We are so excited to introduce our dear friend, Heidi, to our beloved JBJ community today. As a wife, mom, sister and friend, she is many different things to many people. She is constantly going and pursuing her passions; something we love and admire about her. Because of this, we knew she would make an awesome guest blogger! We have been on her for a while to share some of her amazing stories. She is an entrepreneur at heart and has decided to talk about this passion in today’s post. (You may have noticed that she has also become an advertiser with us!) So, sit back and read on! You are sure to find some working mommy inspiration in the words you are about to take in. – Chelse & Kerstin
Moms, Don’t Dis Direct Sales Just Yet
Overtime, I have learned that making something on my own drives me; be it an idea that blossoms into real life, or a place I create, like the home for my sweet family. Perhaps that is why I have always wanted to open my own business. I am no stranger to entrepreneurship. My husband owns his own business and I have worked in direct sales for many years. I am keenly aware of the risks, challenges, and impact it has on a family. (That is a completely separate blog!) I know it is difficult and will require much more than 40 hours a week- who works only 40 hours, anyway? I also know I have to fill in when others call out.
There are so many opinions, both good and bad, about direct sales companies. With firsthand experience in a handful of these companies like At Home America, Thirty-One Gifts, and Heritage Makers, I have learned what I desire and what real opportunity can look like. All opinions aside, the bottom line is they do provide opportunity and freedom. An opportunity to set my own hours, work my own business, pay my bills and have minimal to NO overhead. An opportunity to create the life that I want.
I can imagine if I could have gotten on board during the early years at Mary Kay or Avon! No doubt, everyone thought they were nuts when they started selling makeup out of their cars, purses, homes, etc. The financial freedom that they only dreamed of actually became a reality, so sign me up!
The nasty stereotype that some direct sales companies and consultants are getting is disturbing. It feels like people are laughing at the American Dream, my American Dream. I often forget that not everyone wants to work for themselves and set their own schedule. And to many people, direct sales can be intimidating and overwhelming. They are uncomfortable reaching out to people even when they truly believe in a product. They’ve seen one too many pyramid schemes go bad.
But, I see the possibilities! And the reality is that not all direct sales companies operate this way. Direct sales businesses give you a foundation or “kit” which you then get to customize. How far you go is completely based on the effort you contribute. I love doing direct sales because it allows me to work however hard I can, both physically and mentally. Some months, I just have nothing else to give after my family and my work, and that’s okay. I have no employees and although I take my role on my team very seriously, there is flexibility for the rest of life too. My most important roles are as a mother and a wife, and this industry gives me the freedom to be successful in those areas.
Currently, my reality is a great day job. I get to help people every day. It has been so much more rewarding than I could have ever imagined. But, because of this drive to create something on my own and the subsequent opportunity to have more control over my own life, I am trying to make it big on the side, too. I’m not talking about “never work again” big. I’m talking “just a little” big. For starters, I’d like to be able to support my husband in his business adventure and just pay one or two payments.
I feel like this “side” project has provided the opportunity I have been looking for. Keep Collective is a sister company to another quite successful direct sales company. They just launched in January, which is risky, I know. The company has had so much success in a short time. I am one of the Founding Designers; I am one of those that got on board in the early years. Let the journey continue as I begin to grow my team and help someone like me find their path to starting a business and finding the same opportunity and freedom.
If you liked this post, check out some of Jelly Bean Journal’s other guest writers: