14 September 2007

Nearly 50

No, not me!  But I can't protest too much, because I'm closer to that age I'd like to admit.

Amway, however, is nearly 50 years old and will celebrate this anniversary in 2009.  Talk is already starting around the company about how to commemorate this milestone, from bringing IBOs from around the world to the place where it all started to capturing the illustrious history of the company in variety media.

I met with someone yesterday who's chronicling the history, and just spending a few minutes thinking about the past is a great reminder of the remarkable contributions of this company and the accomplishments of our co-founders, Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel.

I was fortunate to join the company when Rich and Jay were still at the helm, and even luckier to be assigned to handle some of their many speaking engagements.  I'd make the arrangements, handle logistics and media relations and very often accompany them and hear them speak and see the crowd's reactions. Jay Van Andel would command a crowd at such rapt attention that you could hear a pin drop as they eagerly awaited his next word.  Rich DeVos on many occasions told a story that inspired listeners to tears.  In fact, I sometimes gauged the success of an appearance by how many hankies I saw in the crowd.

I'll celebrate my 19th year here next March and my 20th when Amway turns 50.  And every year, like every other employee, my anniversary is recognized by my boss and others –  cards or notes thanking me and congratulating me on another year.  Milestone anniversaries — 5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 years of service — usually mean cake.  Anniversaries of 20 years or more can be marked with a reception in the employee's honor — but a lot of people don't want the fuss and attention.  But regardless of the year that's passed, it's always nice to stop and think about the contributions of every Quixtar team member and how they help IBOs be more successful. 

So when you think about nearly 50 years of Amway, from the start of this business in Rich and Jay's basements, how do you think we capture and celebrate the anniversary?  We can't do cake and coffee for every IBO, but what could we do to celebrate all that's happened and all the people who have been part of this business?  If you were planning the party, what would you do?  



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0 thoughts on “Nearly 50

  1. Beth,

    One can’t think of Amway without thinking of the people who are a part of it, who’s contributions have had such a dramatic and life changing positive impact on so many.

    Amway to me has always been more then just a business.  More then just products.  It’s always been about people.

    From my relationship with my upline and downline, and other IBOS; to my customers, who rely on me to provide them with quality products and service.  To my relationships with everyone I’ve had the good fortune to meet or talk with at Amway and Quixtar, the IBOAI, Nutrilite and BLI.

    From Rich and Jay, and now Doug and Steve; to everyone who we IBOs may never meet or know, but who do their jobs without complaining and often without any fanfare at all; who, without them, we could never do our jobs.

    The great folks who provide such wonderful support on the phones for us IBOs and our customers, who so often patiently take the time to help me or one of my downline or customers with a concern or just answer a question – all without complaining.

    Amway is about hope for a better future for our lives, our families, our communities, our relationships with one another, and respect for each person.  It’s about each and every one of us who are a part of this great business – the Amway business.

    And now as we celebrate this momentous occasion, thank you to everyone who have helped make it great!

    Let’s all celebrate these successes we’ve achieved during the first 50 years, and look forward with hope and optimism to the next 50!

    The best is yet to come!

    Happy 50th Amway!



  2. Hi Beth,

    Just wanted to say I am glad you are there doing everything you can to help us folks out here. Right now I am sure you feel like you are walking around in a mine field, what with all the snotty bloggers out there.

    Just know there are much more of us that appreciate you and the rest of the Q/A hard working employees. Keep up the good work.

    Whatever you do for a party, please videotape in and make it available on DVD or for download online so we can all enjoy it.

  3. I have no idea how far out big areans book, so it might be too late for this idea: During Summer 2008, have regional conventions with a full Expo all over the US and Canada. We even have a new 15,000 seat arena in Des Moines (hint, hint). Then in 2009, have the ultimate celebration / convention / expo in Grand Rapids/Ada. Make it about 3 or 4 days long. I think it would be incredible for any and all surviving "old-timers" (not meant negatively) to be the special guests of honor and have as many of them speak as possible.

    One thing that I think many people would find interesting would be an "Amway Museum" with a display of products and sales aids from 1959 to the present, and Amway products from all around the world. So, everyone, go look in your basements and garages for Liquid Tire Grip, Flashcoat, Leaf Shine Towelettes, Deter Deodorants, your old Crown Series cassettes, and even your special Winter 1980 issue of the Amagram which featured the dedication of the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel. (Uh oh, now I'm showing my age.)

  4. I know I am asking too much. Sure you cannot bring 3,000,000+ people to Ada to see and hear Amway co-founder Rich DeVos. But how about bringing Rich DeVos to people all over the world, so that ordinary distributors could see him? If I remember well, it is a very long time ago when Rich DeVos had a seminar in Europe. And those who were there speak about it even today…

  5. Dear Beth, Is it really only "almost-20" years since we met?

    First thing that pops in mind re what I remember is using my hanky at the Unveiling and Dedication of the big-as-life bronze statue of Rich and Jay, commissioned by the IBOA. I believe it was the Thursday afternoon before an annual convention, because only my dad and I could attend. My husband and mom had to work, so they could not come until Friday evening. Rich spoke eloquently, especially when he said, "I wish my dad could see this." Lots of hankies appeared.

    My 93-year-old mom still calls in her own orders for Nutrilite.


    Barb Robbins

    IBO 569554

  6. Is Amway going to celebrate by opening North America to the rest of the world and anyone can come here and build an Amway business?  At least that's what the new Quixtar registration forms indicate with the sponsor listed at the top.  Please correct if I'm wrong.  Beth, is opening the North American market part of the plan?

  7. Hopeully we'll also be celebrating the 1 or 2 year anniversary of having a cleaned up business, and not be under the cloud of an FTC investigation, as is happening now in the UK.

    Regional celebrations would be great.

    This also reminds me to get an update on the additional "Connections" conventions mentioned a few months ago. I understand if certain issues, such as the TEAM and name change fiascos have made this impractical for this year.  Also, there was talk of having a corporate approved marketing plan and contacting/followup tools. Any update on these?

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