We Are Premier – Eileen Koehler

As Rally approaches, let’s hear from our 2013 Marge Caldwell Encourager of the Year Award recipient Eileen Koehler.  Eileen and her husband, Charlie, are Seven Diamond Designers in Easton, Pennsylvania who have served as Premier Jewelers since May 2000. Eileen has faithfully grown her business by supporting and encouraging their entire Premier Family.  The Marge Caldwell Encourager of the Year Award is awarded to a person who exhibits the gift of encouragement and who has a passion for caring and loving others.  Eileen has certainly exemplified the spirit of Premier through her 14 years of service.

Picture4

Rita Real Thing

When I first was introduced to Premier, I was already able to stay home with our two children, 6 and 3 years old at the time, but we really could use extra income to help with our bills and future college funds. I didn’t know of anything I could do that would enable me to make my own hours so I wouldn’t miss time with my children. I never imagined that I would be in direct sales. While I had been approached by representatives in other direct sales companies, it just didn’t feel right. At least, not until I started with Premier.

I attended my first Jewelry Show just to be nice. I had no interest in high fashion jewelry. YES, I was a “Rita Real Thing.” I only wore real gold and silver jewelry. I didn’t have a lot of it, but what I did have, I wore EVERY SINGLE DAY. At the show, I watched all the women, who also wore the “real” stuff, go crazy for Premier’s jewelry! They loved the versatility! I purchased a small something but did not book a show. Wasn’t quite “hooked” yet.

Hooked on Premier

Over the next few weeks, I kept bumping into the women who were at that show and now wearing their new Premier pieces. They looked FABULOUS!!!! So put together!! I was getting hooked.Picture3

After my second show, I really started to like the jewelry. What caught my ear though was hearing that Jewelers made 50% of everything they sold. WOW! I just assumed it was much less.

One of the ladies told me I would be great at Premier. Then another said the same thing. Ahhhh, the power of encouragement! It wasn’t until then that I seriously gave this business much thought. When I got home, my husband asked if I bought some nice jewelry. I said, “Well, I think I bought a business!!!” He was totally supportive and on board with Premier. He wasn’t sure it would work, but his motto was, “If you don’t try, you’ll never know.” I signed up within the next couple of days.

My goal was to just do maybe two shows a month and absolutely no sponsoring! Didn’t want any part of that!! I obviously hadn’t yet experienced what Premier was all about. Once I realized how fun it was to share this business with others and help them achieve their goals, I sponsored my first Jeweler within two months.

I’m able to encourage because others encouraged me.

Throughout my Premier journey, I had been encouraged by so many, especially when I was a new Jeweler. I remember so many smiling faces and hearing their encouraging words to me.  This impacted my attitude and my Premier business. I told myself that when I got to Leadership, I wanted to do the same thing for others.

Picture2My husband, Charlie, has always been my biggest cheerleader and supporter. Even when I come home from a Show that wasn’t all that great, he reminds me of why I’m doing this.  He tells me that there are going to be both good and bad days. “You got this,” he says often to me.

My Downline encourages me all the time with how hard they work and their drive to achieve their goals. It’s so important to be there for them and listen to what’s going on in their businesses AND their lives.

The friendships that I have formed over these many years are immeasurable. I cherish every one of them.

Rally Changed Everything

I attended my first National Rally, and of course, I fell in love with Andy (how can you not!) and got a deeper understanding of what Premier stood for!! That’s why I tell my Jewelers that until they go to National Rally, they really don’t “get it”. It was there that I realized this was God’s plan for me!!

Soon after Rally, I was doing a show and I noticed this one guest was receiving lots of hugs from the other ladies. I knew something was up but quickly forgot about it because I had to start the show.

At checkout that woman told me what a nice job I had done and that I made her laugh for the first time in months. Turns out her husband was dying of cancer and she was devastated. This show was the first time she left the house in months!! She said she had such a good time laughing and looking at all the beautiful jewelry. I was in tears!! I realized then that it’s not about the sales or the jewelry, it’s about touching lives!! This was one of many “God Winks” I have experienced. Making people feel good and connecting with them as much as you can is the key.

Receiving the Marge Caldwell Encourager of the Year Award was such an incredible honor for me. It was wonderful to have Jewelers share with me how I encouraged them in their business at one point. That’s what it’s all about!! What an honor to be able to touch someone’s life with your actions or words.

Picture1

 

We Are Premier – Amy Jo and Mike Bazzle

Picture10

Amy Jo and Mike Bazzle are Four Diamond Designers from Belding, Michigan.  They began their Premier Designs journey in March of 2002 and because of their extraordinary vision and effort to expand and grow their Premier business, they have not only built a great business, but also received the 2013 Vision Award.  They inspire others to dream big for themselves.  Their greatest accomplishment is their family, and they have consistently encouraged their children to reach for their goals as well.

We Are Premier

What an honor to be asked to represent Premier in a blog entry titled “We Are Premier.”

Everywhere we go, we represent the company of Premier. How I act today is a reflection of WHO Premier is because I AM Premier to all of my Customers, Picture14Hostesses, friends, and family. We, the Bazzle family, are Premier. Likewise, any woman/couple who holds a current “Jeweler number” IS Premier!

Have you ever pondered this?

WOW, the implications behind these words are powerful. The reputation that proceeds us will either send a desirable or detestable taste of who Premier is to everyone watching. As a nation of Jewelers, we must honor each other, with a life worth repeating. Some easy ways we can do that is to never hide our mistakes, be quick to apologize when we are wrong, and take the responsibility for our actions.  For example, when I mess up on a replacement by not sending it into Premier quick enough, I owe it to every other Jeweler to tell the Customer, “I am so sorry, I messed up.” Otherwise, the Customer might think that Premier isn’t trust-worthy. When I’ve done this, she has thanked me for my honesty and I haven’t lost a Customer!

Or another example is my biggest fail to date. I accidentally swiped the credit card of a Customer for $1,000 instead of the $100 she owed.Picture7 I realized the mistake right away and did not complete the transaction, but I failed to explain to her what had happened.  While she was never charged, her checking account was put “on hold.” I didn’t even know that was possible. Well, as you can assume, she was mad – super mad – rightfully mad – and I was to blame. I apologized and took responsibility, but my greatest fear was realized … she no longer wanted anything to do with Premier. I cried, not for myself, but because I felt the pain of damaging the reputation of a great company.

On the opposite spectrum there have also been great “wins.”  As a new Jeweler, at my fourth Jewelry Show, I met a gal who seemed extremely interested in everything I explained about Premier. Quickly, I realized “this gal would love to join Premier!” Yeah! Picture8But after asking some detailed questions, I also realized she had been a Hostess before! I was only watering a seed that had been planted by another Premier Jeweler. I purposed in my heart to find her original Jeweler to tell her about this very “hot prospect.” And I was glad to hear that the guest signed up as a Jeweler within the month!

Mike and I believe that because we’ve always been willing to give freely to others, we have also been greatly blessed. We’ve been blessed to serve 871 hostesses earn free jewelry, and 88 women start a Premier business of their own. This was all just one at a time, faithfully serving the next family that God brought into our lives.

Reputation Matters

Proverbs 27: 21b – “We are valued by what others say of us.”

Picture3Premier is also valued by what others say of you, of me, of us.  “We Are Premier,” Oh, how I pray that we bring great value to a fundamentally great company!

I knew when I was 6 years old that I wanted to teach others! I graduated from Cornerstone University with Bachelor’s Degree in Language Arts and Education. What I didn’t know at 6, was that God was grooming me to teach in Premier! I chose to pursue Premier instead of pursuing a career in teaching.

I began my Premier journey in 2002, in order to be a stay-at-home mom. As a young woman, I never cared much about fashion. I was the gal you might have seen happily walking around Walmart in her polka-dot pj pants. (I am so sorry, at that time of my life I didn’t realize that was dis-respectful to the community.) I preferred to be in my favorite baseball hat than high fashion jewelry. It was Picture12way out of my comfort zone.  (As seen in this pic, I’m the only one wearing a cap at a ball-game!)

What did prepare me for Premier as a young woman, wife, and first-time mother,
was having a heart to honor God and serve others. I had been praying a popular prayer in 2002 – The Prayer of Jabez. 1 Chronicles 4:10, “He was the one who prayed to the God of Israel, ‘Oh, that you would bless me and expand my territory! Please be with me in all that I do, and keep me from all trouble and pain!’ And God granted him his request.” When I read the last page of Premier’s business plan, it said, Picture11“there are no territories.” it didn’t get any bigger than that! I decided, “Ok, God, this is what I believe you are leading me to do!” We signed up for Premier that week!  I was about to be way out of my comfort zone and blessed for a very long time!

Now 12 years into our Premier journey, I have had lots of highs and lows. Mike likes to tease that our 4 kiddos are “Premier speed-bumps” because when they were born, everything in Premier slowed down for a little bit. But the nicest thing for us about Premier has been that we have been able to adapt our Premier business into whatever we need it to be for our family – whether Picture4that was holding two Jewelry Shows a month, showing up to training or striving to serve a wildly talented team of women and men that God brought into our lives. WHY? Because We ARE Premier!

How do you win in this company? You never quit, no matter how many “speed-bumps” you come across and no matter what those “speed-bumps” may look like. You slow down when you must and you begin accelerating as soon as you can!

Since January 2011, Picture9I’ve been able to work side-by-side with my husband and best friend.  We have chosen to work Premier full-time together. That’s right – a family of six living on Premier alone.

We did not do this because Mike lost his job. No, he “re-wired” from his “9-5 job.”  Because of the leadership and administrative skills that Mike possesses, we knew the impact we could have as a stay-at-home couple for our children, for our marriage, and for our financial future.Picture5

We don’t know what tomorrow may bring, but we know that whatever it looks like, whether its 10 shows a year or 200, whether we have diamonds behind our name or not, our future will have Premier in it. We will aspire to be our personal best to honor God and serve others!

How do we know that?!?! Because, we ARE Premier!  Are YOU?

Picture13 Picture2

 

We Are Premier – Joni Brummel

Our 2013 Premier Princess, Christmas photoJoni Brummel, has consistently exhibited the Spirit of Premier by serving others and honoring God through her Premier Business.  She and her husband, Mel, are Silver Executive Directors from Michigan and have been Jewelers for 18 years, building their business and leading others with integrity, kindness and an eagerness to help others excel.    

Have you ever wondered how one decision could change a life in such a dramatic way?

In 1985, God called Andy and Joan Horner to start Premier Designs, Inc. based on the Philosophy and Purpose to honor God and serve people.  Little did they know that their one decision would be used by God to change not only theirs, but countless lives … just like ours!

Becoming a Premier Jeweler was that one decision for me – it impacted my life in dramatic ways.

Mel and I joined Premier in April of 1996 to earn additional income to help our daughters attend college.  I was a nurse and we were managing a local campground here in Michigan.  I did not wear jewelry; I was the furthest thing from a “sales person.”  God has used this business opportunity and the people of Premier to teach me about finances, leadership, relationships, and faith.

Finances:  Working our business has provided for our family financially.

We have been able to completely pay for two college educations for our daughters,
Becca and Melissa, and a beautiful wedding for Melissa and Dave.
God has provided financially through our hard work and Premier’s generous compensation plan more than we could have ever imagined.  brummel - rallyIt’s our joy that both of our daughters are also Premier Jewelers and working their businesses to support themselves and their families.

Leadership: It’s a blessing to serve our Downline and grow our business.

I have also been given the privilege to help many other women start their own Premier businesses.  I have been greatly touched through the lives of these women, including my daughters.  These ladies have become not only my friends, but they have become amazing leaders who serve to enrich the lives of the people God brings into their life.

Relationships: The Premier Family is amazing!

We have really enjoyed the friendships Premier has given us with fellow Jewelers, but one of the unique blessings for me over the past 18 years is that over 1,000 women have invited me into their homes.   brummelAs I share the hope of Premier with my Hostesses in their own home, I have been encouraged generously by them.  God has used Premier’s Hostess Plan to bless countless Hostesses with free jewelry and a night of fun and fellowship with their friends.

Not only have we been impacted by our extended Premier Family, but the Brummel Family values the many memories we have been able to make together on leadership trips, at Rallies, and various Premier events.  We work alongside of one another, and we do life together as a family in Premier!  We “Count It All Joy” to be in this together and see the blessings of Premier as it reaches out to others.

Faith: Premier has deepened my relationship with God.

This is the greatest impact Premier has brought to my life.  His patience, love and faithfulness to me are truly life-changing.  Through Premier, God has given me countless opportunities to share His amazing love and grace with thousands of women.  When they believe Premier is just about jewelry and earning money and they find the love and hope of Jesus in this business, my heart overflows with joy!  Saying “YES” to Premier’s opportunity to enrich lives and serve others was that one decision I made that has truly changed my life forever.

 

brummel - disney

My Track to Success

Designer Jenny Murtha from San Jose, California, shares how she made Designer in her first year as a Premier Jeweler.

Picture1

On January 15, 2013 I signed my Premier Designs Jeweler Contract and joined the Premier Family.  If I were to describe my personality of who I was a year ago, I would say a simple, sometimes quiet, and even a shy girl by nature, with a kind and loyal heart, a wife to Brendan of 9 years, and a Mommy to three little girls (Norah 5, Laney 3, and Ruby 4 months at that time).  Why Premier?  Well, I had been looking for something that was all for ME, as well as, something that would also help me contribute to our family and not always feeling as if I was “taking away from the family pot” when wanting to buy “extra” things.  I have a degree in Broadcast journalism and a teaching credential in Physical Education.  I had taught for 6 years, but it was so important for me to find something I could do while being home with my girls.  Premier, of course, was the perfect fit.

Here I am now, just a year later, still simple, quiet and shy, but also confident, blessed, happy, proud, and grateful because of what Premier has brought into my life.

What an incredible journey my first year was…..
  • January 27, 2013 –  My Training Show
  • Completed Quick start 9 in 30 days
  • Earned Amethyst Crown Jewel
  • Sponsored First Jeweler in March
  • Achieved Founder’s Club
  • Completed 25 Jewelry Shows and earned Jewelry Show Club in May
  • Sponsored my 2nd Jeweler in May and made Joan’s Rookie Team
  • Earned Sapphire Crown Jewel
  • Sponsored 3rd Jeweler just before National Rally in July
  • Earned Ruby Crown Jewel in September
  • Sponsored 4th Jeweler and became a Builder in September
  • Sponsored 5th and 6th Jewelers in October
  • Sponsored 7th Jeweler in November and became DESIGNER before Thanksgiving AND had earned enough points for my husband and I to go on the Designer Cruise for Free!
  • Sponsored my 8th Jeweler in December
  • Completed 92 personal Shows and 8 Training Shows for my Jewelers to achieve Century Club by December 15, 2013 in which I then took a month long vacation!
  • No. 2 Sponsor at Sacramento Regional Rally in January 2014
How did I do this?  A few ways…..

SUPPORT FROM MY HUSBAND:  Picture2My husband cared for our girls while I was away at all of my shows, OP’s, and trainings.  With all of our extended family in Kansas and us in California – he was the sole supporter for our kids.  He always made himself available and adjusted his full-time work hours to be home in time for me to run out the door.

SETTING GOALS AND STICKING TO THEM: By the time I completed my Quickstart, I wholly realized how much could be gained from this amazing company.  Here was this incredible opportunity just waiting for anyone to grab it.  So I thought, “why not me?  And why wait?”  I sat down and committed my “Why” to paper, and set a goal of becoming Designer by Christmas.  I wanted to spend my first year creating and building a very strong foundation for my business.  I shared all of this with three very important people who I knew would keep me focused and would remind me of my goals if I ever got discouraged.  So grateful for these three ladies:  My Mom, My Premier Mom (Bridgitt Fleming) and my Premier Grandma (Leah Mitchell).  Just having my goals on paper and really sharing them was powerful.

TRAININGS AND TRULY APPLYING IT:  I became a sponge, listening to and learning from all the Leaders before me in Premier.  I attended trainings, absorbed as much as I could online, Picture5and started reading books that would better me in my business.  I applied what I was taught no matter how awkward it may have felt at the time.  When a trainer said I needed to do 6-8 shows a month, I made sure I did 6-8 shows a month.  In the end I really did 7-14 shows each month.  In the beginning, I asked for shows, asked for favors, gave an extra incentive for helping me reach my goals if I had to (QS 6, 9, and Jewelry Club), but once those first few months were rolling it became easy to book future shows by playing “Chance and Honor” as my booking activity.  I had the momentum I needed.   With so many shows on my calendar, I was less discouraged when somebody cancelled or needed to postpone.

SHARING LEADS TO SPONSORING:  I did a sponsoring activity from the very beginning even though it made my stomach crawl.  My Premier Mom said I had to do it, so I did … simple as that!  I did basic “Question/Answer” for a little while and handed out “Diva Dollars” to those who asked questions, but then one day I got brave and tried “Big Money!”  I found that it was a much better visual which even caught the attention of those who weren’t necessarily paying much attention to me.  I also found that by simply saying “I’m going to take a few minutes to tell you about Premier.  Not too long ago I was sitting at a Jewelry Show like you are today and the Jeweler shared this information with me.  I’m forever grateful that she did.  So if nothing else, please just tuck this information away for the future.”

I also use Guest Surveys and ask ladies to circle their interest level in hearing more.  If they marked a 6 or higher I was sure to get a date on my calendar for an OP within a few days.  If they weren’t able to get together, I scheduled a phone OP.  As months went on, I started doing Shopportunities, Starbucks OP nights, a Hostess Appreciation brunch with my Premier Mom and Grandma.  I never missed an opportunity when challenged by my Premier Grandma.  When she said to write down 20 names and invite them to an OP, I did it 5 minutes later … always following up and “Keeping It Personal.”  Toward the end of my year, I had a huge bank of Hostesses and Customers that I could invite and talk with – so that challenge wasn’t that hard.  I also learned that even those who circled the lower numbers on my guest surveys about interest in the business were great candidates for sharing with too!  After all, three of the girls I sponsored were a 4 and below!

MANAGING FAMILY Picture3AND WORK:  I knew to reach my goals I’d have to WORK.  I didn’t just luck into this; I worked hard.  By day, I ran my girls to school, dropped off, picked up, appointments, meetings, preschool work days, after school activities, leading my mom’s group, keeping health records for preschool, on and on.  I had a lot on my plate as a full-time mom.  I kept myself on track by making lists and crossing things off whenever I could.  I was constantly adding to my lists, but always crossing things off throughout the day.  I snuck in phone calls and emails during nap times and lunch.  My girls are my priority!  Each day, I’d dedicate my full attention to playing with my girls and making them feel important, and then they’d “allow” me to also work while playing together themselves.  My husband took on more house work and bedtime routines after his day job so that I could focus a few hours in the evening on mine.  It was a constant balancing act that took some finesse, but ALL worth what was to be gained from this opportunity.

NEW GOALS FOR 2014: 6-8 shows a month, sponsor 7 new Jewelers, and to help my phenomenal team of Premier Daughters to build up their own businesses.  1 Diamond by Christmas 2014!!!  Why not, right?!  Just writing that down on paper gets me fired up!  Now time to get to work!

Picture4