Heather Tarrant – Norwex
We interviewed Heather who is an Independent Consultant for international direct sales company Norwex.
If you could first of all introduce yourself…
Hi my name is Heather, I am married to Justin and we have two beautiful children George who is nearly 9 and Scarlett who is 6. I have a background in Hotel Management and more recently in Training and Development at a local visitor attraction. After having children I changed direction slightly and decided to become self-employed to enable me to have more time with my children because of the flexible working hours. This is when I started my own Training business (primarily running First Aid courses for workplaces, groups and individuals) and also ventured into the world of Direct Sales.
What is the Direct Selling Company you represent? Please could you tell us a little bit about their history.
I am an Independent Norwex Sales Consultant. Norwex started in 1994 and is committed to radically reducing chemicals in our homes to promote the health of your family and of the environment. More than ever we feel the need to emphasise the positive environmental impact of reducing chemical use throughout the home and creating safe havens around the globe. Norwex is now represented in Canada, USA, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Australia, Germany, New Zealand, Ireland and it is currently launching in the UK.
How did you come to join your company?
I was looking for a change and wanted something new to run alongside my training business. Norwex is just launching in the UK and the products appealed to me as both my daughter and I have Eczema and other allergies. I thought using fewer chemicals in the home could help us both. The Norwex Core Values are Integrity, Trust and Respect, which was also very appealing to be associated with a company with such strong values.
Why did you feel that Direct Selling was the best option for you?
With two young children I wanted more flexibility and the fact that I could work when I wanted to by setting my own working hours was very appealing. I manage to spend more time with my children at home as well as attending school sports days, presentations, productions and more whilst being my own boss. I also like the fact that there are incentives to work towards if you choose to rather than targets that you have to achieve. It is completely flexible and you are in control.
Did you have any previous experience of direct selling or running a business?
I was with another Direct Sales company for 5 years but before that, no I didn’t have any experience.
Tell me a bit more about the products you offer
Over the last two decades, millions of customers have embraced cleaning with only Norwex Microfibre and water. It saves money, saves time and reduces harmful chemicals in the home. We’re now creating healthier, safer heavens that are more sustainable than ever. Norwex Microfibre has the ability to remove up to 99% of bacteria from a surface when following the proper care and use instructions.
I particularly love our EnviroClothTM which is made of superior quality microfibre containing BaclockTM an antibacterial agent for self-cleaning purposes which is designed to inhibit bacterial odour, mould and mildew growth within the product. The Window Cloth which gets windows, mirrors and other shiny surfaces sparkling clean with only water, our Dusting Mitt because it makes the job of dusting so much easier and I must confess dusting is a task I’m not keen on, and our Makeup Removal Cloths which are just brilliant at removing makeup with just water. Something I really couldn’t be without now is our Cleaning Paste – it works with a damp EnviroClothTM to clean, polish and protect chrome, stainless steel, porcelain, tiles and similar surfaces in one application.
How many people do you have in your downline and how do you manage your team?
I have only recently started with Norwex so I am in the process of building a team. However in my previous Direct Sales role, I did have a team and enjoyed supporting, mentoring and empowering them to achieve their own goals from their businesses.
How do you find new people to join your team?
All over the place! Norwex can appeal to anyone, as it is so flexible and the products are amazing; whether you want to be part time, full time or big time, there is an opportunity for everyone.
Do you have a preferred way to retail? What is most profitable for you?
You can buy directly from Independent Norwex Sales Consultants, however our preferred way of retailing is at a Norwex Healthy Home party. The host gathers a group of her friends and family together and a Consultant will demonstrate the products in the comfort of your home. Everyone at the party gets to see the products in action and have fun with friends and family at the same time.
What about support for you? Such as company training and upline support.
We have a UK-based Consultant support team that are available for everyday questions and queries. We have access to resources online for training and support purposes, and we can attend Roadshows and other events with our Head Office team. Your team leader will be available with help, advice and encouragement and will run Team Meetings for local Consultants.
What would you say has been the biggest challenge you have faced?
I haven’t really had any challenges with Norwex yet. Maybe convincing my husband that cleaning and household products can be cool! He is loving the Norwex products he has used and bizarrely enjoyed helping descale the shower walls in our bathroom!
What have been the best and worst things that have happened since you’ve been in business?
Cheesy I know, but it is the intangible things that are the best. I have made some amazing friends since starting in Direct Sales – something to treasure. It’s the feeling of self-worth, something that can be challenged when you are a mum as you can lose your personal identity. Being able to use the managerial skills I developed in previous employed roles in my direct sales business. It was also lovely to be recognised for personal achievements, something that most Direct Sales businesses are very good at doing.
As for worst things ……….. it’s all been pretty good to be honest. The worst thing was probably narrowly missing out on an incentive trip that I really wanted to earn.
How do you fit in running your business with your family? Childcare arrangements etc.
My husband has a fairly long commute to work but also works from home part of the week so we plan our diaries together and share an online diary to make life easier. I try to book as many Norwex Healthy Home Parties during the day when the children are at school and ensure my husband is home on evenings that I work. If not, I am lucky that both sets of Grandparents are local and happy to lend a hand when needed.
What 3 words would you use to describe your ‘business self’?
Honest, Professional and Self-motivated.
What advice would you give to anyone wanting to get into direct selling?
Just go for it! You have nothing to loose and everything to gain! You never know where it may take you by using skills gained in previous roles. I started in Direct Sales over 5 years ago thinking it would be possible to earn a little bit of extra money. I achieved far more including a good income, a strong business, foreign travel and I made some amazing friends.
Who do you look up to business wise? Do you have a business idol/mentor?
I know it’s a little clichéd but I think Richard Branson is fab! He had an idea and the courage to just go for it – he had to make a few tweaks along the way but look where he is today.
Karren Brady for her ability to walk into an incredibly male-dominated environment and demonstrate how strong, empowered and intelligent women can be.
If you could go back in time, would you change anything?
I’m pretty happy with what I’ve achieved in my work life as I have learned many lessons along the way, and these experiences have shaped the person I am today.
How much is it to join your company and what do people have to do if they want to find out more?
Joining Norwex is easy and free! You can sign up from my website (detailed below), and there is no up-front cost however you agree to do £1,200 commissionable sales in your first 3 months. If you don’t manage that, you are charged £150 for the kit, which includes over £200 worth of products which you can keep.
And finally where can we find you?