Keepin’ It Real: Don’t Get Personal

Throughout the course of my MK career, I have heard many reasons for why consultants should do things, and many times it gets personal. I see no reason for this. This is what is giving us a bad reputation of being ruthless and caring more about our rise to the top than our team member’s lives and feelings. Let’s keep it real, not personal!

Let’s start with the topic of inventory.
I was told “Most of the successful consultants in MK have inventory, you want to be successful don’t you?”. Ok, to me that is personal. Whether or not I had $3600 at the time has nothing to do with my work ethic. Why not keep it real instead? Talk about how having inventory makes life so much easier, saves time, and helps you sell on the spot. We can talk about how you get extra free products from MKC with larger initial orders. But let’s not get personal. Let’s not withhold our preferred initial training (such as debuts), make people feel they will not be a success, or withhold ways that the business can work without it on the basis of the initial order alone. To do this is to set up your new team or unit member for initial disappointment and end up feeling like she has lost before she has begun.

Don’t get personal about meeting attendance. So Sally couldn’t come because it was her anniversary. Think about this: If you make a big deal of that and exclaim “UH! But tonight is meeting, training! This is important to her business” others will feel like meeting is important, but that family is not. This goes against our priorities in MK! But if you exclaim proudly, “Oh good for her! Isn’t it great we can take off for family in this business” others will feel like MK is important, but family is more important. In the long run, reminding others of why MK is different from other jobs will be a better choice than guilting unit members into attending meeting.

What about ordering pressures? My director never dials for dollars, pressures me to order, or asks me to support her goal with my orders. She talks about selling. Most pressure tactics get very personal. “Oh, but I have this huge goal to make DIQ…don’t you care about me and my goals?”. Ok, now that is just wtong. You know they care about you. But your goals, KEEP IT REAL: The probably DON’T! Those are your goals! Instead of resorting to pressuring people to order, why not just have some awesome selling contests? My director did teams once and we got points for new team members, sales, interviews, and bookings. The team with the most points at the end of the quarter won! And you know who else won? My director! We were ordering because we were excited and selling. That is keepin’ it real. πŸ™‚

I’m sure we all may have felt personally attacked or pressured to do something in MK. But the key is to not take it personally. There is nothing wrong with you running your own business. In fact, this may be a prime reason that you decided to start MK.

What should you do if you feel someone is getting personal or pressuring you?

1. Tell them.

As tactfully as you can, let them know “I understand that you may feel that way, and that ____(insert thing she wants you to do here)_______ is important. I just can’t _______(order inventory, go to Seminar, go to retreat, attend meeting this week, etc)_____ right now. To do so would cause problems in my family and I know you wouldn’t want that. I will still be doing my MK business, and I do plan on _________(attending meeting, going to Seminar, building up my inventory)________ in the future because I know it would be beneficial to me. But right now I just can’t.”

2. Don’t take it personally.

In the end, they don’t think you won’t be a success or that your world will fall apart if you don’t go to Fall Retreat. But they are hoping you will be inspired to book, sell, and recruit. This is really what is on their mind, not you personally. So don’t take it that way, even if it seems harsh at the time. Remember that you cannot change the actions of others, just your reaction to their actions.

3. Vow to not get personal when you are in their shoes.

I am vowing now to not make it a personal thing when I am a director. Everyone will get the same training and treatment regardless of their ordering habits. Of course, some people will be working more and need my help more. This is different. That is not basing it on what I need, but on their work ethic and desire to move up. But I vow to keep it real and not use guilt or scare tactics to get my job done. πŸ™‚

If you have had anyone get personal with you or pressure you into doing something you didn’t really want to do, I’m sorry. But now is not the time to lament and wallow in that feeling of anger and frustration. Now is the time to look to the future and know that you will be different. You will keep it real.



Filed under Direct Sales, FAQ's, Is Mary Kay for me?, Leadership, Money Management, Motivation, Personal Use Consultant, Real life answers, Sales techniques, Team Building, WW MKA Do?

10 responses to “Keepin’ It Real: Don’t Get Personal

  1. Dara

    MKRule- May I respectfully tweak the dialogue in Pt.1 a bit?

    I have a friend who taught me a very important lesson as a woman. It had to do with how some women always feel that they have to explain why they aren’t or are doing something. What Kathy taught me was this: a simple, firm UN-APOLOGETIC, “No”, I won’t be able to do ( insert any activity or request here), Thank you for understanding” should be enough.

    As an adult, in most cases, we shouldn’t feel that we HAVE TO to offer an explanation to anyone about our decision whether or not to engage in any activity, it is a courtesy.

    I’m so glad that you brought this up, because a friend just received a letter from her Director asking for her order or else the Unit would fold at the end of Sept. This Director made it very personal and when my friend couldn’t help , she was made to feel awful – as though she was letting the Unit down. She said she cringed when she heard herself delivering a long explanation as to why she couldn’t order, expressing her regret that the Unit was in jeopardy only to be told ” If you were really sorry, you would be ordering, Ouch!.

    Thanks for addressing this MKRules, it goes on alot more than we even realize.

  2. UH! If she was really sorry she would order??? Wow. Now that is the bad behavior that gives us all a bad name. I wonder if MKC can do something about that. I might look into it.

  3. Explaining the no only “validates” the question or request. I learned that a long time ago from a mentor in my previous life. He also told me to be careful which questions I even responded to for the same reason… food for thought anyway. πŸ™‚

  4. Well sometimes you have to respond because you are asked a direct question. I think some people really have a hard time saying, “No”. Not that it is impossible, they just don’t know how.


    I can’t even believe that someone would do that. My thought on this is if the director would focus on selling then she might not be having this problem. If you are moving your product then you will have to reorder because you will have reorders …etc. This is what gives us all a bad name like you said MKR. I can understand this lady because no for me is sometimes hard to say because you don’t want to let anyone down. However, I am learning that you can’t be everything and do everything a person just can’t. That is just life.

  6. I agree with Dara. A firm “no” should do it. They don’t need to know your personal business. I have given my director reasons why I can’t attend. She and I are friends, though, so I’m not worried about it. But I also felt she needed to understand why I couldn’t always be at meetings and that it wasn’t because I don’t feel it’s important, but it’s because I have a lot of “stuff” going on right now. I know they worry you will never come back, but they should be able to see that if you’re not at meeting, but you are still selling (and, therefore, ordering); you will be back. Actually, they’ll see that it’s not the business you’ve abandoned at all. Fortunately, my director is very understanding about meetings and personal obligations.

  7. Isn’t it interesting how, when we take ourselves out of the equation, putting the focus on our team, our business flourishes?

    Yet for some reason, maybe the “control freak” in us, or the worry that we may not make production, or we may lose whatever level we attained, creeps in and instead of being all about your team, it becomes all about you. And you end up in a downward spiral.

    It’s the same for our customers. Take the focus off you and put it on them. Many consultants (in MK and other direct selling companies) try to book by saying stuff like “Won’t you help me by having a party?” This places a burden on the hostess and turns the party into “work” that she didn’t ask for, simply because she’s doing this “just to help the MK lady out.” I’ve found this sets up the party for a low turnout and low sales, because that’s just what the hostess says when inviting her guests: “I’m just doing this party to help this lady out, so will you come? You don’t have to buy anything, just come.”

    Instead, sell your hostess on what SHE gets out of this party. Take, for example, the catalog party I just booked for my sister. She called me one day just to say HI and got my voicemail, which states “I can’t come to the phone right now because I’m out Keeping America Happy” (KAH is our “slogan”). Well, she began her message by saying “You can keep ME happy, but I have to wait until I get money, first.” Well, I call her back and as we’re talking, I tell her that even though we’re 1600 miles apart, she can still have a catalog party and get hostess credits. I explained that the average order is $50, and if she can get 5 people to order $50, she’ll have the minimum $250 for a qualifying party and get $25 in free stuff, and it only goes up from there! She was sold, I sent her a few catalogs and order forms. So far I’ve had two people contact me (one with a $78 order and one with a $54 order) and my sister says that she’s got five orders at her house as of Tuesdsay–and her catalog party doesn’t close until tomorrow!

    Another instance is a couple I booked from church. We were talking about marital woes after church and I told them I think I can help. After talking for a while about openness and communication, they were interested in booking a party to learn more ideas and advice. In this instance, the hostess credits were just icing on the cake for these people.

  8. Dara

    Romance- LOVE, LOVE, LOOOOOVE what you wrote,. So many of the suggested dialogues and scripts we get as Consultants put us in the position of begging and pleading 😦 ( I might be exxagerating a bit, but not much πŸ™‚ )to help us to meet whatever challenge or goal we are working toward. Your two experiences really illustrate that it should always be about the customer and what we can do for our potential Hostesses.

  9. About not begging, see my post on Offering is Better than Asking or Are You a Pusher or Puller?

  10. You can bring them up in the search.

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