I hear this kind of question almost every week: “What were you doing in Clovis, California last week?” Sometimes a friend will ask, “How did you end up having a Juice Plus+ business in Texas—or Florida or Pennsylvania?” I usually respond with, “Do you want the short or the long version?”
Let me give Clovis a try. While Sally and I were visiting our grandchildren recently in Tiburon, California, I made the 4-hour drive to the middle of the state to work for two days with National Marketing Director, Judy Strickler and her Juice Plus+ team.
So how did my business in Music City take me to the middle of the San Joaquin Valley and Clovis, California?
In the early 1990’s, I was launching my business in Nashville and living on a shoestring. I lived for two years in a friend of a friend’s empty house, since I couldn’t afford rent for an apartment.
Don’t feel sorry for me. It gets better.
One Saturday afternoon when leaving a restaurant in Nashville, I spotted a married couple I had not seen for several years. The three of us struck up a conversation, and within a few minutes I had arranged an appointment with the husband on Monday morning. I wanted to tell him about my new business with NSA.
Jeff had been extremely cordial in our first conversation, but sitting behind his desk that early Monday morning, he became cool and detached. He wasn’t interested at all.
But as I stood up to leave, he mentioned the name of a man he knew was struggling in the real estate market, someone who might be open to creating another income stream. At my suggestion, Jeff called the man while I waited—and another appointment was on my calendar.
This second man listened politely and made it clear that that kind of business was just not for him. But then, he suggested that my business might be a fit for his wife. Two days later, she joined my team and started introducing me to her friends and acquaintances.
Fast-forward two decades. I’m with a dozen people sitting around a cozy kitchen table in Clovis, California, drinking Juice Plus+ Complete, sharing my story and explaining how our business works.
But, wait. I failed to mention how this lady in Nashville—the wife of the broke real estate agent—was able to recruit the husband of her lifelong Nashville friend. Then, he eventually sponsored his cousin in Plano, Texas, who happened to be living next door to an aerobics instructor and the mother of three boys—Terri Luongo.
On her journey to National Marketing Director and the 100 Club, Terri connected deeply with some open and responsive people. One of them put a cassette tape by Dr. Mitra Ray in the hand of a school nurse living at the time in Lubbock, Texas. Her name was Judy Strickler.
That’s how I connect the dots and try to make sense of this unique business that Jay Martin gifted to me and my family over 25 years ago. My children and my friends who are not connected to the business usually just look at me like I’m making up this story. They smile, scratch their heads and mumble something under their breath. They just don’t get it.
People who’ve been around just a few years know full well that I’m not making up any of this. National Marketing Directors I know can tell crazier, wilder and more incredible tales that are completely true, but in some ways, hard to believe.
Our Juice Plus+ business at the core is about connecting with people in a way that allows them to feel safe enough to open their lives and introduce their friends to us. If we do that kind of work every day, our teams become an ever-expanding family of caring people who tell their friends who tell their acquaintances about this life-changing concept of whole-food based nutrition, and a brand of business that is restoring hope for thousands of people across America and around the world—even in Clovis, California.
And, for those of you who are just getting started, remember that Juice Plus+ is here to stay. So keep connecting to the people you know, and then to the people they know. Don’t let up and never give up.
Some day you are likely to find yourself in a town you had never heard of before, hanging out with some of the dearest and best friends you would have never known apart from all of your Juice Plus+ connections. And, don’t worry about explaining to others how you ended up there. They won’t get it either.