As part of our partnership with Avon, I’ll have the opportunity to highlight a couple of representatives and even attend a local Avon meeting in order to learn more about the daily lives of Avon representatives. This past month, I spoke with an Avon representative from Texas who’s owned an Avon business for 15 years! Her story is actually quite inspiring and she was a pleasure to speak with. Her energy is admirable and it was clear to me why she’s so successful when she ended our conversation by asking me, “Would you like to be an Avon representative? It’s very easy!”
Sylvia Tamayo is a native of Mexico and moved to Texas 18 years ago. One day, as she and her daughters went for their daily walk, Sylvia met a District Sales Manager who was recruiting new Avon representatives. Since Sylvia was actually looking for an opportunity, she seized the opportunity and signed up on the spot. Sylvia was a bit familiar with Avon already, as her mom used to sell Avon in Mexico when Sylvia was about 6 years old.
Sylvia runs her Avon business full-time, saying she works from 9 am – 6 pm Monday through Friday. She also sometimes conducts business on weekends or in the evening, primarily for business calls or meetings. Despite the busy work schedule, Sylvia says her Avon business allows for flexibility in work hours when compared to a traditional job. For example, she explained to me that if her children have appointments, she can work around them.
When I asked Sylvia about work-life balance and how she balances her business with her family, she said she multitasks and combines many responsibilities. Her day normally starts at 6 am and she makes sure to keep business going by “sharing the opportunity wherever, whenever,” even at the doctor’s office. That’s why she carries her business cards with her at all times. In order to keep her home-based business and family separate, though, Sylvia does try to maintain her schedule of 9-6. If she needs to, she stops working and attends to her family and after 6 pm, her time is reserved for family.
According to Sylvia, her community is 99% Hispanic and almost 90% of the 900 representatives in her down-line are Latina. She says she likes to help people and teach them, which has been her number one motivation for continuing as an Avon representative all these years. She enjoys helping other representatives and it gives her great satisfaction when other representatives succeed and no longer have financial problems.
Sylvia earns a full-time income as an Avon Senior Executive Unit Leader and pays for most of her household’s expenses. She says the key is to start every day as if you are a new representative and share the opportunity with everyone, at least five new people each day. Sylvia mainly recruits new representatives face-to-face. The majority of her sales come from face-to-face interactions and personal customers. She hosts an exclusive party for her customers twice a year, which provides them with an incentive to purchase from her.
Her success was recently recognized by Avon and Sylvia was invited to appear in a national TV ad. You can check out Sylvia in the commercial, found below, which ran on networks such as Oxygen and Bravo.
I think much can be learned from Sylvia’s story. It’s clear she’s worked hard to build a successful business, yet retains some of the energy, motivation, and drive one initially has when starting a business. Her passion definitely shows, which I’m sure is a driving force in ensuring her success. Many thanks to Sylvia for sharing her story with me and helping me learn about her business!
Disclosure: I am being compensated for my work with Avon.