Leading the way... the Mary Kay way...

Seminar, and how not to drive your husband crazy! by Jeff McPheeters

[note: this was written several years ago, but I think it is something that is good to re-read, especially by Mary Kay couples trying to plan for the up-coming Seminar and whether it would be worthwhile for the husband to attend!]

Seminar was fabulous this year, wasn't it? Guys, if you didn't go, you have my sympathy. You probably have sore ears from your wife's attempts to somehow convey the excitement from this year's extravaganza. I haven't attended every seminar, so I know what it's like to try and act enthusiastic or even interested while she describes what's hard to imagine even when you are right there!

Let's just say, it was really full: full of great inspiration, incredible entertainment, motivating speeches and unmatched energy. 'Nuff said.

While at seminar I hear a lot of comments and spend most of my time listening to my wife talk with people or capturing events and peoples' reactions in the cameras. It occurred to me that I've been quite fortunate in many respects, because each Seminar I have attended has been enjoyable for me as a husband due to some things Priscilla does to make it particularly rewarding to me. So I'm going to share some of those things she does with you all in hopes that perhaps they will add substance to some of your goal setting ideas. These aren't in order of importance. They are just things she does that helps to make the time in Dallas one to which I look forward with excitement rather than dread!

1. Nice hotels. We stay in the top Seminar hotels such as the Wyndam Anatole. We've stayed in several different hotels over the years, but they are all 5 star hotels with impeccable service with ready access to the convention center and other events. It's a little more expensive, but not more than a couple good skin-care classes worth, and it's worth it, believe me! I want to stay where Nationals stay! (Next year I'm rooming with one! ;-)

2. Arrive early. We come in a day in advance because it's so much less hectic to get to the hotel before the rush and have time the morning of Day 0 to get registered and wander around a bit. Since we drive in, I also get to reacquaint myself as to how to negotiate downtown to and from the convention center. Since I'm only there once a year at most, I tend to forget all the "short cuts!"

3. Freedom. Priscilla doesn't expect me to go to every class or event with her. She knows I sometimes want to do my own thing and that's fine. There's lots to do and see in Dallas. I like to attend most events now because I'm filming or shooting our Directors for our video presentations. But in the early days I went on the men's activities or came up with my own. We have friends in Dallas and sometimes I'd just hang out with them. Sometimes we'll have the boys with us and I might be doing stuff with them rather than going to all the events.

4. Arena. This is one of the things Priscilla does that makes it most fun for me to be at Seminar. We always sit in the Arena. We've never had to sit in Hall A. Nothing against Hall A, but there's no comparison to being in the Arena! The energy is an order of magnitude above anyplace else. If you are a consultant, do whatever it takes to earn Arena seating. Your husband, should he attend, deserves that!

5a. Cadillac. Since we drive, we've always driven in a Mary Kay car, but for the guys, you want to have the Cadillac. Seriously. When I take Priscilla's car into town to get it serviced or gassed up, I don't get the same kinds of looks I get in Dallas. When I bring the Cadillac around front of the Wyndam to pick up Priscilla and some of her gals, all those people there kind of stare ...it's a special stare ...it's a stare that says ...."oooh, I wonder what superstar goes with that man!" Everywhere you get the "look" or the "nod" that says "good job, way to go!"

5b. Cadillac Unit. You aren't a director? Well, your director needs to be in a Cadillac and it's a team effort to earn that car. All Cadillac Unit members dine in their own dining area at Seminar, the food's better and the atmosphere is a step up. Everyone knows if you want to impress a guy, feed him well. It's true. I want my wife to earn the good food! I'll watch the boys more often if it means steak instead of hotdogs! Attending Seminar is a whole lot better when you get to eat in "privileged" dining areas!

6. Special Awards Luncheons. If you aren't driving a Cadillac or aren't in a Cadillac Unit, there are still other special awards dinners. Find out what they are well in advance and earn the right to be there! If your husband knows about these, he's more likely to come. If he comes, he's more likely to come back again next year! Hey, why stop there? Earn a place in the gala event: the Royalty Reception prior to the Award Night ceremonies where you get to rub shoulders with the most excited and successful consultants and directors (and their husbands) in attendance! Anyone can earn an invitation, but don't wait too long to start working toward it! Men, think MOUNTAINS of food!

7. Stage Presence! Priscilla is always on stage. She's on stage so much she hardly gets to watch the program! But even if she's on stage only a little, it's something that I find personally rewarding. I like to see her treated well by the company. But in order to gain that recognition from the company, she needs to treat her business with the same respect so that it can do it's job to earn her the right to be recognized by the company at Seminar. I get a certain amount of indirect recognition by her direct recognition. The other men attending whose wives are on stage get to kind of know one another and there's a fraternal spirit of "understanding" among us. It's good for our egos and it's great for our wives' growth in this business.

8. Unit Recognition! Priscilla works more now for her directors and DIQs to get recognition than she does for her own, but that's great because her goal as an NSD is to promote women to Directorship and beyond. Well, it's a big part of our time at seminar just watching and enjoying the success of our Directors and future Directors as they get to march across stage and receive recognition for their work and for their units' work.

9. Organized. Sounds boring, but Priscilla knows where and when we're to be places and how long it takes to get there, etc. We don't end up running around lost. She doesn't miss her stage calls and she makes sure the new consultants and first time attendees or new directors know what's next and keeps them on track for their recognition opportunities. This keeps everyone happy! And it's another reason we come a day early because it helps her to perpare not only for her own events but to prepare her people for their events.

10. Unbridled enthusiasm. Priscilla truly enjoys watching others shine and accomplish great things. Her enjoyment and enthusiasm makes it easy for me to relax and just have a good time. She doesn't waste energy with criticism or analysis. She doesn't talk down about anyone or anything at seminar. She constantly works to make everyone from the hotel staff to the convention center workers to the countless Mary Kay staff persons aware of her gratefulness for all they do to make this 3 or 4 days a memorable and smooth-sailing event!

There are other things she does, I'm sure, but these come to mind and they are things that can be modeled by others. The one thing Priscilla is almost never guilty of is "shoulding" on herself! Life is too short to spend the present regretting the past, "I should have done this" or "I should have done that." Learn from it, and if you're tired of where you're, it's like being tired of lying in bed in the morning; until you get up and get out you'll still be in bed, and probably still tired.

This year, the 40th anniversary of Mary Kay, the company has gone all out to make it possible for you all to have your best and most incredible year ever! You can do it! And I'm really looking forward to getting that permanent floor seating right in front of the stage as the husband of an NSD so I can get great pictures year after year of our incredible Legacy Area directors and consultants building their dreams into reality!

As they say in the ol' west, don't miss the stage! Next year, you can be on that stage as your new area debuts! And men, that will be an event worth the price of admission! You won't want to miss it!
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