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Seminar 2018 Reflections

#MyMKLife…it’s a hashtag Mary Kay suggested we use a couple of years ago.

It’s handy.  It covers a wide range for me.  As I sit in the plane  from Dallas to NYC, and home to Burlington VT, I get to reflect on my MK life.

I am returning from the big Mary Kay convention called Seminar.  It’s huge.  Mary Kay’s beauty consultant and sales director population is so big, they repeat the seminar extravaganza 4 times in a row; spanning over almost a month’s time.  There are simply too many of us to fit into the convention center at once.

Seminar attendees are a sea of variety…every age, race, body shape, and geographical location…

Mostly women.  One of my favorite events is lunch.  Yes, I love to eat, but it’s not the food…it’s the women I get to meet.  Approximately, there are 8000 people in each session of seminar.  Can you imagine it?  8000 people in a room the size of a football field!  I used to try to explain this to my father who was in the food service business.  He would have loved to see this.

This year’s lunch experience was a treat!  My friends were guided down a very long aisle on one side of a very long table.  We were seated across from an older couple. Before I continue with this story, let me explain that Mary Kay is very recognition and prize oriented.  If you were in the fine jewelry business, you would salivate to have Mary Kay Cosmetics as an account.

Back to the lunch story…The sales director across the table had a diamond bar pin on her suit…  $1,000,000! Her sales unit did $1,000,000 in sales.   That’s a lot of moisturizer and lipstick.  She had been on 23 top director trips…traveling all over the world on Mary Kay.  Half of the time, her husband couldn’t accompany her, and Mary Kay Ash would have this single director join her at her table.  They became dear friends.  Her stories about Mary Kay Ash, who built this multi-billion dollar, international business, on $5000, were heartwarming and wonderfully entertaining.  The people who knew Mary Kay, and learned from her personally, are dwindling.  They have either retired or sadly, they have passed away.  To hear these stories first hand meant so much to me.

Oh!  And the reason her husband couldn’t go on half of those trips?  He was also busy in his career building people up.  He was wearing a Super Bowl ring, and was a defensive coach for many teams around the country.  His last team was Tampa Bay, where he retired.  His wife continues with her business.  After all of these years, she is still mentoring women to fulfill their dreams for a better life.  As a matter of fact, the young woman sitting next to her was her newest unit member.  She started her business while being a member of the US Airforce.

The stories…it’s one of the reasons to go to seminar

To see the enormity of Mary Kay Cosmetics.  I can read all about it in our monthly Applause Magazine, or on our company website. But really…It’s more powerful to see hundreds of women pick up keys to their new Mary Kay cars; It’s more powerful to hear the story of the 17 year old girl who came to this country, signed her beauty agreement at 19, and is now living the life most only dream about;    It’s more powerful when the president of Mary Kay tells us first hand that The Mary Kay Foundation funded 1.2 million dollars to cancer research and 3 million went to programs to end domestic violence nationwide.  This year!

It’s a privilege to talk directly to the best scientists in the world, who work exclusively for Mary Kay.

They patiently and enthusiastically answer all of our questions so we can return home to service our clients with exceptional service and product knowledge.

I haven’t mentioned the girlfriend time.  One of my dear sister sales directors from Florida hugged me the other day and said “welcome to Camp Mary Kay!”  I’ve always said that.  I spent  ten amazing  summers on the shores of Lake Champlain at the YWCA’s Camp Hochelaga.  That’s where I first experienced “girl power”.  I always said, Mary Kay’s Seminar is like Camp Hochelaga… in panty hose.


To end, a friend of my brother, Peter Asch, owner of Twincraft, where Mary Kay contracts to have their beauty bar manufactured, was honored as a preferred vendor at a MK Seminar.  He said it was amazing.  My brother commented, “Yes, direct selling companies are great at inspiring their sales force”.  This was Peter’s reply,

“Josh, I’ve been to dozens of these direct selling conventions, and after spending three days at Mary Kay’s Seminar, I wanted to become a beauty consultant!”


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