Monday, July 31, 2017

The Amway Game?

One thing my sponsor/mentor often told the group was that many of us were "playing" Amway. What he meant was that many people can listen to a tape or CD every day, read a success book 15-30 minutes each day, attend all the functions, use and/or sell 100 PV or more each month, but never make progress in the business. Basically what he was saying was unless you are showing the plan and sponsoring downline, you are just playing Amway. And while I agree, I honestly believe that most IBOs simply "play" Amway.

They can do most of the CORE steps such as listening to standing orders or cds each day. They can read every day and attend all the functions. They can even use and sell Amway products. But because of previous IBO behavior, many people cannot get anyone to see the plan, let alone sponsor others. Seems like everyone (at least in the US and Canada) know of someone who was lied to, or tricked into attending an Amway meeting. This alone has given Amway a shady reputation and just the mention of the name Amway can send people running. I was tricked into a meeting once, and as an IBO, I saw people get up, cuss and leave the meeting because they were lied to or tricked into attending a meeting based on the curiosity approach.

I do not believe that IBOs in general are dishonest or deceitful. I believe that most of them are probably motivated, wanting more in life, and hard working. But they are taught to duplicate or copy their uplines. I believe it is some of the tenured leaders who teach bad business practices that are duplicated and spreads a bad reputation like an infectious disease. I believe that because of this, Amway's North American sales tanked and now they don't even report the North American sales seperately from Global sales.

When you stop and take a deep breath, you see the signs of weakness and the chinks in the armor of the once untouchable and "divine" diamonds. We see diamonds suing other diamonds and Amway. We see diamonds losing their homes to foreclosure (so much for paying cash). A triple diamond was in chapter 7 bankruptcy and hoards of diamonds leaving their LOS along with their "awesome" mentors and lifelong friends to form their own LOS. Why is this happening? I believe it is because of greed. Why else would you leave a "mentor" and "lifelong friend" to start your own LOS? It's all about the money.

Sadly, while all of this goes on, most IBOs come and go, lose money and "play Amway" along the way. It truly saddens me that this has gone on for so long, and it looks like (in my opinion), that my former LOS, WWDB, seems to have been the worst of the bunch with no apparent improvement in the last 15 years or so.

You can "play Amway" hard, but you most likely won't make enough net profit to buy a value meal a McDonald's. Of course you are welcome to prove me wrong.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Amway Is Fair?

One of the silly and bogus things my upline taught us was that the Amway opportunity was fair. That it was a completely level playing field. On the surface, that sounds right because "everyone starts at zero". While everyone does start at zero, the compensation plan is unfair to those who "do the work" and in my opinion, should be revamped so lower level IBOs make more money. It would probably help with IBO retention and maybe, some higher level leaders wouldn't have to work so hard to keep replacing people who quit. If half or more IBOs quit each year, how can you build the business and a foundation for "residual income"?

If you are a new IBO, then you might not be really familiar with the Amway compensation plan. Amway pays out about 30+ percent of their gross as bonuses. Thus if you move 100 PV in goods, or about $300 in sales, then Amway pays out about $100 in bonuses. You as a new 100 PV IBO, would receive 3%m or about $10 and your uplines, some of whom don't even know you exist, will split up the remaining $90 in bonuses. It truly is not a case of doing the work and getting paid. You are doing the work so upline gets paid. To add insult to injury, upline wants you to purchase training materials that tries to convince you that this is a good deal.

And something very significant to think about. In what other sales profession are you compensated so low (3%)? I can only think of real estate, but in real estate, your sales are likely in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. In just about any other sales related profession, you get a much higher cut than 3%. Yes, your bonus or comission can be higher if you move more volume, but then you are likely receiving more money because you are now exploiting more people doing 100 PV who get only $10 back.

Even after you consider the unfair compensation, you must factor in the cost of tools. Most uplines promote tools (cds, voicemail, functions) as vital to an IBO's success. Some uplines push the tools harder than others. But the tools purchases will often be the primary cause of IBO financial losses because the cost of tools will normally exceed an IBO's bonus. It is very common in the US for monthly tool purchases to exceed $200 a month on average, and very very few IBOs will ever reach a high enough level in the Amway compensation plan to earn enough just to break even. Also, the tools apparently do not work. There is no unbiased evidence to suggest that tools have any causal relationship to IBO success.

With Amway's spotty reputation and the unfair compensation plan, IBO retention is spotty. Many IBOs sign up and do little or nothing, and many IBOs don't even last a full year before they quit. What happens is IBOs begin to figure out that recruiting downline is next to impossible and therefore, generating more volume is nearly impossible, even for individuals with skills. If you are a new IBO or a prospect, I encourage you to sit down and really look at the math and factor in the cost of tools. There are many ways to earn a dollar, I just don't feel that Amway is an efficient way to do that.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Amway University?

Many Amway IBOs justify their involvement in the system of cds, tapes, books and seminars by comparing it to college. They claim they need this education and that it is much cheaper when compared to a college or university. Of course this is the upline propaganda that IBOs are fed, much like the concept that a job is a bad idea. While college tuition has increased greatly in recent years, there are still ways to fund college in affordable ways. Sure, you may not get the college of your choice but you can still get educated. And it is a fact that college grads do better financially than non college grads.

In college, it is true that not everyone graduates, but approximately half of those who start college end up graduating. Those who do not graduate still benefit from their education on a year to year or course by course basis. When you are job seeking, a college degree will give you more options than those who don't educate. This claim cannot be made by Amway IBOs. The education an IBO receives by seminars and cds do not even equate to success in Amway, much less in other venues in life. Only a small fraction of IBOs ever reach platinum, which supposedly is the break even point. So as an IBO, you have less than one half of a one percent chance to break even as compared to approximately a 50% chance of graduating college.

Also, once you graduate and receive your degree/diploma, it is complete. Your Amway education is never ending. And it is never ending because your Amway education is a primary source of income for the emeralds and diamonds. How much training do you really need to buy, sell and sponsor downline, which is what the Amway business is about. Also, there are many many many examples of people who reached levels as high as diamond or above who could not maintain the level. There are also many examples of diamonds who quit Amway. If there were such a thing as "residual" income, why would anyone quit when they could sit back and watch the cash roll in. I think the answer is quite obvious. Amway residual income is a myth. It's like the legend of bigfoot. Everyone's seen and heard about bigfoot but nobody has ever proven that they exist. Anyone able to prove that there's a diamond who had 6 platinums and "walked away" from Amway to collect residual income forever?

There is also no evidence (as far as I know) that your Amway related education of cds and seminars actually work. The tiny fraction of 1% of successful IBOs is not a good case for arguing the success of the system. Colleges on the other hand, has accreditation standards, which is nothing like the ineffective Amway accreditation of groups such as BWW, WWDB or Network 21. People who argue that all the "successful" diamonds used the system is like arguing that the lottery is a good financial plan because I can prove that there are "winners". In both Amway and the lottery, the winners enjoy the winnings but the winnings come from the participants. Diamonds rake in the winnings from downline and lottery winners rake in winnings from all the lottery losers.

The fact that IBOs even dare to compare a college education to their teaching in Amway is a joke. Try telling a prospective employer about your Amway education and see what that gets you.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Decision To Go Diamond?

One of the silly things I see around some forums, and what I remember from my Amway days is hearing about how someone "made the decision" to go diamond. You cannot "decide" to go diamond anymore than you can decide to win the lottery. You can decide to work hard and you can decide to try and follow all of the recommended advice for achieving diamond in Amway, but you cannot "decide" to go diamond. Going diamond requires you to have certain group structures with certain volume requirements, which requires sponsoring. Sponsoring others is something that is not directly within your control. And it is certainly not under your control when you need multiple downline groups to sponsor people as well. Maintaining retention in your group is also something you may not have direct control over. All it would take is one downline group to have a falling out with a mass exodus and your qualification for diamond can vanish in a day.

One familiar theme I recall hearing on WWDB rally tapes is that someone, usually the man of the house, finally made a decision to go diamond. I don't recall a detailed explanation of what that actually meant. When I was prospected into Amway, my sponsor never could tell me in a straight answer what you actually do as an IBO. All he kept assuring me of was that I could be taught everything I needed to know. Looking back, he was right. In a nutshell, the Amway business is simply this: Buy, sell, and sponsor. But of the three components, the only one an IBO can directly control is to "buy". To sell or to sponsor is something that you have no direct control over because it involves the decision of other people.. Yes, some people can improve and get better at selling or prospecting, but I believe the vast majority of people, even those who work hard and give an earnest effort, simply do not have the skills to overcome the bad reputation of Amway and premium prices (for generic in nature products)that apparently stigmatize the Amway business.

As I have stated, you can decide to try Amway. You can decide to buy tools and products. You can decide to work hard and give your best effort. You can decide that this is a good opportunity for you. But you cannot decide that you will go diamond. Many have tried, very very few have made it. In my old LOS (WWDB), there are fewer diamonds now than when I was an IBO. And there have been very few new diamonds in the US and Canada. Even those who attain the apparent pinnacle of success (diamond), often find that maintaining the level is a near impossible task. There is evidence of many former diamonds and diamonds who actually quit. Where's the residual income that IBOs like to speak of? Why would someone quit if they can walk away and receive residual income. You know why.

Good luck to you if you "decide" to go for it.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Amway Residual Income Forever?

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 WWDB or one of the others will promote this benefit while telling you that your bext chance to achieve it is by subscribing to their "system". The sad reality will financial ongoing losses rather than income.

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 (if they are still alive) running from function to function and participating in other business related activities. 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. A diamond lifestyle is expensive after all.

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 (Non Q12 Diamond - the most common). 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. You also can't sell Amway products to retailers such as a WalMart. The only 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 because once you stop working, 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.

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.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Your Upline Secrets?

One thing that I was unaware of as an Amway 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 faced 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 finally admitted to audiences 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 (Amway says once a diamond, always a diamond). 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 allegedly 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 was told that nobody has ever succeeded without tools but I could try to be the first one. (Does that sound like tools are "optional?)

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 in 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. It's a cycle that just keeps going because the people who could make a difference do not.

How would you feel if your upline is touting themselves as a financial genius, 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 won't say they are perfect, but conversely, they should be held to the highest standards if they are using their status and touting morals as a means 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, July 19, 2017

Where Are The Amway Millionaires?

I keep hearing from Amway IBOs that they believe that Amway has created more millionaires than any other company in the US. I call BS on that claim. I am not saying that Amway hasn't created any millionaires, obviously, the Amway owners are worth billions of dollars. But what the IBOs are apparently implying is that all of the Amway diamonds are millionaires. I'm sure there are some diamonds who indeed are millionires, especially if they are tenured diamonds, in particular the double diamonds and higher. But conversely, I believe that many high level diamonds are not millionaires. I believe it is just as common for a diamond to be in debt as it is for a diamond to be living large. I also believe that many diamonds did not accumulate their alleged wealth exclusively from Amway. If a diamond is in debt trying to show off a diamond lifestyle, they are likely to have little equity in their belongings, and possible in debt trying to "keep up with the Joneses".

The reason why this is an issue is because these big pins will stand on stage and show off excessive wealth and imply that it is their Amway income that pays for these mansions, sports cars, and in some cases, jets. In the US, I attended a function called "Dream Night" where these kinds of trappings are displayed, to the tune of the song "I wanna be rich". The diamonds would say that you can have what they have, if only you will do what they advise. These functions still go on today and I believe it is no different now than it was when I was an IBO.

Stanley and Danko's book, "The Millionaire Next Door"

This book makes some very interesting points which I believe applies to Amway diamonds. I will outline the significant ones and I will comment below:

**Predictably, the data shows that most people who you believe to be very rich are not.

**High net worth individuals, statistically, tend to be people that live within their means. They don’t spend a lot of money. They don’t waste their money. They tend to be pretty frugal people.

**The authors point out that most of the richest people you know aren’t driving expensive luxury automobiles. That’s what the people who want everyone to think they’re rich drive.

Joe's commentary. The book does say that about 1/3 of millionaires acquired their wealth thru a J-O-B and saved and invested, but did mention that many millionaires were also un-extraordinary business owners, such as a pest control company, etc. But based on the points made by the book above, I can see where it is likely that diamonds portray a lavish lifestyle as a recruitment tactic, when the reality is they may be living very middle class lifestyles off stage, or may even be in debt. I have seen evidence of diamonds having their homes foreclosed and being in debt (Ruth Carter's book: Amway: Behind the Smoke and Mirrors). Recently, there was also a report that Triple Diamond Greg Duncan filed for bankruptcy. The report indicated that he could not make his mortgages, or something to that tune. Odd, because when I was in WWDB, some of the upline leaders said diamonds paid cash for everything because paying interest to the bank wasn't very smart.

My question is why IBOs continue to make up these claims? Try googling millionaire or Amway millionaire. There is nothing to indicate that Amway was responsible for creating the "most millionaires" of any US company. If this were true, wouldn't Amway use it as an advertising point? If you don't believe me, go and ask Amway yourself.

Monday, July 17, 2017

The Amway Warrior?

I received this comment by a fired up Amway and WWDB IBO two years ago. I think re-posting it now will be quite humorous. It might in interesting to note that I took "Bryant" up on his offer and friended him on facebook. After a week or two, he stopped responding to my comments and questions and a few months later, he unfriended me on facebook and apparently quit Amway. When I looked him up, he was not posting Amway stuff anymore and just reverted back to his "quitter" or Broke loser" lifestyle I am posting it for your reading enjoyment. BTW, I was downline of the infamous WWDB Duncans as an IBO. I wonder if Greg Duncan recovered from his chapter 7 bankruptcy in 2009?

Bryant Mxxxxx July 31, 2015 at 4:29 AM

Dear Joe,

First, wow do you sound like a quitter; have you ever dedicated yourself to anything? Sorry that was an attack at you, I’m new to WWDB, and I enjoyed reading your quitting words and how you inspired more quitters to quit. I personally have researched WWDB before I came to the WWDB group because I seriously thought it was Amway and I’ve been approached 5x by Amway. Guess being a cage fighter gives me a great personality.

I would also like to call you out on your line ups since I know the Duncan’s beside their children could never possible be your uplines. Brad is very selective on who he mentors and it is usually the non-quitters that he mentor, the diamonds and emeralds, My upline Fenton and Susie Eng are mentored directly by Brad and Julie.

Before I was a Dream Builder, I was chasing the money; I sold drugs, damn right, just like the cartel blood that flows thru my veins. I was proud to be a drug dealer, finally I was a cool person, and then I woke up and realized ever one fronts that they have money but no one really knows how to get it. I held a regular job, sold drugs and trained every day to fight in a cage. Wow my life was in utter chaos, then my best friend asked me to meet her sponsor and mentor, Jerry Liu and Fenton Eng (emerald mentor) so with one foot out of the door and my right ass check of the chair ready to bolt, I sat down and meet them. First there was never any offer made in fact I had an application process to go thru and win my mentorship which I am so glad and happy I fought for it. I guess we all come from different paths and what im really trying to say is I would love to sit down and speak to you face to face and prove that your wrong about world wide dream builder, I haven’t paid out a single cent and I’ve so far been receiving the Kate messages for free and haven’t need to buy a single thing, yes I will because that apart of this program.

Did you expect money to fall from the sky? If you would have listened to your mentor, you would have learned one of the key parts to this entire program. Without HARDWORK you get nothing. Hard work is the key that slipped past you obviously! I have permanently been changed by the world wide group and will defend WWDB with my dying breath that’s what it means to not quit and not give in. I would love you to meet ALL of Fentons teams, Las Vegas and Atlanta and Bellingham Washington. Everyone of them would look at you and shake their heads, you were in and I don’t understand how you could leave. Unless…wait for it….. you’re a quitter. Hmm I was tired of being a loser and a quitter to now I am a worldwide dream builder for life! Plus the Family Reunion blew my mind thank God I’m willing to sacrifice for my future, unlike some cooljoe who wrote this blog.
With love because we all make mistakes,

Bryant Mxxxxx find me on facebook I dare you!

Amway And The System?

Based on my experience in Amway, my blogging experience, and observations 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. They only show the best case scenario which might account of a fraction of 1% of the people who participate in their systems.

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, if any income at all. 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.

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 hoipng 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. People should also note that the common 6-4-2 Amway plan has 1 platinum with 78 downline. Most if not all of these downline will be losing money.

So what can someone do? Well, it may not 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. Do your due diligence!

Friday, July 14, 2017

The Road To Riches

When I saw the Amway plan, it was presented sort of as a road to riches. Yes, the presenter was careful not to say it was "get rich quick", but 2-5 years is relatively quick when compared with working 40 hours a week for 40 years as the business plan was shown to us. And while some exceptional people do achieve diamond, there is a trail of IBOs who suffer losses, some of them staggering. In our own group, I know of at least one couple who lost their home following upline advice, and another couple to ended up filing for chapter 7 bankruptcy. I must state that the bad advice leading to bankruptcy and foreclosure most likely came from upline leaders. I also know of a gal who quit her job to attend a function, faithfully following upline advice from WWDB. It took her a while to recover from that bad advice.

So what is the experience of many CORE IBOs? I'm not talking about those who "do nothing", but IBOs who actually make an effort. Well, if they do their 100 PV, then they are spending about $300 a month and dedicated IBOs will typically spend about $200 a month on average for tools. This is for a single person. A couple or family would be expected to do more, thus spend more. So for these 100 PV IBOs, they will expend about $500 a month and get back maybe $10. Of course if they were not in Amway, they would still have some expenses for household goods, but not anywhere near $500 a month.

Over the course of a few years, these expenses add up and can become staggering losses. Hard core IBOs might expend even more. The only way a rank and file IBO can gain relief is to sell products (which is difficult given the prices and the Amway name reputation) or to sponsor downline who wil then suffer some of the losses for you. It would be my estimate that an IBO might break even at about the 4000 PV level. However, at 4000 PV, you might have significant expenses associated with running a group, such as showing distance plans for your group.

Over the years, I would suspect that millions of IBOs have come and gone through the Amway opportunity, and probably lost billions of dollars. But many of those who lose money think they are successful, because many upline will edify those who buy tools, regardless of IBO results. After a few months, if your group and PV are not growing consistently, it is highly unlikely that you are headed for success.

IBOs and newbies, are you on the road to riches or financial disaster? Keep in mind that a net loss is not success, despite what you upline mentor may tell you.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Is Amway Your Hobby?

Many Anway IBOs get into the business with high expectations. They get in with oftentimes, a dream of early retirement, living a fabulous lifestyle, mansions, sports cars and "walking the beaches. In order to do this, IBOs are taught that they need to "plug into the system". So IBOs get on standing order, they attend all the meetings and functions, they read books and show the plan. They think these activities will make them rich. The sad reality is that it lines their upline's pockets.

But because the Amway business has so many handicaps and shortfalls, the IBO soon falls into the trap of "playing Amway". The IBO will do their 100 PV, either by self consumption or selling, or a combination of the two, and will continue to listen to the cds or tapes, and will continue to attend every meeting. When I was an IBO, our group had many who did not sponsor a single person, yet they were at all of the meetings and functions. These folks, in my opinion, had Amway as a hobby.

A hobby is something you do in your spare time, usually something you enjoy. For many people, Amway meetings are a social event. It is evidenced when some people say they enjoy the meetings, being with "positive people", and they have become nicer as a result of their involvement. While this may or may not be a side benefit of the functions and meetings, it is not relative to the bottom line of a business. A business exists to make money. If a business is losing money, expenses are usually cut.

If you have been an IBO for more than a month or two, have you actually sponsored someone? If the excitement of being a new IBO has not resulted in acquiring new downline, it is unlikely that you will ever have a downline. If you have been in the system reading books, listening to stnding order and attending functions and showing the plan, and you have no results, you have Amway as a hobby and not a business. Don't feel bad, sponsoring other IBOs is not a common or easy feat. But as a business owner, you should think about your involvement in the business and if you find you are participating in a hobby rather than running a profitable business, then you should decide whether or not you are accomplishing what you set out to do.

Are you running a business (to make money) or are you playing Amway?

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Amway IBOs Critical Of Jobs?

One of the things that IBO leaders do quite often in their recruitment pitch for Amway, is to put down people's jobs. They criticize people's bosses and the fact that an employee needs to report somewhere to earn a living. They try to paint the picture of a job being compared to slavery. They do this apparently to make people feel uncomfortable with their present situation so they will be open to looking at the Amway opportunity as a means to make a living. They may call a job "just over broke" or "jackass of the boss".

So I will ask - What's wrong with a job? A job is not slavery. People apply for their jobs and they agree to a wage or salary in exchange for their services. Certainly, you can leverage a higher wage or salary if you have an education or a skill, such as being able to work in the construction field. A job ususally offers more than just a wage. A job often allows one to have benefits such as medical insurance, a 401K retirement plan, and some other benefits such as paid vacation and/or sick leave.

A recent site visitor bemoans concept of working for minimum wage, where a husband and wife would earn in the neighborhood of 30K if they both work full time at minimum wage. Of course, a high school student can earn minimum wage so two adults only able to generate that kind of income makes me think my site visitor is speaking of people with very little to offer an employer. Most people may start out as entry level, but earn more and more as they gain experience and can offer more to their employer. An employee might also be able to promote themselves if they can prove to the employer that they can manage more responsibility.

What does the average Amway business owner experience? $202 a month (gross)income (which is probably way above average)? Most IBOs as outlined in "the plan" earn about $10 a month and may have expenses such as standing order which will take away from that tiny profit. Thus an average business building IBO stands to net a loss. It is very easy to look at the math and make that conclusion. A dedicated IBO attending meetings and functions and buying the other tools will likely spend more than $250 a month on average to be on the system. Couples will spend more. And that doesn't include the funds spent to do your 100 PV.

So I ask again. What's wrong with a job? You have a net gain each and every month, be able to pay for your living expenses, and allow you to contribute to society by paying taxes. The average CORE IBO is a drain on the US tax paying society by spending money on standing order and functions and then deducting these expenses when filing their taxes. The only beneficiary is the upline leaders who sell standing orders and function tickets. If the IRS actually took IBOs to task, I'd be interested to see what kinds of deductions would be not allowed? I bet it would help the US treasury to recover all that money.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Amway Phenomenon?

Other November 27 2011

"""I have read all of these posts. Interesting that everyone who supports Amway cannot spell very well. Lots of typos and grammatical errors in here by those who jump up and down reciting Amway's many virtues. It is a scam and a groupthink phenomenon of staggering proportions. From a psychological perspective, Amway does its best to separate people from those who would challenge its legitimacy and operations. This is not unlike how Hitler or any other leader would silence opponents or dissidents by having them "removed" from the equation. Same thing goes here, Amway teaches people to ignore and remove obstacles and people who challenge the system, even if said challenges are completely rational and offered by people with the IBO's best interest in mind. It hits IBO's in soft spots for family, friends, and freedom (the 3 F's), and it entices them to focus on emotional reasoning rather than very cognitive-based, rational dissection of information.

Amway IBO's are taught emotionalism, not rationalism. From a business perspective, it is a farce. IBO's are no entrepreneurs, as they wear the collars of their uplines. Over and over, I have been told to do as my uplines say. What if my upline is a total moron and I have a law degree and an MBA?? I'm supposed to follow these uplines?? According to the system, yes, the uplines' words are paramount. So no, IBO's are not entrepreneurs and do not gain any real experience. IBO is a fancy name for distributor, pure and simple.

I had the opportunity to meet a number of "diamonds" and "emeralds" recently, all of whom had either left the business to get real jobs or were still struggling bringing in about $30,000 per year. Many of them are posting massive losses, and by the way, the IRS does not consider pro-suming OR tickets to a convention (to hear Yager scream at you) to be business expenses. Good luck trying to recover those losses. It is a pyramid scheme simply because mathematically and considering the law of averages, a downline cannot really earn more than his upline. It just doesn't happen - it's a nice idea, but it doesn't happen. I worked through multiple scenarios with a friend, trying to see how I could out-earn my upline, and we found several variables that would keep that from happening.

Finally, on a personal level, this Amway monkey business cost me a great friendship, an IBO who decided that taking a chance on some crazy dream was more important than those who loved him most. I think he will continue prospecting and pushing "the plan" until there isn't anyone left. If you know someone in Amway or who is thinking seriously about it, you need to realize that they will soon be lost. Amway people are very much like crack users (very similar psychopathology, actually), and they will choose Amway over you, their family, their friends, and anything that gets in the way."""

Monday, July 10, 2017

How Amway Recruiters Suck You In?

It seems to me, that over the years, not much has changed about Amway. You can still find deceptive recruiting and some are more unethical than others. A common approach is the "curiosity" approach where the name Amway is not used and vague terms such as Ecommerce or other terms are used to get your interest up without saying the word "Amway". Upline will claim that this is to keep everyone's mind open so as to not have them reject the entire concept just because of the name Amway. If you are already using this tactic, you're already playing with fire as most prospects will find out anyway, and likely be upset that you were deceptive in recruiting them.

Another trick is to have prospects assume that their diamond or higher level pin is wealthy by showing picture of cars or mansions or maybe even a copy of someone's bonus check. This is bogus because nobody knows for sure who owns the cars or mansions and the check, while it could be large, can also be rare and it will reflect only a gross payment, not favoring in business expenses and other expenses such as taxes. My own paycheck would be much larger if I only showed the gross amount and not the deductions. I have yet to see a diamond offer to show anyone their profit/loss statement and the few that had to because of public bankruptcies or other reasons, didn't reflect the diamond lifestyle that is so heavily promoted at functions.

The opportunity is made to sound easy. Buy from yourself and get others to do the same. Maybe you'll hit up friends and family to sell some products. Well, to qualify for a minimum Amway bonus, you need to sell/buy 100 PV (points) and that will cost anywhere from $250 to $300 a month or more. And if you move your 100 points, you get back about $10. How many of you were already purchasing household goods and vitamins to the tune of $300 a month before Amway? Most likely nobody. But you do it because it's what is needed to succeed. After a month or more, the expense can become crushing, especially when Amway folks claim their products are concentrated and last a long time.

Additionally, Amway folks will tout a "foolproof" success system. Typically these organizations will be called WWDB (World Wide Dream Builders) or Network 21, or BWW, or one of the like. They are for profit third party companies that sell training materials designed to help you succeed in Amway. Your diamonds make significant income from selling you these materials. The sad part is that there is no documented track record of success for anyone following these systems. Amway's own stats show that only about 1 in 400 reach the level called "Gold" which is where you earn about the equivalent of full time minimum wage. And that's gross, not net income. A diamond is about 1 in 20,000 or so and many who reach diamond cannot maintain it. In WWDB, my old group, there are fewer diamonds today than when I was an IBO in the 1990s. That's food for thought.

The Amway opportunity is made to sound "doable" and reasonable, but when the rubber hits the road, you are trying to sell basically unknown generic quality products for premium prices and an IBO just cannot compete with retailers such as Costco or WalMart. To compound an IBO's problems, they spend money on training materials that cost them money but do not help them produce income, which is why the vast majority of IBOs make nothing or suffer losses. It is nearly assured that you will fail is you participate in Amway and the tool system.

But beware, it's not that hard to get "sucked in" by smooth talking pitchmen called diamonds.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

The Real Amway Business?

Many people, often young and motivated, see the Amway plan and get "fired up" and join the business. Most fizzle out before making any real effort or maybe they try but quickly become discouraged by the dismal but predictable results. And that's expected because in Amway, you are selling generic quality products at premium prices with a company that has a spotty reputation. Often times when you mention the word "Amway", people look is if to say "who farted"? If you don't believe me, why do so many Amway distributors use the "curiosity" approach to avoid saying the name "Amway"? There's a reason for that.

When I first saw the plan, I thought perhaps I could find some niche market where I would capitalize and sell products and make some tidy profits. But my sponsor told me that we were to basically use the products ourself and find like minded people to sponsor who will do the same. It sounded like reasonable advice and since people by human nature, do not like selling stuff, it made perfect sense to use this approach when prospecting recruits. After all, how hard can it be to use your own products and get others to do the same?

Well, the problem was that 100 points in Amway costs between $250 and $300. As a single person, I never spent that much on household and other types of products. So I found myself purchasing vitamins and other kinds of products that I never used before because I wanted to be "teachable" and to make sure I was a good example to my downline. After all, if I didn't do my 100 to 150 points, why would my downline right? So summing it up, the Amway business was about buying and using Amway products for myself and finding others to follow me. Easy enough right? What I never realized when I was in the Amway business was that Amway was just the "front" for thr real business. Sort of like how an Italian restaurant was the front for the mafia, who met in the backroom of thr restaurant.

What is the "real business"? The real business of the Amway leaders is to sell motivation and training to downline. They sell voicemail services, books, CDs, seminars, and other functions that are designed to "help you success in Amway", but in reality, are the real "jackpots" for the Amway diamonds. Voicemail is a monthly charge, along with a book of the month program, a cd subscription called "standing order", and meetings and seminars that have entrance fees. Every 3 months, there's a "major" function that will cost over $125 to attend. Selling these materials is the "real" business in Amway. This is where the diamonds and higher pins make their "real" money. Think about this carefully, there training and functions have a higher margin of profit than Amway products and with the Amway products, the entire distributor population gets to share in the Amway bonuses if they qualify. With the training amd motivation, only the platinums or "direct" distributors and above get any cut of the profits.

Let's look at a function I attended as an IBO. I attended a major function in California at a convention center. It was a two day function at a cost of $125. The function had about 20,000 people in attendance. That means the convention grossed about 2.5 million dollars. The cost for paid staff and convention center staff and security may have cost about $500,000, leaving literally millions for the handful of diamonds to split up. Say there were 10 speakers that weekend, that's a cool $200K per speaker. And that doesn't include the thousands of people buying all the other materials I mentioned such as a monthly voicemail and cd subscription. That doesn't include income from the monthly book subscription or the other on they but smaller functions. That's the "real" business of Amway diamonds. They make bank selling your training on how to succeed in Amway, even though Amway's own stats show that less than 1% of IBOs make any significant money.

So if you are planning to join Amway, at least know that you are nearly assured of failure, unless you get to the point where you get to profit from the function tickets and other false "success" materials sold by the diamonds.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Amway Sucks Because Amway Sucks?

I will admit that I was once upon a time, an Amway IBO, because a good friend of mine had joined and had qualified as a "direct distributor". I didn't really know much about it at the time but I knew it was a fairly significant level in the Amwya business. Sadly for me, my friend reaching that level was just a way to get me in the business because I had other friends who joined Amway and failed, all the while telling me they would become rich and would have to hang out with their "rich" friends. Of course they were back hanging out with us months later when predictably, they failed in Amway.

I used to participate in very active Amway/Quixtar forums around 2003 and 2004. Amway was a hot topic back then and Amway switching names to Quixtar in North America brought a lot of controversy and criticism. It seems like Amway was hoping that a name change would "fix" their reputation but it also failed miserably. I recall IBOs and Amway defenders saying Quixtar had nothing to do with Amway. I would respond with "then why do you sell Amway products such as LOC and why do your bonuses come from the Amway corporation"? That's when the insults ususally took place.

Basically, in my opinion, Amway sucks. Their products are grossly overpriced and that's because they have to include Amway's generous "up to 33% bonuses" in the prices of their products. Thus Amway charges at least their own mark up and then another 30 - 33% to the prices to pay for the IBO bonuses. A business like WalMart marks up their products maybe 15% to 20% to pay for their rent/lease and their employees and sells their products with razor thin margins. Amway ca't do that because they have to pay IBO bonuses. That's why any neutral and open minded price comparisons will have Amway losing by large margins.

But what makes Amway suck even more, in my opinion, is that Amway as a business opportunity, is used as a "front" by the diamonds to sell voicemail, books, CDs, seminars and other training materials. Thus an IBO has products that re generic in quality and premium in price to sell, and then in order to get into "good graces" with their upline, will have to participate in the "training" system that consists of those CDs, seminars and the like. Those who refuse the system are basically "shunned" by the leaders and "unteachable" and unworthy of being "mentored" by the diamond. Those lucky enough to be mentored, will be advised to be immersed in the teaching system, which nearly assure failure. This totally sucks.

Joining Amway is like a case of betting with someone on a coin flip where the coin flipper has rules that say "heads I win and tails you lose". The vast majority of Amway IBOs have effectively zero chance of success but the opportunity is pitched as foolproof and "guaranteed". Amway just sucks because Amway sucks. If you read this and still join Amway, good luck to you but keep your eyes wide open.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Amway, Failure By Design Part 2

There were some interesting discussion points on my Failure By Design article so I wanted to write a follow up and point out even more reasons why you are doomed to failure in Amway. As discussed earlier, if most IBOs and prospects do little or nothing, then that's already a more than 50% failure rate. Out of the remaining who apply themselves and try to make an effort to profit, less than 50% of those IBOs will make any money because that's how Amway and most other MLM's are designed.

But what makes Amway even worse? It's the systems such as WWDB, Network 21 or BWW that teach you how to fail. Of course they will call it "CORE steps" or teaching you hot to be successful but what these steps actually teach you is how to engage a lot of your time in activities that cost you money (business expenses) but there are hardly any activities that produce income. Showing the plan can help your business but even many Amway defenders will claim that there's maybe a 20% sponsorship rate. I personally doubt this because most people wanting to sponsor never do. The other step that can make you money is to retail (sell products) but with Amway's bad reputation plus having generic quality products at premium prices, Amway is a tough sell.

The other "success steps" such as reading books, listening to CDs and attending seminars and meetings are activities that cost you money but bring on no income. And these activities comprise the majority of an IBO's time and resources. Even current IBOs can track their activity and expenses and easily see that I am correct. In the famous 6-4-2 plan, the majority of IBOs only earn 100 PV which gets them a (gross income) bonus of about $10. An IBO listening to CDs, participating in voicemail and books and functions easily exceed $150 a month in business expenses and more if they are hard core dedicated. If you were like me where the large quarterly functions (i.e. Family Reunion or Summer Conference) took a plane ticket to get there, then the expenses were enormous relative to the $10 that many IBOs earn.

The only way an IBO can actually make decent money is to sponsor a lot of downline, who in turn will absorb the upline's losses and allow for a profit, or to sell products like crazy. But I've never seen or heard of a platinum who achieved that level by retailing Amway products alone. Those who do an open minded and honest price assessment will easily see that Amway products are overpriced. The products are overpriced by design, because those generous Amway bonuses that your diamonds and emeralds receive are included in the price of AMway products. How else can Amway pay those bonuses? The Amway owners aren't billionaires for no reason.

So there you have it. Amway is a business opprtunity where the vast majority of those who try, fail. But former Amway IBOs and people who had a brush with Amway shouldn't feel bad. They failed because Amway is designed to make most people fail, in my opinion and I have explained how and why I have formed that opinion. Good luck if you read this and still join hoping to overcome the overwhelming odds.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Amway, Failure By Design?

Many people, including Amway IBOs and prospects see the 6-4-2 plan or a similar version when they are being recruited into the Amway business. The plan consists of 79 IBOs,, all who actually earned a bonus with 1 person being platinum and the rest earning significantly less. Now I can say with virtual certainty that nobody has ever built a group with that many people who all went out and actually earned a bonus. This is because most IBOs do little or nothing and many join and never order a single product.

Thus we know that someone who actually achieves platinum would likely have double (or more) of the amount of people in order to achieve a similar result (7900 PV). For round numbers, let's say an average platinum group has 150 IBOs. Already we can determine that a platinum is less than 1% of the Amway population and the rest mostly earn little or nothing. While the platinum might earn some decent money, a hardcore dedicated platinum can still lose money because of the "system" consisting of voice mail, CDs, books and functions.

Just by analyzing what I've discussed thus far shows that a platinum group would typically consist of 100 or more (most likely more) Amway down lines and therefore the platinum is firmly in the top 1% of IBOs. This demonstrates that Amway is failure by design. If there are 2 platinum groups, then it's 2 guys on the top each with a group of 100 or more downline making little or nothing. A diamond consists of 6 of these groups with the diamond making good money with hundreds if not thousands of downline making little or nothing. If some day, the entire planet signed up for Amway, guess what? Nothing statistical will change.

When I used to see Amway announce 1000 new platinums, all it means is that there are 1000 new people with groups where the vast majority makes little or nothing. Many people get excited about Amway thinking they will be the platinum and "make it big" but even if they do, they have a group of downline making little or nothing, and taking losses if they are on the system of CDs and functions. You can have smart, motivated downline but it doesn't change the fact that Amway leads to failure by design, as does most other MLMs where you are always recruiting new people. Recruiting is priority because in order for you to reach the top, you also need to find your 100 or more downline who make little or nothing (or losses) in order for you to succeed.

Many people think they have what it takes to "make it" but Amway's recent revenue reports indicate that Amway is a tough sell. Their revenues dipping from 11.8 billion in 2014 to 8.8 billion globally in 2016. But if you've seen this and disregard the information, then good luck to you. You'll be on an interesting but most likely a lose money venture.