Having recently heard about Virginia Sole Smith’s article that appeared in Harpers Magazine, “The pink pyramid scheme: How Mary Kay cosmetics preys on desperate housewives” on Tom Ashbrook’s “On-Point” radio show “Investigating Mary Kay“, has brought up the question again, other than working for a multi-level marketing company or selling real estate, what can a woman do to make money on a schedule that permits flexibility? Perhaps allows them to work from home?
In North Carolina Moore County of approximately 87,000 there are 435 realtors registered with the Pinehurst Realty Association. That is one realtor for every 200 people. And there may be more! That seems like a lot even in a lovely retirement area like Pinehurst.
What type of flexible job is available? In a rural area? For someone perhaps with no college education? Perhaps a single mother? Perhaps with no access to the household finances? On-line jobs are growing.
The multi-level marketing companies have been found taking advantage of hard working women with few options. How many of us haven’t come face to face with the multi-level marketing world as consumers? Personally I have had my moments with Mary Kay, Avon, Arbonne and Southern Living products.
These ladies have figured out how to work from home. They have done the almost impossible. These business women have young children, many children, kids in college – generally a family oriented imperative are entrepreneurs. I have found their audience to be stay at home moms who don’t “need” to work. No doubt many are getting swept up in debt and piles of unsold merchandise, with mercenary managers just as Ms. Smith has detailed. Is this as good as it gets?
However it is an important question that needs asking. It makes me so hopeful that the media is looking closely, opening a window so we as a society can also look at the question that I and so many other women ask with gravity, often with desperation, “what am I going to do?”