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10 Faces of Direct Sales

We showcase 10 of the leading names in an industry that provides people with a range of flexible ways to start their own business 10 Faces of Direct Sales

Lynda Mills, director general of the Direct Selling Association

In post for over seven years, Lynda’s a veteran of the industry, having previously worked with direct selling brand Avon. She has an in-depth knowledge of the sector, how it works and why it’s such an appealing option for the 400,000 people involved in it across the UK.

Lynda is a firm believer in direct selling as an option not just for its core ‘mummy’ market, but increasingly to expanding demographics such as retirees and men.

She’s particularly passionate about the potential opportunities direct selling gives young people and how the next generation of direct sellers are transforming the industry. Not surprisingly, Lynda is heavily involved in the ongoing drive to support younger people entering the sector.

Dan Andersson, president and CEO of Learning Enterprises Organisation

Dan has been in the direct selling industry for over 30 years and is recognised for his excellent leadership qualities. He provides constant support, training, knowledge and direction for both staff and members, leaving everyone he meets feeling like they can achieve their dreams and aspirations.

In January 2016 Dan launched LEOcrowd, a unique crowdfunding platform for both LEO members and the public. The platform works to help fund projects and business ventures.

What makes LEOcrowd different is its links to the global community of entrepreneurs at LEO, who are already engaged with the idea of supporting business start-ups.

Amir Barlas, Learning Enterprises Organisation

Direct selling with LEO for just over a year, Amir was recently awarded Mentor of the Year at the Stars of Direct Selling Awards.

This accolade recognises the direct seller who has given support and time to their team, as well as running an effective and successful direct selling business themselves.

Amir was commended for his enthusiasm and continued support of his team, regularly travelling throughout the UK to help them achieve the best results possible and fulfil their dreams of becoming excellent direct sellers.

Denise Kelly, Cambridge Weight Plan

An inspirational figure within the direct selling industry, Denise managed to transform her life since becoming a direct seller over 25 years ago. She attributes this to the flexible nature of the industry and financial stability she’s achieved to support her family.

At the 2016 Stars of Direct Selling Awards, Denise was awarded 50+ Direct Seller of the Year. She works tirelessly to support and mentor her team, helping them to achieve their career goals within direct selling.

Belinda Butler, Mary Kay

The Part-Time Direct Seller of the Year at the annual Stars of Direct Selling Awards, Belinda received this accolade in recognition of her ability to balance her business with her other work and family commitments.

Following the birth of her first daughter, she made the courageous decision to leave her full-time job to run her own fitness business, which she did alongside working as a direct seller with Mary Kay.

Since joining the cosmetics company, Belinda has shown consistency through her team in both sales and recruitment, priding herself on leading from the front.

Vicky Beckett, vice president, Arbonne

Vicky has been vice president of Arbonne for three years, originally joining the company as sales director in 2007.

Not only does she have an aptitude for sales and strategic planning, her focus on charity and giving back has seen her spearhead sizeable charitable donations, as well as the introduction of the Arbonne Charitable Foundation to the UK in 2013.

Vicky won the Leadership Award at this year’s Direct Selling Association conference, beating off fierce competition to win an award that recognised her as an industry role model.

Cliff Walker, global network marketing entrepreneur

From Blackpool, Cliff is a renowned leader in network marketing, having built a distribution network of over 100,000 individuals in more than 100 countries.

Beyond achieving an annual seven-figure income - he’s currently on the Diamond level at health company Jeunesse Global - Cliff, as the creator of The Climbers Club, is also a disruptor of the network marketing model.

This academy helps frustrated managers or executives escape the glass ceiling of corporate life. The Climbers Club features a panel of global leaders in sales, marketing, networking and business excellence, some of whom are leading international authors.

Since entering network marketing in 1998, he’s risen to the top levels in three major global companies - Euphony Communications, Forever Freedom International and Jeunesse Global.

Invited to speak on network marketing best practice around the world, Cliff is also a highly regarded coach and mentor, known for his no-hype and practical, hands-on training style.

Jayne Leach, Forever Living Products

Originally a sheep farmer, Jayne started her Forever business 24 years ago.

Today she’s one of the health and beauty company’s most prominent business leaders, ranked number three in the world. Her business extends over 50 countries and is the largest in the UK.

Jayne is living proof that with the right mindset and work ethic, anything is possible. Mother of two grown-up sons and now a grandmother, she’s helped change the lives of thousands of people around the world through her coaching and mentoring.

On her success, Jayne says: “I went to work, learned and developed the skills and stayed focused on my goals.

“I joined to be successful and committed to the long haul. My commitment and determination kept me going through the hard times and anyone who does that ultimately will be successful, whatever their goal.”

Joshua Matheson, Avon Cosmetics

As well as studying marketing and business full-time, 22-year-old former hairdresser Joshua is already recognised as one of Avon Cosmetics’ top independent sales leaders in the country.

A prime example of the modern face of the business, he’s part of a new wave of millennial Avon representatives who’ve swapped door-to-door sales for social selling, acquiring a vast network of customers through his social media channels.

Currently heading up a team of 30 representatives after just five months with Avon, Joshua approaches those looking for part-time work through social media platforms such as Snapchat and Facebook.

With a Facebook network of over 4,000 people, he has successfully converted a number of his friends to the brand - most of whom are under 30 and many of whom were previously unfamiliar with the brand or thought it was aimed at ‘older women’. 50 per cent of his sales are generated through his social media channels.

Adam Hall, RAC

Adam was introduced to the RAC by an ex-colleague in February 2015 and was immediately interested by the generous commission structure and great reputation the RAC has with the general public - which in face-to-face sales is a fantastic plus.

He hit the ground running and was the UK’s number one salesman in 2015 by £50,000, despite not starting until February. This was then followed up by again hitting the top spot in 2016.

Adam continues to do well and grow his business - this month he’s broken his own records by hitting £25,000 revenue and 170 new members.

In January 2016 the RAC changed the commission structure and geared it more towards a franchise model, which according to Adam transformed the model overnight into the best paid face-to-face sales job in the country.

Adam tells everyone he meets: “If you’re confident in your sales ability, you need to have a look at RAC Direct Sales, as it could literally change your life.”

Key facts about direct sales

• Direct selling is where goods are sold to consumers by self-employed distributors via parties, catalogues, demonstrations and events.

• The industry is the UK’s largest provider of part-time, independent opportunities, contributing over £2 billion annually to the economy.

• Established brands that use this sales method include Avon, Neal’s Yard, Kleeneze and Usborne Books at Home.

• It’s easy and cost-effective to start your own direct selling business - on average, £100 for a business kit and sample products.

• There are over 400,000 self-employed direct sellers in the UK.

• On average, men account for 24 per cent of direct selling sales forces.

• 62 per cent of the UK’s direct sellers have another job and 95 per cent only do it part-time, so it’s a popular choice for a flexible, composite career.

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