In this month’s Executive Connection, Direct Selling News Publisher and Editor in Chief John Fleming speaks with Jamie Stewart, Managing Director of Kleeneze, about leadership, envisioning a billion dollar company and embracing technology.
DSN: What is the one thing you enjoy most about being the Managing Director of Kleeneze?
JS: The variety. It’s not just a job of running the business office. It’s changing people’s lives with the business.
DSN: Will you briefly tell us about your proudest accomplishment?
JS: Relocating the office without any significant interruption to business. We moved it 180 miles. Only seven people relocated out of 400. Within seven months we had restaffed.
DSN: What do you tell Kleeneze distributors to lead and inspire them?
JS: We’re quite good with our incentives program—cars or cash or trips. That inspires people and encourages them to build their business and keep it going. With a small group, my passion for the business inspires them. They see and feel my enthusiasm. Most recently, sharing my big picture vision is inspiring a lot of people. They’ll be part of something really big in 10 years.
DSN: What is your vision for Kleeneze?
JS: To be a billion dollar company.
DSN: Is there one basic principle which has governed your leadership at Kleeneze?
JS: I have always been honest with our distributors. That didn’t always happen prior to my time. I’ve engaged with them, as well. Now we ask the leadership about changes. I have a lot of conversations to ask what an impact will be.
DSN: What do you see as the direct selling industry’s greatest challenge?
JS: Embracing the technology change that is going on now and getting our business to support the next generation. We’re coming from behind right now.
DSN: Which other direct selling company or person do you admire the most and why?
JS: ViSalus. They have a simple business model: In their path, they move from customer to preferred customer to distributor. I also admire Darren Hardy.
DSN: What’s the best advice you ever got?
JS: Listen to my distributors and engage with them.
DSN: What’s something that few people know about you?
JS: The hardest part of my job has been getting comfortable with public speaking. It’s been the biggest challenge for me.
DSN: What do you like to do when you just want to relax?
JS: Spending time at home with my family. I wouldn’t be where I am now without my wife’s support. I enjoy what I do, but it’s so I can be home with my family.