Part 1 – The Heroes of Life Leadership
I love hearing true stories of modern day heroes! At the national level, each of our countries are full of brave men and women in our armed services that have showcased honor, bravery and sacrifice. Again, right in our own communities, there exist countless stories of heroes – from law enforcement to firefighters to nurses and teachers – all performing brave acts and making the world around them better. When it comes to the world of business, there are also heroes out there making real sacrifices in order to help make the world around them a better place.
When I read about the story of this group of business partners that make up Life Leadership, I not only see another modern day hero, but a large group of heroes. After the fury of a great battle passes, the strong gather to tell the stories to the next generation of leaders. Life Leadership has an amazing story so far – full of drama, heartbreak and victory – and this is their story. The journey that these men and women have survived so far has forged an amazing team of core leaders that deserve credit for their bravery, their character and their sacrifice. If you are new to Life Leadership or are doing your research (like any good skeptic should) on these folks, you are in for a treat! They are the ‘real deal’!
The heroes of this story are not only the ones named in the headlines, but also thousands un-named. If you spend any length of time around the seminars and conventions of Life Leadership, you can hear many un-written heroic acts of this brave group of men and women.
That being said, Orrin & Laurie Woodward (and their family) certainly deserve the highest honors in this story, due to their enormous sacrifices when it mattered most to their teammates (financially stunning, emotionally taxing, spiritually testing, and having to endure more back-stabbing from so called “friends” than I care to write about).
If you are looking to join a company and group of leaders who have proven themselves worthy of following, look no further. They know how to dream big. They know how to work hard. They know how to put people first. They know how to learn from history. They know that they must constantly grow personally and professionally. They never run from a fight, when it is noble and right. They seek God’s will and direction for every decision they make. They have a goal to make a difference in over 1 million lives worldwide.
So here is the synopsis so far from Orrin Woodward himself. I will interject my own highlights from time to time. Enjoy the article!
What was the 2007-2010 legal dispute between some of the LIFE leaders, Quixtar and Mona Vie about?
I get asked this question periodically even though the dispute ended in 2010. Still, I believe the highlights from the issue can help a person understand the principles LIFE Leadership is founded upon. Before discussing the details, however, I think it’s important to share that I have no hard feelings for anyone who worked with Quixtar or currently works with Amway. As a matter of fact, I still have friends that work within the company. I believe life is too short to carry grudges and what is past is past. Further, I have heard from several sources that Amway has softened its litigation policy against leaders who want to leave the company. For this, I am thankful. Finally, I learned a ton during my time with Quixtar and have many memorable experiences. In consequence, I have taken the good, flushed the bad, and move ahead with no animosity.
Before LIFE Leadership was launched, Laurie and I, along with some of the other top leaders, worked with a company called Quixtar to build our community (business asset). Quixtar was a North American Internet based multi-level business started by the owners of Amway, but set up as a separate company from it’s parent. This was an important feature to me because I had joined Amway in 1993 when I learned they were developing an Interactive Distribution model to combine high-tech and high-touch. Regretfully, however, by 1998, I realized this was more hype than substance and had not come to fruition. Since I had no interest in building a traditional Amway business, we planned on starting a new venture.
Nevertheless, after hearing Ken McDonald (Quixtar’s first managing-director) share his vision for a new online model, we changed our minds. Since it was a separate from Amway (but backed by the founders funds) and would leverage the fast-growing Internet, we were intrigued. As a result, in 1999, we chose not renew our Amway distributorship and joined Quixtar instead as an IBO (Independent Business Owner).
The online model fit our young and hungry team perfectly. In fact, from 1999 through 2007, Laurie and I led the fastest growing organization within the whole company. We grew from several hundred to over ten thousand people attending events and our sales increased from a couple hundred thousand dollars to over one hundred million dollars! In addition, many other teams sought our training and started growing resulting in nearly another hundred million dollars in volume. Our training organization, in other words, was responsible for nearly $200 million of Quixtar’s total sales.
HIGHLIGHT: IN 8 YEARS, THEIR APPROACH TO BUILDING COMMUNITIES CREATED A TWO-HUNDRED-MILLION-DOLLAR PER YEAR ASSET!!
Unfortunately, the rest of Quixtar was not doing well, mainly because the older, more mature organizations seemed unable to adjust to building an online business. I saw the loss of confidence and numbers firsthand because I was asked to speak (hundreds of times) to Quixtar groups across North America. Dismally, instead of growing into the 100 billion dollar company predicted by Ken McDonald and other top leaders, Quixtar leveled off around a billion dollars even with our team’s meteoric growth. In fact, many of the top leaders lost half their numbers or more as they struggled to marry high-touch communities with the high-tech online environment. Nonetheless, I didn’t realize the precarious nature of the Quixtar business until Ken McDonald abruptly announced his retirement in 2005 despite flying to see me just weeks earlier to discuss future strategies. To say I was disappointed would be an understatement (Ken and I worked well together), but I also respected Quixtar’s right to choose its leadership team.
Curiously, however, Quixtar’s new managing-director was also an Amway vice-president. Although I thought this was strange, I was assured on numerous occasions that the two were still separate corporations and the change in management was merely to help Quixtar increase its sales. As a result, the 2007 announcement that Quixtar was closing its doors and that all its Independent Business Owners (IBOs) would be transitioned into Amway shocked me. This was unacceptable for several reasons. For one thing, I was not in Amway (having purposefully not renewed when Quixtar launched), nor did I want to be in Amway. For another, I had told tens of thousands of people that they were independent business owners affiliated with Quixtar just as the IBO moniker implied. True, Quixtar was owned by the founders of Amway, but they were allegedly separate companies with separate field organizations. Indeed, I must have repeated this message of separate companies a thousand times because that is what Ken McDonald and the rest of the Quixtar’s management team had told all of us. In sum, I had been misled, and thus had inadvertently misled others.
For me, the whole conflict was a moral issue. On one hand, I knew Quixtar (like any company) had the power to break its commitments to its customers, but it didn’t have the power to avoid the subsequent fallout. On the other hand, how could I represent a company to others that I believed had misrepresented itself to me? Indeed, leadership is character in motion and without trust, it’s impossible for any leader to get in motion. Nevertheless, quitting my independent business was not as simple as it sounded since Amway had stated its intention to litigate against any leader attempting to leave the Amway/Quixtar (indeed, hundreds were sued before and after me). Not surprisingly, the legal risk intimidated many other leaders into submission, but it only emboldened our leadership team. For if we stayed with Amway because we feared litigation, then we would be imprisoned into Amway’s Legal Matrix and not truly independent anyway. How, in a word, could we ever recommend others to join us as independent business owners when we knew in our hearts that this was no longer true?
HIGHLIGHT: ORRIN AND HIS BAND OF MIGHTY MEN HAD THE CHARACTER AND COURAGE TO FACE THE PROBLEMS HEAD ON AND DO THE RIGHT THING REGARDLESS OF THE COST. IT IS ALSO IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT ORRIN HAD TO HAVE BEEN VERY FISCALLY CONSERVATIVE FOR YEARS, SO THAT WHEN THE “RAINS CAME”, HE COULD HELP HIS TEAM WEATHER THE STORMS.
Although the easiest thing to do would have been to rejoin Amway, announce my retirement, and slowly watch my groups dissolve, this was morally unconscionable. I also doubted Amway’s antiquated business model could work in the internet savvy North American market regardless of how many millions Amway spent on television advertisements (Amway no longer discloses North American sales volume but it is rumored to have dropped precipitously). How could Laurie and I in good conscience give up our purpose and principles for profit while our community suffered? And yet, I also knew that I would be sued by Amway (a multi-billion dollar international company) if I didn’t agree to their plan. Financially, this was a lose-lose scenario. Neither option, in other words, was without massive risk and challenges, but leaders are paid to make decisions and it was time to make a decision.
Thankfully, I had great leaders like Chris Brady, Tim Marks, Claude Hamilton, George Guzzardo and Bill Lewis (interestingly, I barely knew my good friend and LIFE co-Founder Dan Hawkins at the time), who all believed we should choose character over convenience. Accordingly, I called a meeting to announce my immediate resignation and intention to sit out Quixtar’s six month non-compete period. My plan was to form a new company and build our businesses entirely separate from either Quixtar or Amway. Disastrously, however, instead of accepting my resignation, Amway announced it was “firing” me (how a company can fire an independent business owner is still inexplicable to me). They proceeded to call each of the leaders in our community to demand they choose either Quixtar (soon to be Amway) or staying with me. Of course, the field leaders had no idea what Quixtar was talking about since I had not announced to anyone (except a handful of my top leaders) any plans to start another business.
HIGHLIGHT: JUST LIKE THE BIBLICAL ACCOUNT OF DAVID AND HIS MIGHTY MEN, SO TO DID ORRIN HAVE A GROUP OF MIGHTY MEN SURROUNDING HIM THAT NOT ONLY PROVIDED SUPPORT, BUT A GREAT REASON FOR ALL TO PERSEVERE – TO FIGHT FOR EACH OTHER.
Amway’s management team had no idea the hornet nests they had knocked over. People in our organization were already upset at the name change and now Amway/Quixtar compounded its errors through firing myself and Chris, manufacturing press releases, and issuing business ultimatums. Not surprisingly, Quixtar paid for its hubris. In our organization alone, over 50,000 IBOs resigned rather than switch to Amway. Of course, Amway (true to their promise) initiated multi-million dollar court and arbitration proceedings against me and others. The financial stakes were high since we had already lost our business incomes and now risked bankruptcy. Evidently, the plan appeared to be to sue people into submission.
Consequently, starting our own company was out of the question. It would be foolhardy to attempt when a multi-billion dollar company was seeking to squash us. I didn’t feel that falling on my own sword and hurting the many people who followed me out of Quixtar was the proper plan. Rather, I needed a plan for survival until Amway realized we would not surrender our principles no matter what the consequences. Accordingly, I sought a join another company so I could earn money to help support our growing legal mess (tens of millions of dollars). Of course, I ensured, upfront, that once the legal battles were over, we would be free to start our own business if we still desired to.
Fortunately, I found Dallin Larsen, the 2009 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year and founder of Mona Vie. Mona Vie, in 2008, was one of the fastest growing companies in the network marketing. While he benefited from bringing in our large organization (millions of dollars per month in volume), he also had taken a huge risk. In truth, I do not see how we would have survived without working with Mona Vie. As expected, Amway subsequently sued Mona Vie (I commend their persistence) and countless more millions were spent battling the behemoth. Fortunately, Dallin Larsen did not flinch and followed through on everything he committed to despite several years of legal harassment.
Finally, in 2010, a global settlement was reached. After much pain and pressure (the battle had left no one unscathed) the war was over. I believe Amway finally realized the IBOs who resigned were not coming back and we had enough funding to continue the legal battles indefinitely. As a result, the biggest leadership challenge we had ever faced was finally over. Our community was FREE! This was our team’s finest moment. I have never been prouder of any group of leaders for they had survived nearly three years (2007 through 2010) without surrendering. Some even choosing to declare bankruptcy rather than give in to Amway’s legal demands.
In closing, many times during the war I had told the leaders that those who stayed would be champions. It is inspiring to see how many achievers stayed with us to finish the million person mission. These men and women are the one’s who dreamed, the one’s who dared, and the one’s who sacrificed to make LIFE Leadership a reality. Although I have read thousands of books on businesses, I have never found a more inspiring example of a group of common people willing to face uncommon giants. Perhaps the best description of the LIFE Leadership pioneers is the plaque at the Overpass Museum in Carney, Nebraska, “The cowards never started. The weak died on the way. Only the strong survived.” If a person is ready to face his personal Goliath, I know of no stronger community to help him do so than LIFE Leadership.
In summary, the heroes in this story are too many to name. But I assure you they are at every monthly Life seminar across North America (and soon to be around the world) shaking hands, encouraging people and working hard to make a difference. So before you pass judgement on Life Leadership, go and meet them. And be prepared to be amazed…
Part 3: A funny video to help summarize the arguments in the Peters vs. Woodward et al. case
If you are new to this blog or doing further research on this case, you can find my previous blog details on the lawsuits involving Mark & Raquel Peters vs. Eric Blomdahl, Orrin Woodward, and other LIFE business leaders here:
Over time, the details of the conflict and disagreement between these two parties may get blurred. During the upcoming litigation, well-trained lawyers will do their best to argue each side. So to keep things simple, I would like to share a video that I came across today. It is SO FUNNY in the way that it parallels some of the victim attitudes that you will read about if you do any fact-finding at all. It is also a sad example of how people can hold onto this victim attitude to ruin their own happiness – and at the same time blaming someone else for their poor circumstances. Enjoy!
OK, now that you are up to speed from the previous post, lets walk through the complaints:
To keep this article as condensed as possible, you can read Eric Bolmdahl’s explaination on his blog. See the link here.
Now lets walk through some important parts of a letter that Mark & Raquel Peters posted in ink on the bathroom wall of the world (Internet/Social Media):
“The Team according to Forbes online are making millions. We have been promised a residual,pipeline,b type business income from Team in public and on cd’s and dvd’s for years by millionaire Team Policy council and we expect it.”
Really? I have listened to the same CDs and attended the same meetings, but don’t remember Orrin or any PC promising an income. Didn’t you study the compensation plan? It is based on volume produced by human beings, and if you can guarantee that they won’t die or stop producing volume, then I suppose you could guarantee an income! Cmon! I DO hear all of the disclaimers on every CD that they cannot guarantee results: “these techniques and approaches may work for you…”. I do believe that Orrin and the Policy Council DO to work very hard to create an environment for success.
“Our team and income has been stripped from us based on lies and slander as you will see in the enclosed letters.”
Wait a minute, something doesn’t add up. In the middle of that chaotic and confusing time, you were the only ones that didn’t get your issues resolved? Seems like your up-line would be better off (personally and financially) by working things out with you? There has to be a reason that everybody else’s issues got worked out and your’s did not? The facts don’t add up – you must have said or did something for this to be blown so out of proportion. Hmmm…
“We want our team Mr Guzzardo took and gave to Eric Blomdahl restored back to us and a public and written apology from all these people for all these vicious attacks on our character.”
Wait a minute, you want back into Team after all of the things you have said and done? So if everybody issues a public apology to you, are you ready to issue a public apology back to them for all of the things you have said and written (including this letter)?
“We have brought thousands of customers to purchase Team materials, who continue to purchase weekly.”
To say that thousands of people you brought in are still involved and purchasing today would, most likely, be an exaggeration.
“We have worked 5-6 nights a week for years promoting the Team. We want to see the Team books publicly opened showing why ours and others incomes have dropped so dramatically, how we have been paid past,present and future.”
Boo-hoo! A lot of people have sacrificed the same and much more. Why did incomes drop? Oh, I don’t know, maybe because of the multi-year, multi-million dollar, multi-state, multi-friggin’ messed up lawsuit that, from what I can tell, affected EVERYBODY? (Just a guess)
“We would like copies of any contracts we have signed for the Team.”
They have probably been destroyed since they are no longer valid for either party.
“We want past and projected future money owed and any due damages for pain and suffering and loss of income, false advertising etc because of the below reasons.”
Just like the rest of us, you received the money you earned. As for future money owed, asking for this is like getting in a fight at work, then quitting, then asking for money that you would have earned at that job had you never got into the fight to begin with.
“We also want others like us protected from future assaults and them to receive all the above as well. And there are a lot. We would like the truth to be exposed so no other person will be deceived and suffer like we have.
Team provides leadership and training materials including cd’s, books, dvd’s, websites, open meetings and seminars. We sell their training materials to a community of people that we bring to them. I started with the team and Amway in January 2003. We get paid by the Team on materials(called tools) and tickets sold, team profit sharing and speaking engagements.
For 6 years we have been promised a passive, residual, ongoing, pipeline, willable income from the Team. Team teaches us to build numbers in their training system, they have recognition based on these numbers at there seminars. I built a community of people for the team that continues to grow, working 5-6 days a week for years, promoting the team. We spoke at engagements,at the team’s request, across the country for years. I achieved the Round Table / Turbo 100 level in the Team and the Sapphire level in Quixtar/Amway in 2007. We were making enough money with the Team and Amway to give up my photography business and for my husband to give up his plant manager position and pursue the Team business full time.”
Nobody told you to quit your jobs. This was your choice and you need to be mature enough to understand the risks of taking those steps. I know that many people that achieved the same level you did, worked just as hard as you did, and left good jobs like you did, then had to humble themselves and go back to work. They admirably did what they had to do to support their families. I respect that tremendously! Did they have a pity party? I’m sure each one did. Did they blame, accuse, slander and smear online? No. Some quit. Some snapped out of the pity-party and went back to work to rebuild what was lost.
“Quixtar/Amway was not mentioned at any open meetings or seminars. Always it was implied the Team was the business that built communities and Amway was just the shopping portal we used. At one time all profit sharers were herded into a room at a Go-Diamond weekend and told we needed to sign a 25 page document to get paid from the Team. Raquel asked if she could take it home and mail they said no and when asked to get a copy was told no. I couldn’t get copies and was given 5 minutes to sign it, encircled by Team office workers. She trusted them and went against her uneasiness and signed it.”
This is a huge exaggeration! 5 minutes?! Haha! I was there. You had all afternoon and the workers were there to help and answer questions (which I had a lot of them). I read everything and the majority of it was about being honest, having character and not disparaging each other. This was not a complicated document full of lawyer-talk.
“It was implied we (the Team) would be the Walmart of the Internet.”
This is completely false! I was there at all of the meetings and listened to the same CDs. This is taken completely out of context and I can’t believe people are still whining about this. Is this the real reason you are upset??? Gimme a break, before Quixtar made all of their crazy changes, the product goal was to help make Quixtar the ‘Walmart of the Internet’ (NEVER to create our own). Do you know what a metaphor is? Team and Policy council were always about trying to make a difference with the stated goal of doing so in the lives of 1 million people.
“Our income was presently 8000 to 12000 a month from the Team and 2000-3000 a month, from Amway/Quixtar. In spring of 2007, at Go Diamond Weekend, all the silvers and above were shown a document, on overhead,on how the Team paid us based on numbers of people using Team information. It was very inticing. It was removed quickly when some people took pictures of it, angering some policy council members.”
Those numbers may have been a proposal. My guess is they didn’t want you to go around and guarantee numbers that were not approved by legal council. Again, you are twisting the truth here.
“A few months later in August , Mr. Woodward and other Team Leaders chose to leave Amway/Quixtar. We knew if we didn’t leave with the Team, our team would be gone. Also we were unhappy with the pricing of Quixtar so we trusted and followed,. We were told by the Guzzardo’s what date to resign from Quixtar and then told ” not all of us to do it on the same day.” We had a 6 month nocompete to fulfill. The Team told everyone to sell leadership materials during this time, as they continued with our seminars and tool sales. (our open meetings were shut down due to lawsuits) Our income dropped from 80,000 in 2007 to about $600 most months in 2008. My husband and I had no jobs and they knew it.”
Uh, so did everybody’s income! It’s a sad story, but not unique to you. This is what happens when you fight with a billion dollar company. If they didn’t fight, Quixtar was going to kill a big chuck of your product profits (with their sweeping BV reductions) and take away 100% of your Team income (with their ban on business support materials/systems). Think about it! I’m sorry that you didn’t learn a business mindset with your years on the team. I suppose you are lucky you made $600 most months. What the Woodward’s and the rest of the leaders were fighting for was YOUR chance to make that kind of money again!
“Also the Morgans income and others dropped like that as well.Again no explanation and no other contracts signed.”
Really?! At this time all of the top leaders were under judicial gag-orders! Of course nobody could explain anything to you. At your level, you were supposed to be a leader and do the best you could with what little knowledge that you had. Oh, and when your income dropped, you don’t whine about it, you suck it up and go back to work like a responsible adult.
“We have never seen how our pay is figured, except for seminar speaking where there was a flat fee based on our team levels.”
Isn’t it funny that when you were making $80,000 you never complain or inquire about how they pay you, it’s only when it drops that you make a fuss…It’s profit-sharing, not a job-type fixed income!
“While others in our group appeared to make much more and also were offered to speak at seminars to keep their income up we were going broke.”
You don’t know how much “others were making”. And people don’t get offers to speak because they need the money. The best business builders always did the speaking based on recent performance.
“The tools were sold and changed frequently over these 6 months making them useless and profit sharers were made financially responsible for refunds. Many people quit because of the expenses incurred and the Team never followed through on Walmart of Internet which was promoted cd’s and resold.”
“When they demanded in March/April that we register people in Mona Vie, most that we were working with were not legally free of there 6 month contract.”
Nobody demanded anything. You were given a choice just like the rest of us.
“We had been told from stage no one would be left behind. For years these people that we loved and cared about had bought team and quixtar products that all the “leaders” got paid on. We had the paperwork for our smaller leg and decided to put a few in at a time, as they got free, because it was the right thing to do. We wanted people to be put in the same order as they gotten started on the team. Because for years we told them to hold their spot.
We had @10 people free and hundred+ that were not. Mr Blomdahl recommended that we give away all our personals except three, to the Samuels.Our other team was already registered and we knew no one else had done that. Mona Vie’s pay plan was based on our personals. We decided to work with John Morgan who we trusted on our registration process.”
So if, for example, if you had 50 personals, you wanted to start 50 legs?? Uh, OK. But when people who don’t really understand MonaVie’s structure realize that their binary LOOKS like they have people in their group, but in reality, you actually would have stolen them to add to another “Leg” or PET (Personal Enrollment Tree) because you wanted to make more money. Again, this doesn’t make any sense. My guess is that your up-line was trying to help you keep your promise to the group. But because you were misunderstood and under stress (just like the rest of us) you lashed out instead of working things out? I don’t know…
“Because of all this, our credibility continued to be destroyed by Mr Blomdahl and Mr Guzzardo and the Samuels.”
Trying to defend themselves against YOUR social media attacks doesn’t sound like they were trying to go on the offensive and destroy your credibility…
“More people quit, stopped coming to seminars and meetings. They were angry that the integrity of the line of sposorship wasn’t kept and some about the phone calls they recieved from the Samuels. All this created doubt confusion and upheaval in our team.This destroyed the unity of our group. When we went to our seminars some wouldnt talk to us.When people asked us what happened we did not deny the truth. Also they werent happy about the broken promises made by the Team Leadership.”
Are we back to the ridiculous ‘Walmart of the Internet” thing again?! Sounds like we found the root of your bitterness!
“Mr. Guzzardo had a secret meeting with blomdahls, Samuels, klomsten and gina Schaefer to talk about how they couldn’t work with us! They began to put people in wrong places and cause more destruction at the instruction of Mr. Guzzardo.I knew this was wrong and spoke thru email to Mr Woodward, Guzzardo’s superior. Mr woodward agreed this was wrong.”
Did you call Mr. Guzzardo? Or are you just speculating, assuming and assigning false motives?
“In nov 2008 the Morgans were checking out another, noncompeting business to do along side their mv business for extra income and had sent an email to their family and a few best friends on the Team. They said hey check this out.”
This is crazy! If you build two businesses at the same time with the same people, you just create too much confusion!
“This other business was similar to the one Mr Guzzardo and Mr Woodward had promoted we would go to, all those months we were waiting and it never came.”
You’re kidding, right? Another ‘Walmart of the Internet’ comment?? You must have been one of the people that falsely promised this to your group and are embarrassed that your misunderstanding made you look like a liar (so you pass the blame upline)…
“Our names were not included in this email. Mr Guzzardo got ahold of email and went around and slandered the Morgans and their friends, systematically destroyed their teams that gain them income and destroyed the Morgans credibility to thousands. Secret Meetings were called in all our groups as well as Morgans teams by Mr Blomdahl and Guzzardo. The Blomdahl’s, Guzzardo’s and Samuels then slandered us to our groups, upline and downline. Mr Guzzardo told Jammie Fisher we were implicated and told Ben Prescher we had moved on and quit our business.The Morgans joined a coupon cutting business, according to Jammie Luerquin. Our team name was changed and we were out. We had not joined any business, had not quit, Raquel was in and out of the emergency room and hospital at this time. Were still buying their materials and attending their seminars and getting paid from the Team.”
Sounds like they were just trying to protect their group from getting into something that would eventually be proven to fail…
“Not Mr guzzardo, Blomdahl, Winklers, Samuels, Hawkins, woodwards, Oettinger, Team Office anyone who slandered us had called us or the Morgans before they pulled these stunts.At this time us and the Morgan’s decided to quit attending team functions as Raquel was very sick and we felt we could no longer associate with people like that. We kept buying their cd’s, and quit buying seminar tickets and waited to see if they would pay us our income we had earned. We have spent thousands of dollars on Team materials and events and thousands of hours of our personal time. We gave it all to serve the Team. We were crushed.”
This doesn’t add up. It sounds like you were the ones that were not communicating and getting increasingly bitter as time went on.
“We now have received this letter from the Samuels that is full of lies and 1/2 truths. The Samuels have only spoken to us face to face twice since spring 2008 and that was last summer 2008 and two weeks ago when Tim showed up at Raquels’ dad’s. He has never mentioned he had a problem or brought up the Team. Him and his wife made it very clear right from the start theydidnt want to work with Raquel and that they were working with Mr Blomdahl and didnt want the help which we have offered. It is normal for people to work with any upline they chose and it was always ok with us, like we have chosen to work with upline higher than Mr blomdahl , the Morgans. We believe that the Samuels have been put up to this letter to take away our income by Mr Guzzardo and Mr Blomdahl and the Team . Tim Samuels is my cousin and knows that we built most of his team for him and he inherited volume from all the hard work we did. Our team has been removed from our business management screen and given to Mr Blomdahl. Mr Blomdahl has noone personally sponsored in the Samuels organization that I’m aware of and He didn’t build our team, he did support it in a small way as is his job, and he already was getting paid for it.This appears to help Mr Blomdahl get a higher income.Because of this letter and action and Mr Guzzardo’s approval this has removed us from our profit sharing and took our future Team income away. Our total Team income was $80,000 in 2007 according to our 1099, $18,000 in 2008 and has been ave $600-800 a month this year and now is being taken away. The communities that we helped build, Including the Samuels and Hawkins groups have brought to the team approximately $70,000 in sales this month alone. These sales will continue as long as these teams continue to exist in the Team system.”
This is misleading, because it is impossible to know how much is left from what you previously helped build and how much you destroyed with your rants on social media. Also, if all the sales happen mostly in one leg, you don’t get compensated anything – all networking profits are based on volume growth in multiple organizations.
“We sent an email stating these were lies and were told it was up to Mr. Guzzardo in the letter from the office. We have asked for contracts from the Team office we have signed and have had no reply.
Our family is in financial ruin as well as many others, that are too afraid to speak out . We have so many bills we cant pay, my husband has had to go back towork and is making 1/2 of what he made at his plant manager position and our Mona vie income is dropping because of this too. We feel we were misled for years and left our children for the Team. Now we are destroyed financially, our credibility in our community is destroyed and Raquel’s health is destroyed as well.. In 2007 we were debt free outside of our mortgage, now we may possibly be forced to file bankruptcy and lose our home, due to unpaid taxes and bills as well as. We can no longer even afford every day bills much less the things we need to continue to build our business. We are humiliated. There has been a lot of pain and suffering for all of us.””
Mark and Raquel Peters
Again, this is a sad story, but we are all responsible for our choices of what we do with our money and time. To blame others 100% for our plights is childish. If you were successful before in corporate America and business, you can become successful again. There are many others that went through similar struggles with their Team business but responded differently. These people have learned a lot of great lessons from the struggle and are successfully rebuilding what they lost in 2007-2008.
Closing questions to think about:
Why did you take to social media to constantly slam people that you professed to care about (including family members), so much so that it took a judge to get you to stop??
I understand the need to be heard, but did you think that writing on the bathroom wall of the world with a permanent marker was going to solve your problems? (Oh, I get it, it was all about YOU and your need to vent. I bet that made you feel all better, huh?)
This all needs to stop. The lawsuits, the smearing on social networking, the fighting – everything. Raquel, you could put a stop to this all. This is out of check ego, selfishness and falsely assuming that you knew what other people were thinking. This all picked up speed when you started to look for somebody to comiserate with instead of solutions. This really exploded when you found other bitter supporters. The other problem with this whole mess is that you didn’t damage relationships with just a few, you chose to damage with thousands of people that once had a great deal of respect for you. The ending to this course of events will be the same bad feelings around and some very profitable lawyers.
Today on STRS (Set The Record Straight), I want to shed some light on a dispute that goes back 6 years now between Raquel Peters and Eric Blomdahl (and since then dragging George Guzzardo, Dan Hawkins and Orrin Woodward into the mud).
When I discovered that this argument was still going on and is now being battled out in court, I was stunned! Another misunderstanding that spiraled into bitterness and hurt ego that could have been easily resolved.
Before I STRS, let me summarize and get you up to speed: There is a lawsuit in Oneida Wisconsin court where Eric Blomdahl is suing Raquel Peters to get her to stop her damaging social media ‘hissy-fit’ about how her up-line did her wrong and stole part of her group back in 2008. Raquel Peters is suing Eric Blomdahl, Dan Hawkins, George Guzzardo, Orrin Woodward and Life Leadership for lost bonuses. You with me so far?
This is a really simple one to clear up, but we have to go back to the fall of 2007 to how the whole thing started:
- *Summer 2007, Quixtar mandates radical changes that will hurt distributors.
- *Orrin stands up for all distributors (not just his own organization) at a board meeting.
- *Quixtar threatens Orrin.
- *Orrin resigns from Quixtar.
- *May other top distributors (not just in Orrin’s network) resign.
- *People get a mass ultimatum letter from Quixtar with a deadline to pledge allegiance to them (in other words, choose your side).
- *Quixtar gets a judge to issue a gag order for Orrin.
- *People resign from Quixtar en mass.
- *Quixtar sues Orrin claiming that he violated a gag order and coerced people into leaving.
- *Everyone is banned from joining another business for 6 months (non-compete clause) from the date of resignation.
- *Quixtar extends gag-order to other top leaders. Orrin’s gag order is extended even longer than this 6 month period.
- *After 6 months, people find out that some of their leaders are joining MonaVie – which, at the time, very few people had a clue how MonaVie compensation plan works or how to properly structure it.
- *Leaders had no communication with Orrin or many of the top leaders from the past, so leaders that were past their 6 month window had to figure out how to properly register people for themselves, hoping that they could iron everything out over time.
- *NOTE: This was a time where I saw people exercise 3 choices: 1. Quietly quit by refusing to register in MonaVie; 2. Register, but then loudly quit by complaining, criticizing and condemning; 3. Register, then complain but work to get any and all issues worked out.
- *Thankfully, MonaVie allowed plenty of time after this for people to re-arrange their group and correct any errors based upon the consent of all parties. If there was any issue or disagreement whatsoever, THERE WAS PLENTY OF TIME TO FIX ANY AND ALL PROBLEMS.
- *Now, after all of this mess was sorted out, training materials and seminars were created to learn how to build a MonaVie team.
- *This is where “Team” comes in. It used to be that when you had a certain volume of training materials in your group (CDs, books and seminar tickets), you received a certain amount compensation.
- *Some people decided that they didn’t want to build MonaVie anymore. (OK, people are free to do whatever they want).
- *So some people either quit or left to join another business, but still wanted to get paid based on group volume that they left behind and quit on. (Yes, I was dumbfounded too!)
- *Some people even said bad things online and social media, but still wanted to get paid on group volume that they were trying to destroy via gossip and slander. (Can you imagine bad-mouthing your last job and still expecting them to send you a paycheck? HA!)
- *After the legal entanglements with Quixtar, Orrin and his core group of leaders were advised to create something new in the networking industry: A “board of directors” very similar to how a law office or large corporation works. This became the new way that compensation would be paid when it comes to profits on training materials. Smart idea! Companies have been successfully doing this for years!
- *There was a meeting to roll this out. Everybody knew about this. Everybody that ever qualified to receive compensation through Team was invited. There was even a provision to get those that could not make it up to speed. A new “Director” agreement had to be signed to receive compensation. A big part of this agreement was that you would behave with character and integrity and that you would not disparage your fellow “Directors”.
Stay tuned for the next article, where we will address the issues one paragraph at a time!