Shaping the future

One of Dr. Anuradha Nagarajan’s former M.B.A. students made international news in 2011 when she invented an improved, low-cost and life-changing way for women in rural India to carry water over rough terrain.

This past Saturday, Dr. Nagarajan – along with Amway Chief Sales Officer John Parker and Cofounder Andi Sie – issued a similar challenge to another 40 University of Michigan business students.

The task: Use principles of entrepreneurship to create more sustainable economies and bring more of the world’s growing population into the middle class.

Nagarajan, Parker and Sie participated on the Entrepreneurship Panel of the 24th Annual Asia Business Conference in Ann Arbor, themed “Discover the Possibilities: Shape the Future,” and students from Japan, Korea, China, Thailand, USA, India, Indonesia and Malaysia attended.

Parker touched on how Amway measures success by the number of people we can help start their own small, independent businesses, bringing more economic and personal flexibility and independence to their lives.

Sie covered his experience in the real estate, health care and technology sectors as an entrepreneur who abides by one rule: Have a purpose. Purpose, said Sie, is the key to success that helps entrepreneurs get through the inevitable hard times.

Students were asked by the panelists to consider:

  • The advantages of remaining privately held, like Amway, so that taking the “long view” on solving local or global challenges is possible, over short-term gains for investors.
  • Remaining authentic to who you are, and your purpose, in all communications.
  • Understanding cultural drivers such as loyalty in Japan and youth empowerment in Vietnam.
  • A tenet that Amway founders lived by: Act as a guest in every country where you do business; act as if you want to be invited back tomorrow; and the next day, and the next. Never forget that it is a privilege to be doing business in countries outside of your own.
  • Be adaptable, but not indecisive.
  • The “official” first answer of almost anyone, be it a potential partner, a potential new customer, or an investor, will always be “no.” Don’t take “no” for an answer.
  • Read the book, “Delivering Happiness.” It inspired Sie and helped him realize to not only seek opportunity, but to give opportunity to others.

It was a unique chance for students to get real world inspiration to shape the future—their own and the world’s.


Today is the day

We’ve been planning all year and Amway Universal Children’s Day is finally here. Our friends in other timezones already have been busy with their projects.

And the more than 4,000 employees at our World Headquarters kicked off their work at midnight, building bikes for Elves & More of West Michigan, decorating lunch bags for Kids’ Food Basket and filling hygiene kids for victims of Typhone Haiyan in the Philippines via International Aid.

Want to know what’s happening in your part of the world? Check out our Instagram map where Amway employees and business owners and upload photos of their activities using #AmwayOnebyOne.

Even our spokespeople got involved. Check out what they had to say at our Amway One by One blog and keep up on all our global activities at

We want to say a big “Thank you!” to all of our employees and business owners across the globe who helped us reach the milestone of helping 10 million children in the first 10 years of our Amway One by One Campaign for Children.


Colossal pasta

You’re going to need a bigger plate if you want some of this ravioli.

At 29.28 meters long – more than 96 feet long – it’s the newest Guinness World Records™ entry for world’s longest ravioli. It was cooked up by Amway Russia in St. Petersburg on August 3, shattering the six-year-old previous record by more than five meters.

For perspective: 29 meters is the equivalent of 16 men lying head to toe.

It took 10 Amway Business Owners and journalists 90 minutes to roll out and stuff the colossal pasta. They worked under the leadership of iCook™ cookware expert Alexey Semenov and three professional chefs. The ravioli weighed 20 kilograms (more than 44 pounds).

The St. Petersburg event also included 100 Amway Business Owners and journalists vying for top honors for the best ravioli cooked in the iCook pasta set. Judges included TV anchor and culinary blogger Elena Usanova and Amway Russia leaders.

Guinness adjudicator Jack Brockbank was on hand to make the world record official.

Guinness World Records is universally recognized as the authority on record-breaking achievement. Its mission is to inspire ordinary people to do extra-ordinary things. For Amway Russia, mission accomplished!


Launched with permission

We’re fond of saying that Amway is a global business that thinks and acts locally.  It’s a statement that guides everything we do, including the building of new facilities.

Take, for example, the start of construction on our new $95 million manufacturing plant in India. Following Hindu culture, we began our efforts with a ceremony called Bhoomi Puja, which means “Land Worship.” The ceremony requests permission from Mother Earth for goodwill and assistance as well as forgiveness for the disruption of many living things already on and in the land.

The end result is a 64-part diagram drawn in the northeastern part of the construction site symbolizing the Vaastu Purusha, or the energy surrounding the location.  The event culminated with the digging of a pit nearby and the first stone being laid in it, marking the beginning of construction.

We’re excited to see what the future brings as we progress toward the opening of the facility in 2015. See more photos on our Amway Facebook page.


People Mover

In Amway’s home state of Michigan, USA, residents know The People Mover as the railway that runs, elevated, along a 2.9-mile loop in Detroit’s central business district. But at this week’s Direct Selling Association Annual Meeting, completely different breeds of “people movers” took the stage. 

 First, DSA President Joe Mariano kicked off the Celebrate What’s Right theme with some exciting news:

  • U.S. direct sales are up 5.9% year-over-year
  • Research shows that 14% of U.S. households have at least one direct seller
  • People are two times more likely today than they were five years ago to consider becoming a direct seller
  • In the state of Montana, DSA members are exempt from the registration and renewal requirement with the Security Commissioner’s office by virtue of their existing commitment to DSA’s self-regulatory requirements


Then, keynote speaker Daniel Pink presented research insights and memorable takeaways from his book “To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others.” Pink believes that the best way to move others is to be yourself, a message that hits home in the world of direct selling, where people of every background can – and do – achieve.  

The DSA also welcomed new members, other companies that commit to the organization’s ethical business practices such as Sozo and Jillian Chase; celebrated the 40th anniversary of the Direct Selling Education Foundation; presented the 2013 Ethos Awards (Amway won in the Technology Innovation: Mobile Technology category.); and named incoming board members and committee chairpersons.  

The meeting’s final keynote speaker was 20-year National Geographic photographer and movie producer DeWitt Jones, who photographed the child above. Jones used his extraordinary photographs to illustrate balance, inspiration and answer-finding. His words and images were incredibly moving – as much so as the DSA parties, presentations and people themselves.


Lights, camera, action

We are preparing to welcome about 200 members of our 2013 Founders Council to West Michigan next week, and for the first time ever you are invited to watch part of the festivities.

We will present a live broadcast of their arrival at our World Headquarters in Ada, Michigan. The one and a half hour live-stream will air on May 14th at 2:00 p.m. EDT via a special tab on Amway Corporate Facebook page.

Thanks to new technology – our Amacam – we are able to share all the glamour and excitement of the event with Amway distributors, prospects and friends around the globe.

The Amacam consists of three high-definition cameras (two inside and one outside) that will showcase the members as they arrive to walk the yellow carpet and be welcomed by hundreds of Amway employees.

Attendees to this year’s Founders Council group come from 15 different countries and include 11 new Founders Council members!

So, mark your calendar and plan to join us for the celebration. (How many of our top distributors will you be able to identify?)

Post by Gary Wade.


It Started with a Conversation


When Amway and Microsoft recently hosted an event celebrating and promoting women leaders in business, people took notice – including contributor Anne Doyle, who wrote:

“When two global corporations with the economic impact and cultural  influence of Amway and Microsoft – both reach and employ millions of consumers and change agents all over the world —  recognize that the women’s leadership engine is revving up and they’d better get on board, the possibilities for paradigm shifting change are enormous.”

More than 200 women attended the event, which started with a conversation between Amway managers and their Microsoft account executive about the need to better support women seeking leadership roles.

It resulted in a daylong gathering that included keynote speeches from Amway Chief Marketing Officer Candace Matthews and Microsoft Americas Premier Support Vice President Kelly Rogan, who explained why being a “street fighter” is just as important as being a great collaborator.

We can’t wait to see where this conversation leads.

(Guest post by Nick Wasmiller)


Getting into the running gear

All types of people participate in Team Nutrilite running events around the globe. And many of our Nutrilite employees make running part of their routine, too, since its an excellent way to work toward optimal health.

As in years past, Nutrilite is paying the entry fee for its employees to run in the upcoming OC Marathon in Newport Beach, California. They’ll be wearing their Nutrilite gear and representing the company.

Participants come from across the departments at our Buena Park and Lakeview locations, and many are stepping up their training for the event. Some will be running the 5k, others the half marathon and we even have a few in the full marathon – all 26.2 miles of it.

To get you into the running spirit — and keep you focused on ways to pursue your own optimal health — we’re featuring three runners from the warehouse in Buena Park that are challenging themselves this year.

  • Ole Andrade is running the full marathon – 26.2 miles (42km).
  • Steve Huizar is running the half marathon – 13.1 miles (21km).
  • And Rosa Martinez is running the 5k race (3.1 miles).

Learn more about them by visiting our Nutrilite Facebook page. And check back after the May 5 event for photos of the race and to see how our runners fared.


Lessons learned

If you want to learn how to create a global career, ask someone who has one. That’s what the Harvard Business School Women’s Student Association did when they invited Amway CMO Candace Matthews to be part of its Harvard Dynamic Women in  Leadership Forum February 23.

Candace joined Tata Consulting Services head Farzana Haque in a panel discussion about how they developed and navigate careers that span the globe.

Candace’s lesson for success on a global scale?  “You have to have a yearning for learning,” she told the group. “You must have the desire to learn about other cultures, what motivates them and how they define success.”

For those starting out she advised learning four key words and phrases – hello, goodbye, please and thank you - to show interest and a connection with other cultures.

After spending time with the students, Candace sat down with the Harvard Business Review (HBR) to tape a lesson for the HBR Channel on how to stand up for yourself in business.  It was a lesson she learned long ago and was happy to pass along to the next generation of business leaders.  The video lesson will be online in April.


Innovation, imagination and creativity

The distributors who won Amway Europe’s Home Demo Contest this year had an experience they won’t soon forget – including being treated like movie stars while they filmed their winning demonstrations.

But they’re not the only ones: Our research scientists at our World Headquarters won’t forget the Home Demo Contest, either.

“What we saw in the distributor Demo Contest was innovation of applications,” Amway Senior Research Scientist Bob Faber said. “And those innovative applications and innovative uses of product shed new light on what we need to be … in the R&D environment, concentrating on in the future.”

Faber and other researchers praised distributors creativity, imagination and innovation. Watch the video to see the story behind the contest and how much fun – and educational — it was for our researchers.

Congratulations, again, to our winners!

YouTube DirektAmway Home Demo Contest Video