Side Hus­tle

Working Mother - - Contents -

How sell­ing Pam­pered Chef trans­formed meal­time for this full-time at­tor­ney and her fam­ily.

“I don’t have mom guilt when I’m work­ing on my busi­ness.”

As a full-time at­tor­ney and part­ner at my own law firm, it never crossed my mind to try direct mar­ket­ing. But after I suc­cess­fully hosted a Pam­pered Chef cook show—a party, usu­ally in some­one’s home, where a con­sul­tant demos prod­ucts, friends cook a meal to­gether, and the host can earn cred­its to buy items—my pal, who led the party, en­cour­aged me to try it.

At first I thought she was crazy—how was I go­ing to find the time? And I thought I was fail­ing at meal­time. My busy sched­ule made get­ting food on the ta­ble dif­fi­cult, so I thought, “I can do this for me, and do meal­time, and get the kids in­volved, and be healthy.”

In April 2016, I started my busi­ness. I saw a profit within the first 30 days, and skipped sev­eral pro­mo­tion lev­els to be­come a direc­tor, sign­ing five con­sul­tants in my first 90 days.

The Hours

I spend seven to 15 hours a week on my side busi­ness, usu­ally work­ing on it late in the evening when my kids are asleep or early in the morn­ing when the house is quiet. A good chunk of what I do is on­line—even cook shows can be done vir­tu­ally—so I can work from any­where. I’ll put up Face­book posts and send email blasts through­out the day, even when I’m at my son’s ball­game.

The Bal­anc­ing Act

I work 60 hours a week on av­er­age as a lawyer. But I have some sched­ule flex­i­bil­ity be­cause I’m a share­holder.

In the be­gin­ning, I had vir­tual cook par­ties on Fri­day nights, and I learned that wasn’t good for my sched­ule. Now I start and fin­ish those par­ties on Sun­days, since that’s when I have the most time to close them.

When my kids see me re­ceive and test out new prod­ucts, they want to help. They as­sist me with sev­eral recipes, like quinoa en­ergy balls, which re­quire our man­ual food pro­ces­sor.

I don’t have mom guilt work­ing on my busi­ness be­cause my kids have fun and are learn­ing good, healthy habits.

The Money

As soon as I be­came a direc­tor, I started mak­ing any­where from $700 to $2,500 a month, which in­cludes earn­ings from the par­ties I do, sales I make, and re­cruit­ing.

Lead­ing a team, you get a higher com­mis­sion per­cent­age, plus bonuses from your team, de­pend­ing on how many mem­bers there are, the num­bers they hit, and when you all reach cer­tain sales and pro­mo­tion lev­els.

I’ve earned enough to take my fam­ily on va­ca­tions, and re­cently we did some land­scap­ing at our house.

Get­ting Started

There are three starter kits: The small­est is $109 and pro­vides on­line and home-of­fice train­ing, recipes, party packs, cat­a­logs, fliers and in­struc­tions on how to build a team. It also in­cludes re­cently launched items and prod­ucts for your cook shows.

I in­vested in the small­est kit and paid only $59 for it, since I re­ceived cred­its from host­ing a cook show.

Sales Secrets

If peo­ple are dis­cussing recipes, I men­tion the prod­ucts, or if some­one just got en­gaged, I men­tion the Pam­pered Chef bridal reg­istry. There are so many av­enues to get into some­one’s life, and then it spreads by word of mouth.

And cook shows are cru­cial for gen­er­at­ing your cus­tomer base and find­ing peo­ple who want to host par­ties.

I’m all about mak­ing life eas­ier and more fam­ily-fo­cused for work­ing moms. I ex­plain what works for me or show the con­ve­nience of cer­tain items so cus­tomers want the prod­ucts.

The Fun Part

I’m very goal-ori­ented. If some­one says, “This is what you need to do, and this is how you can get there,” I’m go­ing for it. I don’t like to call Pam­pered Chef a hobby; it’s more than that. I’m pas­sion­ate about my busi­ness, not just be­cause of the fo­cus on food and fam­ily, but also be­cause I’m fo­cus­ing on my­self. Pam­pered Chef is help­ing me achieve per­sonal goals.

LAURA LUETJE At­tor­ney and Pam­pered Chef direc­tor, Ankeny, IA, mom of Carter, 6, and Claire, 4 By Maricar San­tos

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