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This post is a little late as I celebrated the first birthday of KMC Forever on the 5th September and I am so busy with the business and spending time with my daughter before she flies out to Sevastopol in Ukraine that I did not have a post ready for the day.

So what has my first year been like?

It has been a roller coaster of highs and lows as it is with every new business, but when you make such major changes in your life as I have done that is only to be expected.

At the time that I was first inspired by Forever Living and wanted to become a part of it I was working as an Assistant Director in Dudley Council responsible for the libraries, archives and adult learning services in the borough. I was passionate about the services and liked working for my boss Andrea and with my team, especially Jayne, Jen, Ros and Viv. However the job was not suiting me as my health was not good and I had developed Microscopic Colitis during 2012. I knew that if I wanted to ensure that I had a good quality of life and a better work/life balance I would have to do something about what I was doing. I was looking around and developing ideas, but until in August 2012 I went to my first Forever Living Business Presentation in Milton Keynes with my sister, and now sponsor, Alison Mead I didn’t know what I wanted to do.

I was absolutely blown away by Forever Living and the ethical way the company is run. The founder Rex is really generous creating a range of incentives for distributors. The company has Investors In People Gold award in the UK. This is an award given for excellent support and training for people working with or in an organisation. When I worked for the Council I didn’t even know there was more than one level, and we struggled to get the basic level. I already knew I loved the products as I had been buying them from my sister. They had helped me improve my hair, nails and skin; recover more quickly when I had problems linked to my coeliac disease or microscopic colitis and helped me to better maintain my internal health.

I went straight into work and applied for redundancy as part of the budget saving process the council was going through.

What happened next?

I paid my £199. 75 for my business in a box starter pack which meant I joined the business at Assistant Supervisor level with a 35% return on any products I sold. I started reading up on the products, attending trainings, the Success Express and replacing all items in my house where Forever did an equivalent including:

  • Toothpaste
  • Avocado Soap
  • Shower gel
  • Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Hand and face soap
  • Multi purpose detergent – washing up liquid, clothes washing and cleaning the house
  • Antiperspirant
  • Cleanser
  • Propolis creme as a hand cream and for cuts
  • Aloe Lips and Aloe Gelly for cuts, grazes and burns
  • Sonya Serum as a moisturiser and a base for my makeup
  • MSM cream to help my broken wrist to heal and to ease the aching in it.

I started to sell the products to friends and colleagues during the long 6 month wait until I finally left Dudley. I quickly got to the basic level of retailing/ using a minimum £800 worth of products (at retail value) and have done this every month since.

What I didn’t manage to do until July was the other element of developing my business which is recruiting team members and helping them to develop their own small businesses. For me I found that my health was not good enough to take that final step. I have now got my first 2 team members though a great way to celebrate my first birthday and my business is beginning to take off.

And what about my health?

I have never felt better. Kate Before and After Nutri LeanThis photo is before and after shots showing how well I look now after losing 2.5 stone (15.8 kg) slowly and healthily since Christmas using the Clean 9 and Nutri-lean programmes. I am exercising regularly and eating more balanced and healthy meals as a result of the improved habits developed through following the programme.

I am really excited about my future and looking forward to developing my KMCForever business helping others to improve their health and incomes too. Roll on my 2nd business birthday.

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I am starting a new role on the 1st August with a secondment for up to 2 years to the role of Black Country Library Services Project Manager.  I am still acting as an Assistant Director managing the Libraries, Archives and Adult Learning division for Dudley while working out what the future for all of these services will be. It will be an interesting challenge.

One of the first tasks that I will need to do in developing the Black Country Libraries project is getting a single, joint vision which is ‘owned’ by all four authorities. This leads me to wonder what it is about a vision that makes it successful and what is the difference between a vision and a mission.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines them as:

Vision: 1. the ability to see the area that you can see from a particular position; 2. an idea or a picture in your imagination; 3. dream or similar experience, especially of a religious kind; 4. a person of great beauty or who shows the quality mentioned; or 6. the picture on a television or cinema/movie theater screen.

Mission: 1. an important official job that a person or group of people is given to do, especially when they are sent to another country; 2. a group of people doing such a job; the place where they work; 3.the work of teaching people about Christianity, especially in a foreign country; a group of people doing such work; 4. a building or group of buildings used by a Christian mission; 5. particular work that you feel it is your duty to do; 6. an important job that is done by a soldier, group of soldiers, etc; 7. a flight into space; or 8. a task or journey that is very difficult and takes a long time to complete.

Looking at these I think I am will be working to develop a vision within definitions 1 and 2, although developing one can often feel more like 3 although not always religious!

For the mission – the key definitions for what I am trying to achieve are basically 1 and 5 and I need to work against it feeling like 8.

Any thoughts from others would be gratefully received.

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