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How I Succeeded By Failing

July 14, 2008

By all accounts, I failed at building an Amway/Quixtar business. Yet in failing, I discovered that I had actually succeeded. Here’s how:

A loyal member to my upline and follower of my Amway Motivation Organization’s System (AMO), I showed many plans during my two and a half years in the business. Yet I was unable to sponsor more than a handful of people, all of whom promptly became inactive. At the time, I wondered what I was doing wrong; after all, I was following all the steps for success prescribed by my System.

It was only after I had left that I came to the conclusion that I failed through no fault of my own. I feel that the Systems and the Opportunity are set up in a way to make it incredibly difficult for IBOs to achieve sustained success. That is not to say that no one is reaching higher and higher pins; Amway’s own Achieve magazine profiles new Diamonds and Emeralds every month. Are these Diamonds and Emeralds, however, sustaining their businesses year after year? Do they continually hit higher levels and/or maintain Founders/Q-12 status? Do they fall out of qualification and/or disappear from stage and the IBO ranks? To new and current IBOs, how is your business doing? Are you continually achieving to larger pins or are you continually telling yourself that success is just around the corner? How long have you have been saying this to yourself?

Contrary to what may be said on stage, quitting does not mean you are a loser. In fact, you may find that you have more to gain by quitting than by staying on. Some of the skills taught within the various AMOs are very useful in your career and personal life. Of course, they are other means by which one can learn these skills than by building a successful — or in my case, unsuccessful — Amway/Quixtar business.

I made the decision to do something different, and for me, that meant quitting as an IBO. Surprisingly, my upline Silver and Direct told me they understood and respected my decision.

Over the years, I’ve built my career and personal life to the point where I can look back and be satisfied with where I am today and where I am going tomorrow. This satisfaction comes from having demonstrable results year after year. I encourage everyone — IBO or not — to have annual goals. Write them down and evaluate them at the end of the year. If the facts say you are not where you want to be, you have a decision to make. Keep doing what you’ve been doing or do something else.

I chose to do something else, and by failing at building an Amway/Quixtar business, I succeeded.

21 Comments leave one →
  1. Free from Q* permalink
    July 14, 2008 8:17 pm

    Looks like I may be first to chime in!

    Best of luck on the blog and look forward to reading more of your postings.

    I, too, also list leaving the A/Q business as a major “success” in my life.


  2. Derrick permalink
    September 22, 2008 1:07 pm

    Who stole your dream?

    I’m building a successful Amway Global Business powered by WWDB. I have found that anytime someone gets their business started, they do it for a specific reason. If they give up, it’s because they started shrinking their dreams and goals to match their income or present situation. They then begin to justify that decision by trying to find fault or place blame on others. It’s a natural thing to do if someone starts going down that path.

    If you could honestly tell me that you have not done this, I would congratulate you. Have you kept or even increased the goals and ambitions you had when you started your Amway Global business, or have you shrunk them down to something much smaller? If you did shrink them, why are you trying so hard to stop someone else from succeding?

  3. September 22, 2008 1:15 pm

    Derrick: My financial situation is light-years better now than it ever was while an IBO. If I knew then what I know now, I would never have signed up to be an IBO, and we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

    My tale is a cautionary one; if you see and experience some of the same things that I have, maybe you’ll understand why I left.

  4. August 28, 2009 1:08 pm

    Derrick you realize the comment you left here can be seen as more Amway propaganda? It’s assuming that if anyone stops the business it’s because they don’t want succeed in anything anymore.

    Why does a paperboy quit his business? Why does a kid quit his lemonade stand? It’s simply because one perceives something better out there than what they are currently doing. It’s not because someone gives up the dream of being the best lemonade stand salesman or the person who perfectly places the paper for the customer.

    It sounds like Amthrax had better opportunities come along that allow him to reach his dream quicker. I applaud him for taking them.

    At the same time, it’s great that he’s educating others. Remember, he’s not biased like other Amway distributors. It’s commendable that he’s spending his time to helping others for no gain of himself.

  5. contuls permalink
    April 29, 2013 8:38 pm

    I wouldn’t say you’re stopping someone if it was a mistake to begin with. Someone on another blog posted with some calculations… with the amount of time and money you’d spend on throwing meetings, driving, fees they make you pay; all to POSSIBLY get some downlines, ends up being worse than a part time job. On average, most people don’t bother with Amway, so you’re left with only 1 downline, which is NOT ENOUGH to be making the money they promise.

  6. May 1, 2013 6:30 am

    “I wouldn’t (sic) say you’re stopping someone if it was a mistake to begin with. ”

    I simple concept/truth but who get is not is an adherent’s mind high like a Georgia pine on kool aide, even in the face of quantifiable, incontestable evidence.

  7. worldwide dreambuilder permalink
    September 21, 2014 6:03 pm

    you know what the deepest darkest secret of Amway is? hardly anyone does it, but the people that do are filthy rich. 2 questions amthrax. 1: do you think diamonds are made in two and a half years? its a 2 to 5 year plan. if you had at least tried for 5 years you might receive some kind of credit. theres tons of people in amway who are in it for 5 years and don’t do anything. it takes 2-5 years of HARD CONSISTENT WORK. 2: you may be making more money now but do you have the time that you want to go along with it? that’s the thing about amway is that it offers incredible time and money. is it hard, of course. that’s why so few people do it. do you think its easy to get in the NFL? no but you don’t tell a kid that spends hundreds of dollars on camps and spends his whole life in the weight room or practice just to be a pro that hes fanatical and in a cult. if I said hey I never made it to the nfl, youd say well hey you probably didn’t work hard enough at it or have incredible talent. which takes both in amway. you either have talent or you have to develop your talent and work really hard. and id rather be in amway than the nfl because the pay in amway is residual and it gives me that kind of money AND time. that’s what were fighting for. complete freedom. a winner just needs to know one person succeeded to know they can succeed. a loser only needs to know one person failed to quit. and for anyone who is reading this blog to decide on whether or not to be in worldwide group and amway id do this. ask for mr amthraxs personal phone, his sponsors phone and his upline platinums phone number. call them up and ask each one specifically how CORE he was. they will know what you mean. my guess is you weren’t consistently core for 2-5 years. if this blog was really unbiased youd have a detailed account of the things you did and didn’t do with comments from your team to confirm it. until I see a blog do that and prove me wrong, youll have no credibility. and youll be nothing more than another angry quitter making another angry blog because they cant accept responsibility. and if you delete this comment than will know who was really right amthrax.

  8. amused permalink
    September 22, 2014 11:07 am

    @dreambuilder: what makes your comments any more credible that amthrax’s? By your own definition of what makes you credible, I’d like to see your personal phone number, your sponsor’s phone number, and your upline platinum’s phone number so I can call them up and ask them just how CORE you are. Otherwise I’m afraid I can’t believe anything you say on a blog on the internet. Because, after all, anyone can say or claim whatever they want, right? Isn’t that why you discredit anyone speaking poorly of Amway or other MLM’s? Why do different rules apply to your comments? I think you’re making it all up about how great Amway is because I can’t verify anything you claim, by your own rules.

  9. exTEAMster permalink
    September 24, 2014 12:08 pm

    dreambuilder…. Someone who dreams of making it to the NFL has to go through certain qualifying stages to reach that goal. You generally have to have shown a better-than-average ability at the high school level to make it at the collegiate level. Of the thousands of collegiate players, only those with exceptional skills are drafted into or signed as free agents by NFL teams. Of those who are invited to compete for spots on the roster, only 2,016 players can occupy spots on NFL rosters and practice squads. At various points in the journey, players are given the chance to compete against others to showcase their skill levels. So no one would be accused of being in a cult for believing they have a chance to play professional football unless they’ve seen where they stand in comparison to others who are attempting to reach that same goal.

    The problem with Amway (and a number of other MLMs) is — staying with the football analogy — they tell everyone who tries out for the team they can become star players if they just practice hard enough. And while there may not be the same kind of physical limitations that determine whether someone can play in the NFL, there are barriers that are not often properly explained to MLM participants. First and foremost, the low percentage of people that earn an income greater than that they can earn at their regular job. You can show people how much money NFL quarterbacks make, but not many people will be blunt enough to tell them fewer than 100 quarterbacks ever make NFL rosters in a given season.

    Second, how long does it take to earn a profit at the MLM as compared to their regular jobs? How much time will it take away from their family lives?

    Also, MLMs like Amway don’t produce residual income. They produce commissions. What’s the difference? Your Amway earnings are based on what people in your downline spend in a given month. If they don’t spend, you don’t earn. If it was true residual income, once you hit diamond level, you’d always earn what a diamond earns.

    What percentage of time spent in explaining any MLM business is spent outlining the average rate of attrition and what it takes to maintain an income level? None that I’ve ever seen.

    By all means, you should be proud of your achievements in Amway. But other people’s decision to leave isn’t always based on a lack of commitment. it sometimes is based on the realization that not everything works in an MLM like it was first explained.

  10. Freedom permalink
    March 17, 2016 12:59 pm

    Hi Amthrax. It would be helpful to know your name. There can be no credibility to your content without knowing who you are. Thanks for your consideration.

  11. March 18, 2016 8:14 am

    @Freedom – This question has come up time and time again, and I’m not going to provide this information. If you can’t verify the grand totality of what I’m writing about on this blog through your own independent research and verification, that’s on you.

  12. August 21, 2016 9:17 am

    The thing about MLM’s (I almost joined LIFE this weekend and have almost joined Amway earlier in my life) that always stands out like a red flag to me are the apologists. Being an apologist myself, what I am always leery of is rabidity and character assassination.
    You don’t get rabidity with employees from most other companies (Apple might be a growing exception). There is a certain belief you must have to be successful in MLM’s that you don’t have to have in other companies. It is a belief that the company can change their entire life, that it can meet every need. No company can promise this. This is religion’s job. Your career should not be your religion. It is too temporal for that.

    Even if we love our jobs we should be able to look critically at them. All companies are imperfect. What MLM apologists seem to do is to attack the character of the person who either does not want to join them or has left them. They say that their dreams weren’t big enough, or that they didn’t work hard enough. I think they do this because they are starving for new blood to pump into the system. Their businesses need it or MLMs might rip the rug out from under their feet, thereby reducing their status and making it even harder to make money.

    The MLM business model that few are legitimately successful at peddles illusive and intangible hopes and dreams. It prays on those who feel stuck. It tells you that your wildest dreams can be met. And because they encourage you to dream (dreams should be encouraged), if bought into, the MLM therefore becomes your dream’s surrogate. So any attack on the MLM is an attack on your dreams.

    When an MLM apologist finds a potential recruit who has dreams and goals of their own that they are literally pursuing it confuses the MLM apologist, when they are turned down. They think that since the MLM is the dream catcher that is helping them that any dream worth pursuing should just be put into the net and the MLM can help you realize your dreams that much faster. Again, the one shoe fits all is really only applicable to religious claims. This is religion’s realm, not business’. This is maybe when the flag turns the most red.

    In regards to Orrin Woodward’s book, “The Financial Matrix”, he is right about a lot. There really is a financial matrix. Debt is bad. It does enslave us. Government debt does affect is in crucial ways. The government is a big business, too big too allow to fail. It fills the pockets of too many politicians and special interests. There are too many warped and crooked hands digging into those pockets. Debt is a bondage maker. They are selling slavery. However, just because he is right about this does not mean that he knows how to get us out of it, nor does it mean that his way is the right way, the only way, or even a legitimate way. Christ is the only way. But that’s another tangent.

    Thank you AMTHRAX. I’m so grateful I found your site. Keep up the important work.

  13. August 22, 2016 4:53 am

    So appreciate, Josef, how you spiritually processed through the allurment of the mlm montra and came to a godly conclusion concerning what you were presented. Just wondered how much ‘realizing your dreams’ played into the presentation that you were given? Thought you might be interested in reading a couple of blogs that a lawyer for the FTC who is a whistle blower against mlm fraud has written. He, like you, processes through the legal side of mlm and draws some pretty damning conclusions about the fraud that exists in this ‘business’ The articles of interest are Why MLM is Invisible: Part 1 & 2


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