Women Who Work: How USANA and Avon Empower Female Entrepreneurs

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Women hold as much as 80% of the buying power in most households—and they aren’t just shopping ‘til they drop. The modern woman is making informed decisions about where she spends her money. Whether she’s building a solo life or taking care of her family, she’s looking at reviews, researching, and making powerful purchases with every swipe of her card. She’s investing in things that matter and products that let her live the life she wants.

The direct selling industry and the Direct Selling Association (DSA)see women as educated consumers, influencers, and business owners. It’s an industry that thrives through its passionate, dedicated female entrepreneurs. And to pay it forward, many successful direct selling companies give something wonderful back to the women who help to build them.

Empowering Women with Wellness

USANA Health Sciences supports its female Associates and employees alike. Throughout its24 markets, 70% of Associates are women who not only build health and wellness businesses but healthy families and brighter futures. A close-knit community is created through female-curated events like the annual SWEET—Successful Women Empowering Entrepreneurs Together—Retreat. This exclusive event lets female Associates engage with women both inside and out of USANA. They encourage each other, share struggles, and celebrate their success, making lifelong friendships that continue through social media and leadership groups.

USANA encourages Associates to foster open discussions to elevate the voices, values, and vision of women, and it embraces this same space for female employees. Nearly 60% of USANA’s workforce identify as female, with 42% of those employees in leadership roles. Groups like USANA’s Women in Leadership offer trainings, mentorships, and both personal and professional growth opportunities. In 2021 USANA joined the Elevate HER™ Challenge, vowing with other organizations to help elevate women’s leadership. This Women’s Leadership Institute program was established to address the lack of women in corporate and political leadership in Utah. USANA also honors the corporate Parity Pledge® to interview and consider at least one qualified woman for every open executive role. It’s a diverse company that understands women can make a difference in the well-being of others and empowers them too boldly do so.

Redefining Beauty

Another quintessential direct selling company that empowers a workforce of women is Avon. In 1886 Mrs. P.F. E. Albee, the then California Perfume Company’s first female employee, created networks of female entrepreneurs to sell products—a time in history when only 20% of women had a job outside the home. Expanding its rich history of championing women who do good, Avon awarded a special Avon Medallion of Honor to nurses and service women in World War II. In 1975 the company created Avon Shades of Beauty, a line of cosmetics, hair, and skin care for women of color. Andrea Jung was named the company’s first female CEO in 1999, and in 2008 Avon partnered with the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) to promote women’s empowerment and end violence against women.

Through its Beauty in Giving Back campaign, Avon has enriched their partnership with Feed the Children. In 2020, they distributed 1,898,756 pounds of food, essentials, educational supplies, and books valued at over $61 million as a response to COVID-19. The Feed the Children x Avon Box is delivered to women and their families year-round, particularly in response to disasters.

Avon is also a proud partner of Gyrl Wonder, a professional initiative that lifts up ambitious women of color ages of 17–23. Through social impact and career development its mission is to give young women the tools to be leaders of tomorrow. Female empowerment is intrinsic to Avon’s history of success.

Elevating Female Entrepreneurs

Direct selling has long recognized the influence of women in the industry as far beyond hosting parties with girlfriends. And it all started with women taking charge of their unique drive. The DSA supports women in the industry through open conversations about what they want, need, and envision for their businesses—all while blending this into their daily lives. Direct selling thrives with brilliant women standing up for their buying power, their skilled community building, and their passionate drive to work hard. Companies like Avon and USANA Health Sciences continue to empower female entrepreneurs around the globe.

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