10 business lessons you can learn from Mary KayEntrepreneurship

Before yesterday, I was a Mary Kay skeptic. I didn’t have anything against Mary Kay, but I didn’t know much about the business model, just knew people were always trying to sell me products.

This past weekend, my cousin Nadjege, owner of Le Studio De L’Adjege invited me to go to a Mary Kay meeting and get a facial. Immediately I asked her if I needed to buy or sign up for anything. Her response: “sigh… tell me why people think that about Mary Kay?”  I could only explain to her my previous experiences with Mary Kay. My previous experiences with Mary Kay consultants has been all about selling product. I can’t speak for everyone’s experiences, but often I am invited to a girl’s beauty night, but arrive only to find out it is a sales pitch. Nadjege explained the business aspect of it and told me to just come to the meeting. 

Imagine my surprise when I arrived at the Mary Kay meeting and it was a business training seminar. The set up reminded me of a mastermind group, but larger. The attendees were full of energy, but the star of the meeting was Nadjege’s director, Jo Ann Calvin. Jo Ann had a strong command of the topic, which was keeping track of money earned. Not only was she a great public speaker and  knowledgeable, she was inspirational. With her own check register in her hand, Jo Ann wrote on the board how she manages her money, gave examples of different types of accounts, and broke down the math of business revenue. 

She said many great things, but here are a few words of wisdom that stood out to me:

  • I don’t do zeros unless there’s a number in front of it. 
  • Every woman in this room should have their own bank account. 
  • Is this a business or a hobby?
  • You have to get started on the right foot. 
  • We are teaching women to be businesswomen, how to run a business, and how to track money. 
  • Make no assumptions on how someone became successful.
  • Stop making excuses for why you aren’t where you want to be. 
  • There’s no reason why no one should be as successful as the next person; it’s all about effort. 
  • Are you ready to put in the work?
  • Be powerful, be wonderful, and stretch yourself. 

I’m glad I went to the Mary Kay meeting with my cousin. I won’t become a consultant. Though, I won’t say never, but for what I am doing now in my life, I know I won’t dedicate the passion and drive needed to build a successful Mary Kay business. I will say, the women at that meeting, Nadjege, and Jo Ann changed me from a skeptic to a believer. I left the meeting inspired and motivated. 

There is so much more I could say, maybe I will take each bullet point and make a blog post out of it.


An urban planning PhD student finding peace in creating a balance between the mind, body, soul, & environment.

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Photo Credit: Lisa-Marie Pierre



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