financials, you can likely conclude that even the diamonds can be in financial difficulty. Some former diamonds who have left the business or quit have also expressed some similar sentiments.

But if you examine functions like "Dream Night", where the diamonds show off pictures of mansions, sports cars, boats and jetskis, you can conclude that the diamonds are implying that all of these goodies are a prt of their regular lifestyles, including the notion of waking up at noon and never having to work. I believe for most diamonds, this is just a facade, or an exercise in deception of the downline. I recall the diamonds urging the crowd to "come join us". Some IBOs want it so bad that tears roll down their cheeks as they watch the presentation. They honestly believe that 2-5 years working the system assures them of success.

The sad reality is that most IBOs, even with some hard work, will end up making nothing, or if fully engaged in the system of functions and cds and books, will end up with a loss. IBOs who stick around for a few years might see losses in the thousands or tens of thousands. All the while their upline may have been telling the group the perserverence is the key or that you will "make it" if you don't quit. Nothing could be further from the truth. There's no evidence that working hard and never quitting will result in anything but financial losses.

If diamonds and high pins are putting on a show, what about the average rank and file IBOs? I believe that many of them are also fakes. They may wear suits and talk about success, but ask one of them if they actually make a net profit and you'll get more excuses than answers. The typical answer will be that it's none of your business, or that their results are not indicative of yours because it depends on effort. This is just a diversion. If someone is promoting the opportunity and then flaunting a lifestyle that can allegedly be attained through the oppportunity, then the folks making the claim should be able to qualify their claims. It is normal in everyday business for potential business partners or investors to seek evidence or proof that the business produces what is being advertised. Why Amway IBOs believe otherwise is puzzling, but not surprising. I believe it is beceause many Amway IBOs are fakes, starting at the top.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

How To Lose Money In Amway?

Breakdown of CORE and why it doesn’t work. Here are the CORE steps. Some groups may have variations of CORE, but this is generally what many groups use:

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

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

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

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

Secondly, with high prices (on average) and with a spotty reputation, most IBOs are unable to retail products. Amway itself has admitted that less than 4% of Amway products are sold to customers (non IBOs). Thus most IBOs are unable to sell products, therefore they are not CORE, therefore upline will blame the IBO for failure..

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

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

Amway Success?

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. The more likely scenario is is an IBO making a few dollars a month while spending more than that on training. They are losing money but they think they are successful. The reality indicates otherwise.

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. The rate of success is comparable to a lottery, which is sad when you consider that Amway is not a game of chance.

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, July 11, 2016

Are Amway People Judgmental?

One of the things that my upline taught, and I believe is still taught today in various groups is that winners join Amway and losers do not. Or that you were a winner because you were doing something to better your financial future and those who didn't were losers. or broke minded. Of course the upline who said this had no knowledge about those who were not in Amway. Some of them may already have been financially sound or may have been doing something to better their financial future. I'm not sure why these uplines, who promote "positive", had to resort to calling people losers simpy because they did not agree that Amway was the greatest thing since sliced bread. It's only positive if it's Amway related and anything non Amway is negative. Anyone see a problem with this?

In many games or sporting events, there will be someone or a team that wins the game and someone or a team that loses the game. Losing a game doesn't make you a loser and certainly, a team that wins the game would not say the losing team were losers. Can you imagine a Superbowl winning team's coach taking the podium after a game and saying his team won because the other team was a bunch or broke minded gutless losers? That would never happen, yet we see that frequently in the Amway/IBO world. The owner of Amway, Rich DeVos had once said in a recorded message that just because people do not agree with you (paraphrased) about Amway, does not make them losers and that IBOs should not call people losers. I believe this has been crafted by upline to apply pressure to downline IBOs to "never quit'.

In all of this, people's jobs are also criticized. That a job stands for "just over broke" or "jackass of the boss" and other insults. Many IBO's goals and dreams consist of ditching their job so they can sleep until "the crack of noon" and live a life of luxury. Ironically, it is most IBO's jobs that continue to produce income so they can pay their bills and feed their family. It is also an IBO's job that funds their Amway and AMO expenses such as product purchases and functions and voicemail, etc. Without having a job, most people could not even join Amway or pay for any tools. Sadly, most IBOs won't make any money in Amway either, and will have to continue to work at their jobs. I do not believe that someone earning an honest living working a job is a loser. Ironically, many of the folks calling people losers and broke are not even netting a profit from their Amway business!

Yes, in this business or the sports world, there will be winners and there will be losers. The question is whether you are the one who is allowed to be the judge of who is and who isn't. I would also suggest that IBOs are completely shutting down potential future business by their behavior. What if I went to a store to purchase something but the item was not available on that particular day, so I don't purchase anything and leave. As I leave, the store owner says I am a loser for not buying something there. Will I go back? Very unlikely. If an IBO truly sees themselves as a store owner, all prospects should be seen as potential business, whether future or present. If your upline tells you that people not interested are losers, you should hand him a mirror. Or inform your upline that when you point a finger at someone, there are even more fingers pointing back at you.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Amway Financial Freedom?

Financial Freedom! That was one of the major battle cries when I was recruited for the Amway business. You gain control of time and money by creating residual or passive income. That is true financial freedom. You wake up at noon, no job, and just do whatever you please, whenever you please. I remember the speaker saying that broke/unemployed people also had freedom, but it was different because they were broke and could not afford to go golfing or do other activities that required money on a regular basis. I wonder sometimes how often the diamonds enjoy such fun and frivolity? My upline diamond always seemed to be working.

I am assuming that this is still the case for many IBOs. Of course, upline leaders may toss in a disclaimer that you don't get rich quick as an IBO, but the pitch apparently still contains the financial freedom and residual income theme, based on my experiences with IBOs. IBOs still think they will be rich. Also, 2-5 years sounds like "get rich quick" to me. Diamonds are likely cautious to avoid get rich quick talk because prospects may be way about those kinds of claims.

But hey, financial freedom would be a great thing, don't get me wrong. Who wouldn't want to be 35 years old with enough cash to never have to work again? I mean I could spend some time imagining how fun that would be. It would also be fun to imagine what you would do with all the cash if you hit the powerball lottery as well. But for the starry eyed IBOs, I simply have a few questions for you to ponder. A few realistic questions that you should be asking yourself. The answers to these questions will tell you a lot.

1. Who in your group or upline truly has achieved financial freedom? Have you seen their financials or simply a display of wealth such as slide shows of mansions and fancy cars? Mansions and fancy cars could just be a massive pile of debt. Not too long ago, there apparently were diamonds who had their homes foreclosed, and a triple diamond who was in chapter 7 bankruptcy proceedings. Find out if anyone in your group/upline has actually achieved the success that they are using to recruit you. Also, if they are financially free, why do they work at function after function? Traveling and speaking might not be a traditional job, but it is still work, nonetheless.

2. Even if you find someone who is retired and golfing everyday because of Amway residual income, ask yourself what the likelihood is that you will be able to achieve the same results. If diamonds are still working, what chance do you have of success if you are new or inexperienced in Amway, and have few or no downline. More than likely, your chance of winning the lottery will be greater than your chance of achieving a significant residual income from your Amway business. Also, I don't know of any Amway retirees who built their business once and walked away with any significant residual income from Amway. Do you?

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Amway Dreams Or Fantasies?

One of the things that many IBOs are badly misguided on is the concept of dreams and fighting for dreams. A dream is basically a long term goal. Someone might dream about playing in the National Football League. To accomplish that dream, one might play high school and/or college level football. For most, the dream will end. No matter how much someone wants to play in the NFL, only so many people are proficient enough to be able to make the team. Even fewer are elite players that become stars. So while you might fight for your dreams, there is also an alternate reality.

In the Amway business, via the "systems" such as WWDB or Network 21, the leaders will often sell hopes and dreams to the downline. That the downline can be retired at the age of 29, walking the beaches of the world while the income just rolls in forever and ever. These kinds of "dreams" would be the same as hoping to win the powerball lottery. You may have seen a few who did it but the chance of you duplicating it is very unlikely. Slim to none is your chance in reality.

Another things uplines will often do is tell anecdotal stories about crabs keeping each other in a bucket when one tries to escape, or about monkeys preventing each other from grabbing bananas at the top of the pole. While the stories may be interesting and even true, it doesn't necessarily apply to the Amway business. While it is true that an IBO may have friends and family who are skeptical about Amway, it is with good reason. Many people have gone through the Amway business with no success. Many people have lost money doing everyting they were advised to do by upline. There is a track record of financial disasters associated with Amway and the attached "systems". It's not like there's a long list of people who have walked away from Amway with the cash rolling in and not a care in the world. Ever wonder why none of the crown ambassadors have exercised the option to "walk away"? In fact, two crown ambassadors dies in recent years, still working the business.

I think people should have dreams. I think people should pursue their dreams. I also think people need to know that certain dreams can come true. There also needs to be a degree of reality in their dreams. There will always be some inspirational person such as a "Rudy" who overcame great odds to accomplish a dream, but the untold reality is that there were probably many many young men who dreamed of playing for Notre Dame that year. Likely, no one else accomplished the unlikely dream like a Rudy. What I am saying is that earning a nice income and having the option of early retirement can be accomplished, but unlikely with an Amway business. You might be choosing to use Amway to accomplish your financial dreams and that is your right. But the reality is that very few people have made all their financial dreams come true due to the Amway opportunity, as compared to the tens of millions who have tried.

Keep fighting for your dreams, but keep in mind that you might need a plan B and a dose of reality.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Is Amway Used In A Bait And Switch Scam?

I believe Amway is used as a bait and switch scam by the diamonds and other higher up pins. They show off luxurious lifestyles, mansions, sports cars, jet skis and other displays of wealth. Most of us familiar with the pitch have heard the lines before. 2-5 years, part time effort, built it right, build it once. Do what we did, and you can have what we have (quotes from a diamond). Early retirement, making major purchases in cash, financial freedom. I mean, who wouldn't want that? Apparently, many do and are willing to give Amway a shot, even if they think their chances might not be good. I believe the same reasoning goes into increased purchases right before the powerball lottery numbers are released.

But the insidious part of the Amway business is that the diamonds lure people into the business under the pretenses that "anyone can succeed" or that everyone can succeed, but only if you follow their foolproof "system" consisting of cds, voicemail, books, seminars and what some call "the core steps". What is reall disgusting about this entire process is that so many good and talented people have come and gone through the system, only to fail, despite doing what they were advised or told to do by upline. My former sponsor for example, sponsored over 100 people and was uber hard core for many years. He peaked at platinum (non Q12) and fell back and has never reached that level again. It definitely was not due to a lack of effort or not doing things right.

My sponsor was not alone. I did what was advised and went up to 4000 PV, only to find that there was no net profit. I wised up and got out of the business shortly after that. The trully sad thing is that many people hang onto Amway because they feel like failures if they leave or that they have no other hope of financial success without Amway. This is also a byproduct of upline teaching that most of us have no chance to be financially successful without Amway. Ironically, the vast majority of people would be no worse for wear or better off without any brush with Amway. Most people snap out of it quickly, but some people bite hard like my former sponsor, who is still toiling away after more than 20 years. What's worse is my sponsor was/is a physician and he is probably farther away from financial freedom than most people is a similar occupation.

So in summarizing the scam, the diamonds lure people into Amway with great displays of luxury and wealth. They say that anyone and everyone can possibly achieve the same by following their system and by participating in their tools system (cds, books, seminars). What ticks me off is that these hucksters claim all the credit for any tiny amounts of success, but blame anything less than success on the individual. They'll call it personal responsibility. These diamonds are liars and cheats. They have never been held acocuntable for the failures of even the most earnest of IBOs who followed their system. The excuse being that the IBO did not work hard enough or they didn't do thing exactly right. That is total BS.

The vast majority of people fail in Amway because Amway is designed that way. Their common 6-4-2 plan consists of 79 IBOs. One is a platinum and the rest are not. When you consider that these 79 IBOs are all active and receiving bonuses, this is not a realistic group. A more realistic group will be 200 or more downline IBOs. Many doing little or nothing and the rest scraping up enough PV to make someone a platinum. Thus one of of two hundred is one half of one percent. That's about the going average of success for someone reaching platinum, and this was confirmed on Imagine the rate of success for diamond? Itls a tiny fraction of one percent. And that's just to reach diamond, not to maintain it.

Come join Amway and get rich. That's the pitch. The reality is the diamonds and above are getting rich selling their downline training on how to success in Amway. A classic bait and switch scam. The tools business is the "real" business with higher profit margins than Amway products and less people sharing in the profits. Amway is just the front for the tools business to exist. I believe this post clearly explains how Amway is used as a bait and switch scam. Beware!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Is Lying Needed To Succeed In Amway?

It is my opinion that lying is a required skill in order to make it big in Amway. Before you go all crazy and disregard what I"m saying, let me explain why.

When I was an IBO, diamonds told bold faced lies (I was an IBO in 1997). Back then, the internet was not nearly as accessible as it is now and looking up things was a different task than it is now with google or yahoo. So the WWDB diamonds stood on stage and swore that NOBODY made a cent on tools and functions. We were told that WWDB was a non profit organization and that any profits made were simply re-invested back into the company to reduce the cost of future events and functions (which never happened). Without easy access to information, most of the audience believed the diamonds. We had no reason to doubt because they "told us" that they had our best interests at heart.

Looking back, those lies were the tip of the iceberg. The diamonds told many lies. They more than likely lied about how much income they made from Amway and I'm certain some of them lied about paying for everything they own in cash. They lied about WWDB having a nearly non existent divorce rate compared to the rest of the world. I'm sure they lied about the "trappings" of wealth they claimed to have. A few diamonds in the past,, had some financial problems such as home foreclosures and a prominent WWDB triple diamond filed chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2009 or so. When their financials became public record, we could see debt, unpaid taxes and other problems by people we thought were wealthy beyond our dreams. They were not.

The diamonds also taught the troops to lie and be deceptive about Amway to get people to see the plan or to entive them to sign up. My last blog post was titled "fake it till you make it", which is about lies and deception taught by upline to help downline to recruit potential IBOs. If the diamonds lie and teach lies to promote Amway, my conclusion is that lying is required in order to succeed in Amway. Apparently it is a trait that the diamonds I saw, possessed. Even after I quit, I heard numerous lies from IBOs denying that "Quixtar" had nothing to do with Amway, when in fact Quixtar was just a new name for Amway North America. Imagine a prospect asking someone why they were selling Amway products when Quixtar had nothing to do with Amway?

It is my conclusion that lying is indeed needed for Amway success. The better and more convicing the liar you are, the better you can recruit downline and advance in the Amway pay plan. If you dont believe me, name one person who was uber successful by being upfront and open about Amway and any related questions, such as how much they actually make in Amway and how much they make from tools. You will hear crickets more than you hear answers.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Fake It Till You Make It In Amway?

One of the things I distinctly remember being taught at an Amway WWDB function was to "fake it till you make it". I suppose this was to give the impression of being successful. It was said that you are going to be successful so you may as well act the part in advance. I believe this is taught today as well. IBOs like to make an impression on prospects so the want to appear uber successful. I found it humorous when these same IBOs were seen driving into functions with clunkers of cars.

Faking it is also a part of why Amway IBOs wear suits. They want everyone to be under the impression that they are in a multi million dollar business. Guess what? WalMart is a multi billion dollar business but their employees don't wear suits! The suits, particularly in Hawaii where I live, were impractical. I recall a function in an auditorium in August with no air conditioning, 90 degree weather and a close to 100% humidity. Well, you can imagine what that function was like. We had to fake it to pretend we weren't dying of heat stroke.

What I find really interesting about this is that I honestly believe the biggest fakers are probably the diamonds. This past year, all over the country, there were WWDB functions called "Dream Night". A function with a sit down dinner where the diamonds and other Amway heroes show off slide shows of mansions, jets skis, sports cars, exclusive golf club memberships, fabulous vacations, and shopping sprees. I honestly believe that many of the diamonds are the biggest fakers out there. A diamond income, which seems big, and supplemented with tools income, most likely cannot sustain the lifestyles portrayed in these functions. Simple math bears it out.

A diamond income, even with tool income might be $250 or $300K gross. While that mey seem huge compared to a working stiff who earns %40K or $50K per year, keep in mind that a diamond business has many expenses. How much do you think it would cost a (diamond) family of four (4) to travel to say 5 or 6 functions, first class? How much of that income goes to taxes? I challenge IBOs to sit down and figure this out. After taxes, medical insurance and business expenses are taken into consideration, I would guess that a diamond lives at best, a middle class lifestyle. Amway advocates will argue that this is sans a 9-5 job, but an Amway business needs constant attention as IBOs up and quit every day. Some who do sign up never do a thing. Replacing IBOs is a neverending task. It is why you do not see or hear of any diamonds who "walked away" to collect residual income forever and ever.

Diamonds may talk about all the "freedom" they have but I also believe they are faking it also. They are simply working the night and graveyard shift because they are working to help their groups recruit people into Amway and since many people work 9-5, the diamonds end up working 7 (pm) to 3 (am). My former upline diamond claimed he worked to help people succeed, but looking back, I believe he was working the night shift, because he had to. He needed to work to maintain his group, lest he fall out of diamond qualification. I can imagine the stress and pressure a diamond might feel if one of his downline platinum legs are close to dropping out of qualification. A majority of a diamond's income is in an annual diamond bonus which they would not receive without qualifying. The stress but be just like a job!

Here's another take on fake it till you make it. Isn't this simply lying and hoping you will one day succeed?