I would like to share with you my story and the “how and why” I began my Oil Journey. A few years ago, I was a very active AVON business woman, helping others share AVON and make money. I was leading a team of approximately 100 women and men who were looking to change their […]
As I made my bed this morning, I began thinking of my mother. She had “chores” that she did daily, most with a specific purpose. For instance, making one’s bed was done each morning, fluffing the pillows and straightening the sheets just so because, as she said, “it feels so good to get into a neat bed at night”. All laundry was placed into the laundry hampers, each with it’s special collection; towels in the bathroom hamper, sheets in the upstairs hamper, and clothes in the proper basket.
I continue so many of these “chores”, just as my mother did. Not because she did it that way, but merely as a matter of rote! Proving, I suppose, that one does live as one learns. In the same way that dirty dishes do NOT stay in the sink, but are either placed in the dishwasher, or hand washed. The house is dust free, carpets vacuumed, and floors swept. Something is always freshly baked and “emergency quick meals” either in the freezer or canning cellar. I must admit, that many of these are not always visible in my home.
If you asked her the purpose for all these “chores”, her answer for each one was the same; “well, I’m ready for unexpected company”. That response came from a time when out of town family visited often. Whether it was a summer vacation or weekend visit, mom was always prepared.
Mom also had a “weekday” chore list as well. Monday was laundry day; Tuesday she would iron and bake. Wednesday was a “what ever day” where in she would catch up on or do whatever she felt needed to be done! Thursday was bread baking day and cleaning the upstairs. All beds were stripped, clean linen was replaced, and all furniture dusted to a shine! On Fridays, the downstairs or main floor, received her loving touches. Furniture was dusted and polished, couch and chair cushions removed and vacuumed, and the wood was cleaned. I so loved the smell of Murphy’s Oil Soap. Even today, that smell reminds me of my mom and a clean house!
Saturday, now that was a day. The first “stop” for my mom was a trip to the hairdresser. She did this every Saturday for as long as I have memory. Her standing appointment was always 8 am sharp! While she was gone, I would start the morning with a quick once over of furniture just to make sure no dust was there. The non-carpeted floors were scrubbed, on hands and knees, and the bathrooms were made to sparkle. I always, from early on, have hated to clean the bathroom. Mom made a “deal with me”. I scrubbed the floors and she would clean the bathrooms. Errands outside the home were accomplished once mom was finished with her hair appointment, to ensure that the refrigerator was stocked and everything was as fit for company as possible. When she returned home, my work was inspected. Many times then, we would go shopping together, or we would sit for the rest of the day “crafting”! I learned to sew, crochet and knit, do bead work, plastic canvas, and of course, mom and I had our own ceramic business.
Sunday, was always devoted to church and family. As a very young child, through my teenage years, we would go to early mass, come home to such a wonderful smell, as the days noon meal was already cooking on the stove. Maybe a pot of chicken soup, stuffed cabbage, or chicken and cabbage, whatever the meal, the house smelled wonderful. After the noon meal, it was a drive to visit my grandfather and then dad would always stop at one of the family’s homes on our way home. Many times, the day ended with a visit to the “Slovenian Hall” for a polka dance. Once my grandfather passed away, our Sundays were always family visits; whether in our home with my sister and her family, or visits to one of the many aunts or uncles! I literally grew up with my cousins as best friends.
As these memories flood my mind, tears flow down my cheeks. It’s not that I am sad to remember, but sad instead, that those days with my parents can now be only memories. All the aunts and uncles are now gone; cousins all scattered and we stay in touch now through social media or telephone. We no longer have Sunday visits. Wedding showers and weddings, christenings, and birthdays, no longer are shared by the entire family. It seems that for the most part, we gather now at funerals.
I pray, that my sons, and my grand children will one day, have a cache of memories of me and my “chores” and laugh as they remember the times we spent together.
In my last entry, I shared an analogy of building a garage to make the point that any building or business needs a strong foundation to sustain itself. Building that strong foundation takes time and lots of energy. The reward however, is well worth it.
Most all reading this blog have children. You watched them grow from infant to toddler, teen to adult. At about 3 months old, we begin to “aid” these babies in their progress to crawl by placing them on the floor on their tummy. We “tease” them with toys to get them to begin to move. As they progress and crawl all around the house, our next training step is to stand them next to the coffee table or take their hands and begin the process of walking. These are tasks that, without our interference would eventually come about, but by taking them by the hand and providing the necessary environment and incentives for their success, we are ensuring that they will succeed without too many failures. There will be bumps and bruises, skin knees and scraps, but they will walk! And, if we have been “instructive” and supportive enough, they will RUN!
The same is true with our business. Take your team members by the hand, stand them next to the coffee table and support them as they take those first steps. Whether it be in their sales or in building their own team, they need a strong foundation to grow.
To build a team you must first make sure that each component is STRONGLY in place. To move up the ladder in leadership, each level has it’s qualifications. Don’t encourage or teach your recruits to “just” make the minimum. Work towards the “next” level of qualifications. Example – if you need $200 in sales for the first level and $250 for the next, push for the $250. You will be preparing yourself for future success by working a bit harder now. If the first level requires 3 orders, and then next is 5 orders, train your team so that you are getting those 5 orders now! This step can be the most difficult to achieve only if you stop adding business partners at 4 or 5. The law of averages tell us that to ensure your success in numbers, you MUST have the numbers. Build your team to 10, 12 or 15 and you will ensure not only the order count you need but, you will also ensure the total team sales needed to reach the first title level!
Take your “building” one step at a time. You wouldn’t try and install a door without first building the walls. Therefore, you must make sure that sales are solid and in place before you add the “doors and windows” (business partners). Your success and the success of your team will be more solid and secure if you build one step at a time. Crawl, walk, run!!
You just purchased a new car and realize that you need a place to keep it safe and out of the weather. You decide to build a garage. Garages are typically built with cinder or cement blocks as the foundation, if not the entire structure. Through a “little math” and some measurements, you calculate the number of blocks that you will need to purchase. Now, have you given thought to all that is needed to create the garage that you need to protect your vehicle not just next year, or for the five years of your auto loan, but for many years to come?
Imagine if the lumber yard delivers your blocks on Friday and you begin construction bright and early Saturday morning. You are eager to get started and get your car in your new garage. You start laying the blocks, one on top of the other stacking them to the height and width of your drawing (blueprint). Very shortly you realize that your plan was not well thought out, and your walls begin to crumble. Several blocks actually break under pressure and are no longer usable or of any use to your plan. Now what. Do you go back to the store and purchase a few more blocks and continue along the same line? Or, maybe you stop and look at your plan and decide you need to re-evaluate your construction and start again. However, you still follow the same structure plan and again, maybe adding a few new materials but still your building begins to crumble.
By now, you have realized that you need some help, some tools and materials to create a stronger and more reliable structure. You get cement, some rebar and your new plan now has you staggering the blocks instead of placing them one on top of the other. Your walls begin to take shape, they are standing tall on their own, and your garage is now beginning to look like the structure your imagined, a place secure for your new car.
This analogy is to show you that you need to build a strong business the way you build any strong structure. You need the proper tools, the right plan, and the knowledge to put them all together in the correct way.