Thanks Mom, for championing my cause…

Happy to report this comment from Michelle…


As Stan said, thanks for making us think. Also, thanks for articulating the reason why I’ve been uncomfortable with the recruiting emphasis in Shaklee.

Thanks for championing my cause, a part-time mom who wants to build an amazing customer base, earn my monthly “mad money”, and have fun while I’m doing it.

After reading your comments, I am more comfortable with my place in the business, and I don’t feel the need to justify my position to myself…

It’s a start…

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About the author

Kim Klaver


  • It is my observation that “uncomfortableness” comes NOT from the recruiting but rather NOT understanding WHEN and HOW to recruit.

  • ” and many of the old Excel reps doing the opportunity conference calls for the new deal. (Most of them have vanished. A notable exception is Kathi Minsky and I’d bet that she and her team made that entire episode worthwhile.)”

    I’m not sure which reps you mean that have vanished. Pat Hintze,Meg Kelly-Smith, Tommy Wyatt, Widger Associates, Bill Campion, Shawn & Carmen Gray, Cowboy Whitehead, and Scott Slocum were all with Excel and remain with Shaklee. They are all ethical business builders who build for the right reasons. Some have been customers for years. I know that the Fast Start bonuses were a downfall of Excel’s, as there was little real residual money being earned. I have also learned after the fact that a lot of the “Big Money Earners” were using dodgy tactics in building their businesses. Some of these left Excel before the bankruptcy. Truth be told, no one knows what could have happened with Excel if Vartec didn’t go under- let’s remember that was the reason it all came about. Changes could have made Excel a better company. I love Shaklee, I love the products, and I love the company and people that I have met. I feel that all are in this business for the right reasons, how they choose to build it is their choice. That’s why we go into business for ourselves.

    I love your sites, Kim, your trainings, and books. But saying that most of the leaders have vanished isn’t accurate. These leaders that I’ve mentioned have joined in with the hundreds of wonderful leaders that Shaklee already had, and they’re learning from them, also.

  • Maureen’s statement
    “Truth be told, no one knows what could have happened with Excel if Vartec didn’t go under- let’s remember that was the reason it all came about.”
    is a wise comment. There are so many factors that affect a business, linking the failure to one thing is very unlikely.

    The real issue or tone about the Shaklee discussion appears to be revolving around 2 things:
    (1) Should they focus on sponsoring?
    Of course they should!
    The whole basis of the MLM format is utilizing the power of appropriate sponsoring to create leverage.
    A person who is against sponsoring or the focus on it, should not be associated with MLM.

    Also when a MLM company is the size of Shaklee, it is ludicrous to think everyone inovlved is going to be perfect MLM role models. There are good and bad in any industry. Shaklee or any MLM company will be no different.

    (2) The other issue that appears to be a sentiment is that “everyones primary focus should be on retailing”.
    I am a firm believer that poor sponsoring habits are detrimental to building a business and reps should be cautious in how they prospect and approach prospects, but it is unwise to make prospecting seem like a bad thing.

  • Hey Gang,
    Kathi Minsky here.
    I have been asked by several members of my team to answer a few questions that arose as a result of comments posted on this blog.
    I am a Master Coordinator with Shaklee Corporation.
    I don’t have all the answers, but I will try to share the information I know to be true.
    One of the best way to clear up misunderstandings is with facts, so let me start there.

    As to the former Excel Group, Here are some facts.
    There were 23 Ambassadors in Excel.
    I am aware of 6 that came to Shaklee and 3 who are still working the business publicly.
    The Total number of Excel Distributors who came in under the official Sign-up period was reported to be just over 1600.
    It is estimated that out of the ORIGINAL group approximately 500 are still actively working their Shaklee business.
    These numbers do NOT include The Global Success Team as we did not participate in the Excel Program.
    Those numbers may seem discouraging at first blush, however this retention rate is actually extraordinarily high in the industry.
    Shaklee has proved to be a very profitable and exciting opportunity for those of us who made the decision to build a home here.
    Please understand, We are not disparaging anyone who had to make other decisions based on family circumstances or just the inability to crossover to a product company.
    The Excel Reps who felt they had to move on have my hope and prayers for a fabulous future.
    Those who chose to stay have a Bright and Wonderful 50 years ahead of us.

    Now, as to RECOGNITION,
    I did my research.
    There are 2 acid tests that I felt would show where Shaklee Corporation and Roger Barnett placed value.
    Was it Business Builders or Customer Gatherers?

    Where would you look for the answer.

    First would be the Pay Plan.
    You see, companies REWARD behavior they want REPEATED.
    Shaklee rewards Customer Gatherers up to 51% of the Volume of Products they sell each month.
    That is very high in our industry. Some say it is the # 1 Customer Pay plan in the entire industry.
    Business Builders are paid between 7 to 22% of the total volume of what they build.
    So, to say that Shaklee does not encourage Customer Gatherers does not hold water in the facts.

    The Next place to look for what Shaklee and Roger Barnett value would be in the Categories that Shaklee recognizes each month and at the Annual Conferences.
    I checked out both the Monthly and Annual Recognition Categories from My Shaklee.
    Here are the FACTS.
    Of the 25 categories Listed
    1 is exclusive to Master Coordinators
    8 are Directed at Business Leaders only
    14 are open to the General Field and primarily relate to Customer Gathering and Personal Group Sponsoring.

    Our team, The Global Success Team operates 2 distinct websites. is to help in Business Building activities. is provided for those wanting to share product information.
    The Product site gets more than triple the hits of the Business Builder Site.
    Customers are the life blood of both the Customer Gatherers and the Business Builders.
    You cannot separate them from either activity.

    I hope this helps everyone to understand that to say “Shaklee Corporation or Roger Barnett value Business Builders over Customer Gatherers” is just not consistent with the FACTS.
    It is a “Chicken or Egg” scenario.

    We are one and the same.
    We are Shaklee.
    We need to respect and support each others choices.
    I support yours.

    With Warm Regards,
    Kathi Minsky
    Master Coordinator
    Shaklee Corporation

  • Thanks for your perspective Stan. I wonder though how many network marketers would agree with you that “A person who is against sponsoring or the focus on it, should not be associated with MLM.”

    I know hundreds of people in Shaklee who have a nice customer base of hundreds, and who have either not sponsored people, or those they did sponsor, are long gone.

    Have you found success yourself with this approach? Of sponsoring only? I mean have you hit the top spot with Shaklee aready? If so, obviously carry on. If not, well now there’s another option. Which you need not do, of course. The Buddha said it best…

    “Believe nothing, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.” This of course would be true for people who prefer amassing customers, and for those who prefer recruiting.” (from quotable magnet on my fridge.)

    So perhaps there is no one way that is best for all, think?


  • Hi Kathi!

    Good stuff and very good info. So half the Ambassadors who started are gone and 2/3 of the rest. Well, good to have the numbers.
    I’m happy Maureen brought up the accuracy of the “vanishing” comment I made – now look we have much more than we expected.
    I agree that Shaklee has perhaps the highest paying plan for customers. However, there is no fast start bonus for getting customers, like there is for recruits. And there is no customer retention bonus I’m aware of. There should be, in my humble opinion, especially given that close to 95% of everyone is a customer in the company, anyway. And I think a category of recognition might be established for the “mad money women” or “nylon women” who earn a steady $300-400 per month, and who might tell others how they fit that into their lives – in 5-7 hours per week.

    Maureen – thanks for the good comments which generated good discussion. I had wanted only to point out that compared to the noise many of the recruiters make, most disappear. In this case, half the Excel Ambassadors and 2/3 of the rest. I was comparing to the customers, who are much larger in numbers (95% perhaps) and who do not vanish into thin air or defect just because their sponsors have disapppeared. But you are correct, too. The numbers don’t look as bad, as Kathi points out, when compared to the general drop out rate for the recruiters in any networking company.

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