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Amway Forever: The Amazing Story of a Global Business Phenomenon by Kathryn A. Jones

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Learning the Ropes

The day after they bought their Nutrilite starter kits, Jay and Rich made their first sale of one box to a man who owned a grocery store in Ada, a town outside Grand Rapids. Despite that early encouraging sign, they didn’t sell another box for two weeks and had no luck attracting others to their distributor organization. Friends whom they told about their new business “thought we were crazy,” Jay said.3 He and Rich began to wonder if they were, too—or at least if they had made a mistake. They grew so discouraged by the constant rejection that they considered doing the very thing they abhorred: quitting. However, they had learned from past mistakes that it wasn’t worth expending time and effort on an enterprise that wasn’t producing the results they wanted. They shifted their attention back to their other businesses.

Then Jay’s cousin invited them to attend a Nutrilite distributor meeting in Chicago. The Ja-Ri partners agreed, figuring they either needed to find a reason to stay with Nutrilite or drop it. A hundred and fifty people turned out for the meeting, many more than Jay or Rich expected to see. Moreover, the people who attended were “all excited about selling vitamins, and many of them enjoying considerable success in their Nutrilite businesses,” Jay recalled.4 Some were doing so well they had quit their previous jobs to sell the supplement full time. One speaker after another related their success stories and shared strategies to boost sales. Jay and ...

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