April 01, 2016
The Best Places to Work in Direct Selling 2016 Honorees!
by Andrea Tortora
Table of Contents
- Story of the 2016 Best Places to Work and FAQ
- Nu Skin
- Team National
At Jeunesse, everyone has a chance to grow.
DeAndre Brown left a job at Subway to join the Altamonte Springs, Florida-based maker and distributor of youth enhancement products such as skincare and supplements. That was eight years ago, just as Randy Ray and Wendy Lewis were launching the business. Brown started on day one with about 20 others.
“It is remarkable how the company has grown and how I have grown,” says Brown, a VIP customer service specialist for some of Jeunesse’s largest sales leaders. Now 30, Brown was 22 when he began working in the shipping department. He thought that was where he wanted to be. Then he started talking with Ray and Lewis and company directors.
“I am very people oriented and they told me they were opening a new department and I took the plunge,” Brown says. “My vocabulary and speech, networking and ability to speak with others have improved dramatically.”
Brown’s personal transformation at Jeunesse is not unique. Many of his colleagues share similar stories. What makes it all possible are the guiding principles that direct the everyday actions at Jeunesse, where everyone abides by the motto: One team. One family. One Jeunesse.
It starts with having a servant’s heart, says David Matichak, Director of International Logistics. “We are here to serve our leaders, distributors, consumers and fellow employees,” Matichak says. “We treat each other with mutual respect and work together to achieve goals.”
A high priority is placed on teamwork and collaboration, honesty and integrity, being results oriented, learning and sharing as well as kindness and listening. Not to mention empowerment.
Alison Blackwell, Director of Operations, started out as Chief Visionary Officer Scott Lewis’ administrative assistant. Scott Lewis treated Blackwell as part of the team and took her opinions and ideas into consideration.
“I naturally began to take on extra responsibilities within my role and that led to my promotions over the years,” Blackwell says. “I got to grow at my own pace, and that is what I really like about this company.” Now Blackwell is growing her own department and her own people.
This culture of empowerment allows Jeunesse to retain top employees. Directors do not micromanage, Matichak says. Instead they encourage employees to make decisions and move forward. And if that means walking into the CEO’s office to ask advice, then so be it.
“It is like one big family,” Brown says. “We all trust each other to do our jobs. We are all working together. We can just go in with the owners and directors and joke around about sports or talk about work. It’s just normal.”
The Jeunesse guiding principles make it clear that “we are all on the same side with the same goal,” Blackwell says.
“It’s a team environment. A place where employees of all levels are encouraged to voice their opinions and know they will be heard,” Blackwell says. “This strengthens us.”
Wendy Lewis, Co-Founder and COO, says creating a friendly and open environment lets employees feel comfortable and “know their thoughts are heard and contribute to the success of our organization. This helps build strong teams and fosters a sense of trust and belonging.”
To reward employees for their dedication and hard work, Jeunesse provides generous benefits, including flexible hours, fully paid health insurance, fully paid life insurance, a matching 401(k) plan, and an on-site gym and personal trainer. The newest benefit is unlimited paid time off. The idea behind this policy is that employees should not have to keep track of their earned hours, Matichak says. As long as a supervisor approves, “if they need the time they should take it.”
The liberal PTO speaks to Jeunesse’s honesty and integrity. Scott Lewis often says, “We lead with our heart while trusting our intuition, because it is the right thing to do. We have always been a principles-based company.”
Blackwell says the unlimited PTO policy should help to encourage employees to take a break when they need it—and it provides managers a way to give people time off as a reward. “My team is so dedicated and they always have their nose to the grindstone,” Blackwell says. “Taking away the restrictions on PTO will make them feel more free and at ease to take time off.”
For some, the job is so fulfilling and engaging, it’s hard to step away. Take Brown. He can’t help but smile when he talks about Jeunesse and how working for the company has impacted his life. “I have traveled around the world to more places than I can count: Dubai, Thailand, Canada, Paris, Brazil, this year Rome. The benefits, the rewards, they open up so many things for people in every department. Who wouldn’t want to work here?”