Calvin Becerra is the youngest Black Diamond in MonaVie history and his rise to such a rank is a true test of determination and willingness to hit the ground running, spending every waking moment when not working a tradition 9-5 job building his prospect list and enrolling new distributors.
“You have to be willing to work,” said Calvin. “Many are not willing to do that.”
Work was what took him to the rank of Black Diamond in a mere eight months after enrolling in MonaVie. However, just because you hit Black Diamond, doesn’t mean it’s smooth sailing thereafter. In Calvin’s case, Black Diamond was a starting point and launch pad for many lessons learned – lessons he has gladly agreed to share with us through a series of videos highlighting his own “a-ha” moments and best business building tips.
[caption id="attachment_1326" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="Calvin on stage during 2009 Anaheim Regional"][/caption]
But first, let’s get back to Calvin’s story and lesson number one, which starts where his last Black Diamond documentary left off…
Lesson #1: Do not take your foot off the gas pedal and expect your business to build itself, especially if you did not build that business with a strong foundation.
Calvin learned this the hard way. Shortly after hitting Black Diamond he said he decided to take a step back and enjoy the fruits of his eight month labor.
“Where I went wrong is I took my foot off the gas and coasted for 5-6 months and it takes that long for people to lose faith in you,” said Calvin. “If you’re not doing anything then your people won’t do anything – your people are always watching you.”
Calvin said he stopped doing tasting parties, he stopped enrolling and he stopped leading.
He also experienced his first “jumpers” or those who left MonaVie for seemingly greener pastures and admits to having his own doubt and wondered if he should do the same. Luckily he took good friend and fellow Black Diamond Todd Hartog’s advice and put “principles before profit.”
Eventually his volume dropped to that of an Emerald (15,000 points) from Black Diamond (150,000 points), which to many a loss far less significant would have meant throwing in the towel but to Calvin, it meant an opportunity to rebuild and to do it on far more solid ground. But first, he sought the advice of other MonaVie leaders, gleaning as much information as he could get his hands on.
And then he went back to work, making himself a student of networking, and rebuilding his organization from the ground up, this time with some key principles in tact.
He became a prolific enroller, sponsoring 50-60 new distributors in the next year. Also, instead of being the sole leader within his organization, he encouraged his people to organize and sustain their own groups and tasting parties and to ultimately take charge of their own businesses.
Which was Lesson #2: When building a network, key principles must be locked in from the ground level and leaders forged or success is fleeting.
“What I realized right away is that relationships had to be molded and while I had achieved success my people were still just finding their way and if I didn’t build that community within my team and forge those relationships their businesses and subsequently my business would fall apart like in the past,” said Calvin.
Since then, Calvin considers the importance of empowering people right up there with enrolling.
He also decided to get himself grounded. He found just that when he met his fiancé Shannon, and as a new father he appreciates the strength and support of a strong partner who keeps him focused.
[caption id="attachment_1327" align="alignright" width="199" caption="Calvin and Shannon on Black Diamond Destination in Bora Bora, Tahiti"][/caption]
He also got behind the MonaVie brand, not just the products, this time around.
“The MonaVie brand is about more than products,” said Calvin. “It’s about success and strength.”
Finally, he launched himself into the social media platforms, learning as much as he could and using the content generated on MonaVie’s Media Center, BlogMV, Twitter and Facebook pages to fill his own Facebook and Twitter accounts. He used the social media platforms to first, build relationships, which eventually lead to prospects and new enrollees, including most of his leaders in his international business.
“If you are not using these tools, you are missing out,” said Calvin.
And his goal moving forward is to share his lessons learned, as well as, reignite the US market and recreate the excitement felt at the beginning of the MonaVie birth with the help of Senior Vice President Jeff Graham.
Oh, and to secure his Black Diamond status and beyond month after month.
“I had to rebuild over 135,000 points and I did it and that means anyone can bounce back from less – you just have to be willing to go back to work,” said Calvin. “I am proof that success can be achieved over and over again.”
To view Calvin’s first installment in a series of “Tips and A-Ha Moments”, visit the MonaVie YouTube channel. Feel free to comments, questions and video responses
We were introduced by a stranger, Scott and Renita Brannan (Bismarck, ND), at a gas station pump less than 60 days ago, when they were in Minneapolis. We signed up within 2.5 minutes of being presented the opportunity; hadn’t even tasted the juice, but recognized a huge opportunity. By the time Dean’s tank was fueled, he was enrolled. Dean saw “MonaVie” on their Denali and asked what MonaVie was - see how important branding yourself is?! What is your “why?”
We want to get out of the cabinet and granite fabrication business and leave our 50 employees with a new owner; to be employee free.
What is your favorite moment with MonaVie so far?
Favorite moment so far has been winning the Indy 500 promo – Having our name put on the MonaVie Indy 500 racecar and getting Tomas Scheckter’s signed Indy 500 helmet is a once in a lifetime opportunity! That, plus being able to spend two days learning and asking questions of the founder and the top people of MonaVie: Henry Marsh, Brig and Lita Hart, Bobby Robinson, Jeff Graham, Grayson Maule, Shante Schroeder, Tomas Sheckter and the rest of the MonaVie gang!
Share your best business building tip
Don’t make assumptions or decisions for or about people – you never know who’s open to a new opportunity! And that means from the amount of cases they put on auto-ship or them wanting to run the business to a Diamond! One of my friends of over 30 years, that I would have never thought to be interested, wants all in after presenting the opportunity to him! Always be asking questions to qualify people.
Where to from here? Goals, aspirations, plans...
Our next goal is to work diligently with all of our downline to make them stars and star-makers! Get them their purple card and help them reach their goals and dreams.
Our goal is to become Black Diamond by Dec 31, 2010. By becoming a Black Diamond, we will replace our income at Affordable Granite & Cabinetry, which will allow us to either sell our business or make it employee owned. The time and freedom we will have gained will allow us to volunteer with charities that have special meaning to us.
Do you want an opportunity to have MonaVie Senior VP Jeff Graham show up at your next home tasting party? Here’s your chance.
For the next 30 days, video tape a short video from each tasting party you conduct and enter it into the drawing. Every new tasting party will be considered a unique entry, which means the more tasting parties you have and submit, the more chances you have to win, and that is a win-win, right?!
If you’re chosen, Jeff Graham will show up to one of your tasting parties with our new EMV Lite product, a message, EMV Lite swag and another corporate companion. Oh and we’ll have our own video camera running at that tasting party, which you know we’ll post. Because here on BlogMV, we’re in the business of making you famous…or at least recognizing your awesomeness.
Here's a quick message from Jeff to tell you more:
Here’s what we want you to capture on video:
Number of people at your home tasting party
You sharing the product
Tasting party set up and any MonaVie swag
Reactions from your guests
A thought or two as to why you should win
I’ll post a couple sample videos this week so you get an idea of what we’re looking for but for the most part, keep them short, creative and keep them coming! Oh, and have fun with these. Send your entries between now and June 18th. We’ll draw lucky winners just before the International “Vision” Convention.
We may have a few other giveaways along the way…which is a total secret so don’t tell anyone I told you already.
You’ll likely need to sign up for a free YouTube account if you don’t already have one. If that is far too technical for you, get help or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll walk you through the process. Finally, I'll be approving all replies before they go live.
Well, today wraps up the MORE Project Expedition to Brazil. It has been both an exhausting and an exhilarating week.
For days, we kept a schedule with only about 4 hours of sleep per night. We saw some of the most remarkable sites in the world, including the Amazon rainforest, the Amazon River, the Christ the Redeemer Statue in Rio de Janeiro, but the most moving thing we saw was the reaction of children to a little love and respect.
The Black Diamonds completed a service project that involved real heavy lifting, moving dirt and debris in preparation for the construction of another home for the less fortunate in the favelas.
The trip ended today with the Regional in Sao Paulo. What great energy! The four hour event featured Dallin articulating the vision for MonaVie, including tips on building the business without treating people like nails—“don’t pound people into this business!”
Everyone had high praise for Mauricio’s leadership in Brazil. As the GM, he has successfully laid a foundation for success in one of the world’s largest direct selling markets.
Personally, I had fun. After studying Portuguese for the last six months, I delivered an 8 minute presentation on the Preferred Customer Program – in Portuguese. I don’t think anyone focused much on my message, but they seemed pleased that I would take the time to learn enough Portuguese to be able to give my talk in their language.
As I wrap up my reporting, I want to thank Katy, Valerie and Andrea for the great job they did in organizing this week. It was a non-stop adventure!
Finally, I want to thank MonaVie’s great distributors, not just the Black Diamonds, for their support of the MORE Project. By teaching them to read and write, to do math and to see the world through an international lens, we enable them to become highly productive members of society who have options beyond drugs and prostitution. While we won’t end poverty in our lifetimes, we will end poverty for our kids for the rest of their lives. Together, we make a difference.
Today I left the MORE Project with Dallin one day ahead of the rest of the group to head for Sao Paulo in preparation for the Regional event here tomorrow.
It was a shame to leave the MORE Project early, but we left a great group of close friends to stay there in service. Karree, who stayed, reported that they were working very hard doing manual labor at the new professional school, which is slated to open soon.
Meanwhile, Dallin was taking a group of four Brazilian leaders to Sao Paulo on the MonaVie Jet. It was exciting for me to go along for the ride.
Most of us will live and die without ever getting a chance to ride on a private jet. The world’s most successful corporations routinely fly their chief executives around on such planes because they are more efficient—meaning that despite the cost of the planes, they save more money than they cost. MonaVie is no different, but by taking distributors along for the ride the impact goes from efficiency to synergy as the jet becomes a part of the compensation plan.
Our four leaders, Marcelo Serakides, Luis Soares, Francisco Nunes, and Bruno Grilo work synergistically across lines to build the Brazilian market. Weekly volume has nearly tripled in the last six months as these great leaders have built their personal success. If four guys ever deserved a quick flight on the MonaVie jet, these four did!
For me, today was the pinnacle of the MORE Project Expedition. We visited the Villa Iparanga favela, the Believers Project school, the Nehemiah House built by funding from MonaVie Management and the Larsen Lodge, where we are staying tonight. These are all key parts of the MORE Project.
In the Villa Iparanga, we saw firsthand the challenges we face and the impact we are having. Amidst abject poverty—the stuff of television commercials—we found the Nehemiah House funded by the MonaVie Corporate Management, including General Managers who met here one year ago. The home is now occupied by a woman who was trained by the MORE Project to read and write and who, upon completing this training at age 50, obtained her first permanent job as a city sanitation worker—a position she holds proudly and that blesses her family.
We visited the school at the Believers Project, which must be the happiest place on earth. Disney’s parks do not hold a candle to this place. It is an absolute sanctuary. The kids are safe here. Some have now been attending the school for four years. Their entire lives have already been changed. They are not only learning to read and write and do math, but are learning foreign languages, a global perspective and self confidence. They will not only graduate from school, they will graduate from the favelas and become great contributors to making Brazil an even more wonderful country.
Tonight, we are staying in the Larsen Family Lodge, which was funded by Dallin and Karree and is used to house those visiting the MORE Project as volunteers. It is a wonderful, safe and Spartan lodge that truly makes it easier for the volunteers to come and serve. A modest and informal dedication ceremony took place tonight. Dallin and Karree were both emotional in describing their vision for the use of the property to bless the lives of both the volunteers and those they volunteer to serve.
[Due to technology issues, I’m afraid more photos and video will have to wait at least 24 hours.]
Words can hardly express the feelings that we all shared today here in Brazil.
We started the day very early—5:00 AM to see the acai market in full swing. It is winding down by sunup so we have to get out there early to experience it. While the rest of the world sleeps, acai harvesters are hard at work getting their products down the Amazon River to the market place in Belem. What a sight to behold.
After a quick breakfast break, we were headed up river in a small boat to visit a village on an island in the river. There, we visited a school chosen by the MORE Project and delivered much needed school supplies and visited briefly with the beautiful children there. I was impressed by how well mannered the children were; my wife is a school teacher in the U.S. and I can assure you that kids aren’t so well behaved in her school! Clearly, we were all more touched by these darling children than they were by us. I am grateful that we had a chance to visit them.
Then, strolling through the jungle, we saw a local man harvest Brazil nuts from their almost impermiable shell. Amazing! Then, the same 67-year-old zipped up an acai palm just to show off. Tim Marks gave it a try, too. He wasn’t bleeding too badly after his attempt, but enough to keep anyone else from making a serious attempt to duplicate the heroics of the local.
Following our excursion up river, we went to see a plant where acai is processed for MonaVie. We were very impressed by what we saw. The operations are genuinely first rate and just what you’d hope to see in a food processing plant anywhere in the world. The operation was genuinely, religiously clean and operates to world-class standards.
As with yesterday’s post, you can find some photos of the day below.
May I confess that I found the first day of the MORE Project Expedition just a little depressing? As the leaders gathered from all around the world to come help the MORE Project, it became perfectly clear to me that they have not come on vacation, but rather on a mission. I didn’t come emotionally prepared. I came to work, not to serve. I faced the stark reality today that my heart was not in the right place as I was surrounded by people who live to serve.
I was amazed at their grace under pressure. Several missed a flight today due to slow baggage handling, and you’d think that they’d won an extra few hours in Disney World, not an airport. All smiles. All happy. I am convinced that this is the product of having your heart in the right place. If you are here to serve, a missed connection doesn’t matter.
The MonaVie field leaders are absolutely first rate human beings. They are role models for all of us. I will be posting more in the coming days about what we see and learn, but tonight, I’m putting my heart in the right place and I’m ready to join the MonaVie team in serving the people of Brazil this week.
Below are some photos of these outstanding leaders!