December is a time of celebration. And what a pleasure it is to kick off my tenure as the new Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of Direct Selling News with our very own celebration. This month, almost the entire issue of the magazine is dedicated to our cover story celebrating “The Most Influential Women in Direct Selling.”
This year marks the third time we’ve chronicled the views of these inspirational leaders. But this time around, we handled things a little differently. Instead of simply profiling 20 of the channel’s top female executives, we instead asked them to share their thoughts via email on issues of importance to the segment as whole. Consider the resulting story a sort of “online roundtable discussion,” if you will. Writer J.M. Emmert details their thoughts on everything from gender parity in company C-suites and board rooms to the recruitment and retention of independent distributors to marketing to millennials and direct selling in the 21st century.
“According to studies such as Women in the Workplace by McKinsey and LeanIn.org, women remain underrepresented at every level of corporate America, despite having earned more college degrees than men have over the past 30 years,” Candace Matthews, Regional President, The Americas, for Amway, says in the article. “If we want to create more gender equality on the corporate side of the direct-selling business, companies need a comprehensive plan for supporting, advocating and advancing women. Organizations need to understand their particular barriers and address them directly.”
I’m certain you’ll find the insights and analyses these women of influence share fascinating and, perhaps, even a bit surprising.
This month also marks the start of another celebration—Direct Selling News begins work on our annual Global 100 ranking. Keep your eyes peeled for details on the project’s progress and information on how you can be a part of the 2018 Global 100 event in April. We’ll begin researching our list of the world’s largest direct selling companies in the coming weeks with the forms and event information available at directsellingnews.com after the first of the year. Please don’t miss the opportunity to have your company on that list. It’s a wonderful way to not only celebrate the international impact of the direct selling channel, it’s also a great chance to highlight your company’s biggest accomplishments of the past year with colleagues from across the country and around the world.
Finally, December represents a more personal celebration for me as I take over the reins of Direct Selling News from my good friend Lauren Lawley Head, who moves on to a new position as Senior Vice President of SUCCESS. Believe me, I know I have some very large shoes to fill—a couple of pairs, in fact, considering that John Fleming, who helped make the magazine what it is today, is still very much a part of the operation as DSN Ambassador. I feel lucky indeed to be following them both in this job, to be benefiting from their continued good will and guidance and to be working with such a great, hard-working staff here at
Likewise, I also feel very lucky to be part of the world of direct selling. I’ve been told many times that this is a business built on relationships. I look forward to forging strong relationships with each one of you in the coming weeks, months and years.
Many thanks and happy holidays,
Publisher and Editor-in-Chief