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July 01, 2008

Exclusive Interviews

Executive Connection with Roget Uys, President, CEO, GNLD

In this month’s Executive Connection, Direct Selling News Publisher and Editor in Chief John Fleming spoke to Roget Uys, President and CEO, GNLD, about the company’s distributors, vision for the future and much more.

JF: What is the one thing you enjoy most about being top executive of GNLD?

RU: The fact that I am in an incredible position; I travel the world and see how our opportunity changes lives all over the world.

JF: What has been your greatest challenge since assuming this position?

RU: Orchestrating the GNLD machine to stay true to the things that have made us great—what has gotten us this far and can get us into the future.

JF: How would you describe the ideal GNLD distributor?

RU: Anybody who has a desire to achieve their full potential as it relates to financial, personal and social well-being as well as their family’s well-being. Sometimes money isn’t that important. If you achieve the other things, the money is a byproduct of sharing with others.

JF: How involved are you with GNLD’s distributors?

RU: Totally. They need to guide us into the future, and we need to respond to their needs because we will not be successful without them. We need to talk to them as often as we can, build strong relationships, and work together as a team to achieve our success as partners.

JF: What is your vision for GNLD?

RU: My vision is that we will attract more than a million people into GNLD, people whose lives we can make a positive difference in. That vision is encompassed in our mission, which says that GNLD is global family making a positive difference in the lives of people who seek optimal health and financial well-being.

JF: Is there one basic principle which has governed your leadership at GNLD?

RU: No matter what you have in terms of products, plans or company financial resources, if you don’t have the right people and the right relationships with those people, nothing will work.

JF: How do you communicate with your team?

RU: Personal communication is best. Get on the phone and talk to people as often as you can, or see them face to face. Put your arm around them and genuinely care for those you meet as part of the business. It’s easy to get lost in email.

JF: Leaders usually draw on something or someone for inspiration, guidance and direction.  Do you have a hero or heroine?

RU: It has to be Jerry Brassfield, our founder, who had GNLD’s original vision, foresight and family values at the outset of the company. Following in his footsteps and continuing his dream and vision have, without a doubt, played a significant role in my life in the company.

JF: Which other direct selling company or person do you admire the most and why?

RU: The original entrepreneurs who made this industry what it is today. Jay Van Andel of Amway, Mark Hughes of Herbalife, the people who made Avon and Mary Kay great—there are so many of them. Jerry Brassfield is one of them. Those are the people who made what we have today. We’re benefitting from their guts and determination and entrepreneurial spirit. They overcame challenges to create this industry.

JF: What do you see as our industry’s greatest challenge?

RU: Not to chase after short-term success, regardless of the implications for what we do. That means that we don’t put products out there that we can’t support and that we don’t make unsubstantiated claims. We must never be dishonest to create success for the sake of success alone.

JF: What is your favorite way to relax?

RU: Physical activity. I love mountain biking, getting into the outdoors—combining the outdoors with physical activity. I used to do a lot of running and paddling.

JF: What is your favorite travel destination and why?

RU: Home. I travel all over the world all the time; I just love going home. At home, I have my wife, my family, home cooking as opposed to hotel food and a nice, soft bed instead of an airplane seat.