Saturday, August 13, 2022

The Job Pyramid?

 One of the things I take issue with is how Amway uplines will create an us versus them mentality in the business. Thus, friends and family who care about you suddenly become "negative" and association with them should be limited or cut off completely. In some cases, people are discouraged from excellence in their jobs or professions because it takes the focus off of their Amway business. What I was told was to do my job, but my radar should always be on for new prospects.  And I should only do my job and not focus on anything more because you need to focus on Amway.  Some cross line IBOs turned down promotions at work because they did not want to have to work longer hours or take the focus off of their Amway businesses.

In some cases, the speaker at open meetings or functions will put down people's jobs. A commonly used acronym was J-O-B = "Just Over Broke", or "Jackass Of (The) Boss".  Some leaders also would say that my job was a pyramid because you will never earn more than the boss. A completely ridiculous comparison because someone's job has no relationship with how people view the Amway business (i.e. an Amway pyramid) and in a job, every employee gets paid and has a net gain at the end of the month. Not true in Amway. If IBOs only use KATE for example, an IBO at 100 PV or less will already be at a loss, and that is not considering any other expenses that IBO may have. And while a job may have a hierarchy, or chain of command, the business owner and CEO or manager earns their salary from customers, not directly from the pockets of their employees.  And in a business. even the lowest guy that might sweep the floors, will still get paid and have income at the end of the month.  No so in Amway.

Some uplines will laugh about people's jobs, stating that they wake up at the "crack of noon". What these same uplines may not tell you is that they wake up at noon because they are up at 3:00 in the morning doing night owls for their groups and looking for recruits. These same uplines possibly can't do much with their downlines since their downlines mostly tend to have 9-5 jobs. An Amway diamond still has a job, but they work the graveyard shift because the mainstream world works during the day. The part about waking up at the crack of noon is because your upline diamond has to sleep in since he's working the overnight shift.

So if you are of the opinion that nobody should criticize the Amway opportunity or IBO behavior, maybe uplines and IBOs should not criticize family and friends who disagree with or are not interested in the Amway opportunity. And maybe the same uplines and IBOs should not criticize people who choose to work jobs. Don't most IBOs rely on their jobs? More than likely their Amway income is not sufficient to even pay for their Amway business related expenses, let alone anything else. It is most often someone's job that winds up supporting their Amway business, which is truly ironic.

Friday, August 12, 2022

Be Accountable?

 Part of what Joecool perceives as the problem with the Amway opportunity is the utter lack of accountability of some upline leaders. They may tell you to trust them, to submit to them and simply copy or duplicate what they have done, and they imply that you will get the same results. Possibly millions of downlines over the years have put in blood sweat and tears into the business only to suffer massive losses following the system. Upline will take credit for meager success but place the blame on the downline when success is not there. Upline will claim that they either did not try hard enough, were not teachable enough, or they didn't put in enough time and effort. Despite a shockingly low success rate of system IBOs, nobody seems to fault the system as being flawed. And nobody seems to question whether upline is at fault. I believe it's obvious that the system and the upline advice is severely flawed.

In my observations, I would say that many financial systems are similar. Whether it be BWW, N21, WWDB, real estate gurus or other systems, the success rate is extremely low. Many systems that advertise on television will have a disclaimer that a success testimony is a rare or unique experience. I believe it is similar to the systems in Amway. Dedication or continued spending on the system is not the problem. The problem is often the system itself. It can work for some exceptional people. These people were likely to succeed in other venues anyway. The problem is that is does not work for the majority of people. People who succeed in Amway likely succeed in spite of the system and not because of it.

The bigger problem is that for many many years, some uplines have lived high on the hog off of the dedicated tool purchases of their downline. All the while, questionable or bad advice was given to the faithful downline. Advice such as quitting a job to attend a function, skipping financial obligations such as the rent or electric bills to buy more tools. One upline even said your family can skip a meal because the standing order may contain the one thing you needed to hear to make your business grow. I have personally seen couples lose their homes and go bankrupt because they followed upline advice. Upline to "has their best interest at heart". Granted, the couple has some culpability in these decisions, but uplines who give this advice seem to get a pass.

Where is the accountability? Some of these uplines who give and gave bad advice, are still active today, and some are still giving bad advice to their downlines. Advice that profits upline and drains downline. Even with valid complaints, it appears that many uplines avoid any accountability. For some, perhaps there is poetic justice, such as diamonds having their homes foreclosed. But as many uplines have nobody to hold them accountable, do you really want to do business with these folks? Would you invest your retirement money with a broker who could not be held accountable? Would you have your car repaired by a shop whose mechanics could not be held accountable? I believe the answer is not to these questions, yet many people are asked to trust and follow the advice of an upline who is not held accountable for their advice.

The system is credited for the few successes that are visible, but the individual is held accountable for any shortcomings or failures. IBOs, I encourage you to hold your upline leaders accountable for the advice they give you. If they won't answer tough questions or take responsibility, then one should wonder why the upline should be given your trust.

Thursday, August 11, 2022

Diamonds Are "Forever"?

 I've seen some interesting discussion recently about how an Amway diamond pin is like winning a gold medal. That you don't get it taken away from you later even if you don't qualify anymore. The discussion also flowed as to where they mentioned that former US President Jimmy Carter is still addressed as Mr. President. Or that someone with a Superbowl ring can be addressed as a Superbowl champion. While I agree with that to some degree, I think the issue of diamond or former diamond is significant and different from former President Carter or a former Superbowl Champion. Terry Bradshaw or Joe Montana don't parade around as if they just won the Superbowl last year.

The diamond pin is a significant achievement for sure. Seems that recently, it's even harder to achieve in North America. I don't know of more than a few new diamonds emerging in the last twenty years or so in the US. But if say a diamond qualified in 1988 and never qualified again, how would you as an IBO feel about paying to see this diamond speak function after function and how many would continue to buy standing orders from a guy who may have achieved diamond 20 years ago and never again? Would the audiences be "fired up" to see these speakers? I find this ironic also, because many Amway defenders like to criticize Amway critics for having an outdated experience. Well, conversely, a one-time diamond would be basically the same thing. If not, then Joecool should command the respect of a 4000 PV Eagle since that was my highest level.

I actually have no issue with Amway allowing the achiever to carry their highest pin as a recognized achievement, but I do believe that those who use their former pin status to exploit and profit from new IBOs and prospects should be stopped. I know I would not have been so excited attending a function where the keynote speaker went diamond for 6 months a decade ago and was no longer qualified. Else, by upline's definition, he will teach me to go diamond and fall apart? I believe there are fewer North American diamonds now than twenty years ago. Some diamonds resigned and some outright quit. So much for residual/passive income. Obviously if these things existed, then nobody would quit or walk away from residual income.

BTW, an article on an Amway Corporate website says this about passive income:
"Passive income is a term we do not permit distributors to use and it’s not a term the Corporation uses. In our business, there is no such thing as doing no work, and expecting money to still come in.” Link:
http://blogs.amway.com/answers/2010/11/02/unwelcome-words/#comments

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

The Real Path To Success; "CORE"?

 Analysis Of CORE?

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/audios
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.

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

The Real Problem With The Amway Opportunity?

 One of the reasons I started blogging about Amway was to share my personal experiences in Amway and WWDB, and to allow information seekers and prospects to get an insight into what I see as potential problems with the Amway opportunity. In many of my blog articles, you will notice that many of the problems I have identified with the Amway opportunity are more closely ties to a motivational group such as WWDB, BWW, or Network 21. But Amway apparently has allowed these many bad practices to go unchecked, thus they are not completely guiltless in the abuse of downline over the years.  Sadly, the result has been financial damage done to many hard-working people who believed and wanted a better life for themselves.  The Upline are basically charlatans who exploit those who trust them.   

Too often, the Amway opportunity is misrepresented by IBOs. For example, I have heard so many times, that Amway is a franchise opportunity, which is not true. I have also heard so many times that an average Joe can work for 2-5 years and create a willable and residual income that will allow you to not have a job, and possibly to allow you to enjoy untold wealth and luxury. I don't believe this is true for the vast majority of people who were sold on the Amway opportunity. Very very few people make any money from Amway and out of those who do, the profits are also from tools and functions and not exclusively from Amway.

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

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

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

Those are some of the problems I see with Amway.

The Job Pyramid?

 One of ths things I take issue with is how Amway uplines will create an us versus them mentality in the business. Thus, friends and family who care about you suddenly become "negative" and association with them should be limited or cut off completely. In some cases, people are discouraged from excellence in their jobs or professions because it takes the focus off of their Amway business. What I was told was to do my job, but my radar should always be on for new prospects. Some cross line IBOs turned down promotions at work because they did not want to have to work longer hours or take the focus off of their Amway businesses.

In some cases, the speaker at open meetings or functions will put down people's jobs. A commonly used acronym was J-O-B = "Just Over Broke". Some leaders also would say that my job was a pyramid because you will never earn more than the boss. A completely ridiculous comparison because someone's job has no relationship with how people view the Amway business (i.e. an Amway pyramid) and in a job, every employee gets paid and has a net gain at the end of the month. Not true in Amway. If IBOs only use KATE for example, an IBO at 100 PV or less will already be at a loss, and that is not considering any other expenses that IBO may have. And while a job may have a hierarchy, or chain of command, the business owner and CEO or manager earns their salary from customers, not directly from the pockets of their employees.

Some uplines will laugh about people's jobs, stating that they wake up at the "crack of noon". What these same uplines may not tell you is that they wake up at noon because they are up at 3:00 in the morning doing nite owls for their groups and looking for recruits. These same uplines possibly can't do much with their downlines since their downlines mostly tend to have 9-5 jobs. An Amway diamond still has a job, but they work the graveyard shift because the mainstream world works during the day. The part about waking up at the crack of noon is because your upline diamond has to sleep in since he's working the overnight shift.

So if you are of the opinion that nobody should criticize the Amway opportunity or IBO behavior, maybe uplines and IBOs should not criticize family and friends who disagree with or are not interested in the Amway opportunity. And maybe the same uplines and IBOs should not criticize people who choose to work jobs. Don't most IBOs rely on their jobs? More than likely their Amway income is not sufficient to even pay for their Amway business related expenses, let alone anything else. It is most often someone's job that winds up supporting their Amway business, which is truly ironic.

Sunday, August 7, 2022

Finally Quitting Amway?

 One of the things that keeps some IBOs going is the "alternative reality". What I mean by that is for some IBOs, once you have been in Amway for a while, it can be hard to quit. You may have been recruited with dreams of lifelong residual income and walking on all of the exotic beaches of the world. Retiring young and spending that time with your wife and family. To quit means an IBO would have to face the reality that these dreams will not come true, at least not with the Amway business. The fact is that the Amway opportunity probably would not have delivered those dreams anyway. Even a diamond more than likely cannot afford those dreams. In fact, I would estimate that most diamonds, if they flaunt some excessive lifestyle, are near broke or in heavy debt as a diamond income cannot sustain a jet set lifestyle, save for a founder's crown ambassador or something similar. I believe the prominent WWDB triple diamond bankruptcy shed a lot of light into the finances of an upper-level pin and it wasn't nearly as impressive as I would have thought.

But what is the reality? It's working hard only to drift between 100 and 500 PV. It's finally sponsoring a new IBO only to have a downline quit. It's talking to people about Amway and getting laughed at or getting rejected. It's your upline or sponsor pushing you to do more. Possibly your upline is one who questions your manhood if you aren't working hard enough. It's your upline or sponsor reminding you that a winner doesn't miss functions, especially the major ones. It's staying up late for team meetings or nite owls when you need a good nite's rest to do your job the next day. It's driving the miles to show a plan, only to have your prospect not show up. It's having to be deceptive about what you are doing. It's skipping functions with family and friends so you can be core to the business.

As IBOs, do you see any of this? I saw much of this during my involvement. While I have not been an IBO in some years now, I still see many testimonies and comments by more current and even some active IBOs to indicate that a lot of this still goes on. While Amway defenders will deny it, I see no reason why any of this would have changed over the years since Amway has made no significant changes to stop abusive uplines. If Amway did make any changes, they are not immediately apparent, and the continuous string of comments and testimonies do not confirm that any clean-up has been done. I recently sent some information to Amway about some unethical behavior by an IBO. Not only did they not publish my concern on their now defunct "Answers" blog, they also did not respond and apparently did nothing to the unethical IBO. So much for not turning a blind eye.

For active IBOs or prospects, these are the realities that may be attached with the Amway opportunity. Much of it is because of motivational groups such as WWDB or BWW, but if you are seeing these traits in your group, ask the tough questions. If you happen to decide that the Amway opportunity is not for you, take heart! There are other ways to achieve your financial goals and dreams and there are more efficient ways out there. Sometimes, quitting something that isn't working is a wise business decision and sometimes you can lose more by not quitting. Good luck in whatever you decide