Making a career move from Finance to the Beauty industry, mum of three Jacquie McMullan tells us about the #1 US skincare brand that is about to launch in Australia, and how their incredible products and innovative business model is changing skin and changing lives.
Tell us about yourself
I’m from Perth, and moved to Sydney in 2010 with my husband, after 10 years in London. We have three young kids, and settled in Balmain just before our eldest was born – we absolutely love the area!
I studied Commerce at uni and then trained as an accountant. When I say that, most people think – boring! But I’ve never really worked in a traditional accounting role and my accounting foundation has allowed me to have a pretty interesting career. Very early on I got involved in major change and transformation activities, for example where a company goes through a merger with another company, or selling off part of its operations, or a major restructuring. Being involved in these types of changes allows you to learn a lot about a company in a short period of time and you get to work with people from all departments including very senior management. You also get to travel a bit, but I was usually so busy working that it’s not as exciting as it sounds!
It was the kind of career that was great when I was younger and didn’t have any commitments but getting married and having a family has changed my perspective and my priorities and it no longer fits with my life. So, I’m now moving into something very different!
Tell us about Rodan & Fields
Rodan + Fields is the namesake brand of Dr Katie Rodan and Dr Kathy Fields, the Stanford trained dermatologists who created Proactiv. They were a top selling clinical skincare brand in high end US department stores by 2006, however realised their success came from word of mouth referrals, so in 2008 moved to a direct selling model. In 2015 they commenced their global expansion by launching in Canada and then sold their rights to Proactiv to focus on R+F. Australia is the next to launch.
R+F generated USD 1billion in revenue in 2016 and are now the #1 skincare brand in the US across all price points and sales channels – having surpassed the likes of Estee Lauder, Lancôme and Clinique. That kind of success tells me this company must have both an amazing business model and products that people want.
The products sound amazing. What skin care benefits do they offer and who can use them? What results can we expect?
The doctors wanted to address the main skin care concerns they were seeing in their practises. They use a regimen-based approach, which provides all the products you need to use and in which order. They combine over-the-counter pharmaceutical as well as active cosmetic ingredients to deliver clinically proven results. All regimens undergo third party clinical tests to ensure safety and efficacy.
There are three Regimens to be launched in Australia – Soothe, for sensitive skin, Reverse for sun damage, and the #1 anti-ageing brand in the US, Redefine. An online solution tool guides people on which Regimen to use for their individual needs, as sometimes a combination is required. The average person’s skin takes about 30 days to regenerate; the real benefits show in 4-6 weeks though many people see improvements earlier. All products come with a 60-day no-questions-asked money back guarantee, which demonstrates how the company stands behind the efficacy of their products.
When do these highly anticipated products arrive in Australia? What is the best way to access them?
We’re expecting a launch date to be announced soon. Until then we are in what is called a ‘pre-enrolment’ stage. I am pre-enrolled to be a consultant and will convert to a consultant upon launch.
The R+F model is direct selling – they do not sell in stores and the products can only be purchased through independent consultants. So, the best way to access them is to contact me!
What is direct selling and how does the business work?
Direct selling is where a company markets and sells products or services to consumers without involving a physical store. They can also be known as multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing companies. Consultants sell products and bring on new consultants into their teams, who also sell products, and they all earn commissions and profits. This is how R+F operates; they don’t advertise and people learn about the products and business by talking with consultants.
Direct selling companies aren’t all the same however. For example, R+F isn’t a ‘home parties company’ – this was important to me, as there is no way I could host parties at my home! Also, R+F consultants don’t hold stock, manage money or deliver products. Corporate does all that and Consultants just share their website link to prospective customers. I really like the simplicity of their business model.
You’re a busy mum of 3, how do you find the time to take on an opportunity like this? What does it mean for you personally?
This opportunity came along while on maternity leave with my third, and just before my eldest started school. I was dreading the thought of returning to my corporate role. I have a great employer, but I knew the nature of my job meant I was going to miss out on so much that was important to me. Things like attending assemblies when she’s getting an award or being a parent volunteer for class activities. So the timing was perfect to find this – a truly flexible opportunity, without the usual heavy lifting of starting a new business. Though, I already felt super busy and just wasn’t sure how to fit this in.
I was on a training call with Canada’s top earner Rachael Johnson when she said simply ‘hey, we’re all super busy, but we find time for things that are a priority for us’. So I thought hard about why I was doing this; in R+F they refer to this as ‘Your Why’. It’s the reason you keep going when things get tough, as any business does. My ‘why’ is that I have always wanted to be a stay at home mum!! We’ve found Sydney expensive, more so than London, so I’ve needed to keep working. R+F will allow me to be at home but also contribute financially. I do, of course, have to let some things go – like housework sometimes! The difference is that I get to choose how I spend my time, and that is so important to me when you never quite know what each day is going to hold and how your kids are going to need you.
It sounds like a great opportunity for mums. Who else does it suit?
We have all sorts of people in our teams; different ages, backgrounds and with different goals. It’s not just women; there are men and even couples who are pre enrolled. Some people work it like a business so they can replace their current income or support their family. Others are looking to make extra cash alongside a job they love or for a holiday fund. Some people just like the social interaction. Whatever your goals, there is an incredibly supportive network of mentors to help you get what you want from it.
As my background is working with businesses, I have also been focussing on reaching out to owner operator beauty businesses in my network. Hairdressers, nail salons, brow bars, beauty salons all have existing networks that they can share the products with, and this opportunity could provide an additional diversified revenue stream for them.
I’m reading a book by Romi Neustadt who built a 7-figure R+F business in the US. She believes that anyone can do this – as long as they are coachable, consistent, can ‘get comfortable with being uncomfortable’ and willing to work hard.
Share with us your most life-changing experience and how it affected you?
The catalyst for many life-changing experiences was my move to London. I was able to travel extensively, take up great career opportunities and make many friendships that will last my lifetime. And of course, I met my husband – people laugh at how I travelled half way around the world to meet a man who was born in the same hospital, in the same year as me. It was obviously meant to be!
I can’t wait until our children are a little older so that we can travel with them and share all of the amazing things that the world has to offer. We are lucky to live in Australia, but there is so much history and culture in the rest of the world that we want them to experience too.
How do you like to relax?
After a long week at work my husband and I used to love going out for a meal and a bottle of wine but as I’ve been either pregnant or breastfeeding for most of the past 6 years – that has been replaced by yoga! Marie Wright who teaches at Body Ethos is amazing – I can walk in to one of her classes stressed out and broken and leave an hour later feeling balanced and blissful!
Favourite spots in Sydney’s Inner West?
We do love going out for a meal or a coffee, and I have to confess that over the past few years we don’t often get very far past Balmain… Le Cafeier on Darling St has been a regular of ours since they opened; Oscar and Arda have known each of our kids since they were babies and adore them.
We also enjoy going to Gladstone Park Bowling Club on a sunny day – I can’t say I’ve ever bowled though!! It’s great sitting outside under the umbrellas and the marquee is perfect for kids’ birthday parties. We’ve hosted a few there as our average-sized Balmain home can’t cope with 20+ kids!