Chairman’s Club | Herbalife International
Dan Waldron’s Millionaire Training Story
My story starts when I was living in Houston and working a dead-end job making $7.50 an hour repairing furniture. I stumbled into Herbalife, by accident, but in reality, it wasn’t an accident, but more a twist of fate. If I had walked into the library a couple of minutes later, I might not be where I am today.
One evening I was visiting the library researching possible new careers, and I look over and see a woman selling something to another woman. They exchanged money, and the customer went on her way. I’ve always been big on studying people and noticing things, so I went up to the woman selling and asked what she was doing. She told me she worked for Herbalife and invited me to an opportunity meeting. I go to the meeting and find out it costs $29.95 to join at the lowest level. I didn’t have $29.95, so I had to wait two weeks to get some money together. At the time I was making so little money even with working full-time, I was desperate to earn some extra even if it was only $100 a month.
I save up my money and show up at the woman’s house, who had invited me to the meeting and knocked on the door, ready to get my kit. I hand her my money, and she tells me it’s $32.45, not $29.95 because of taxes. Honest truth, I went out to my car, got my ashtray and dumped out all the change, and counted out nickels, dimes, and pennies on that woman’s kitchen table. She was just as broke as I was, so she needed the $30.45 right away. My kit arrives, and I got started on December 17, 1982. At first, I didn’t do much with the package, but eventually I called my mom who lives in upstate New York and convinced my dad and her to try it. My mom ends up losing weight, and my fad loses weight, and now they’re telling everyone in my big Italian family about how great this Herbalife stuff is. I’m sending them tons of products and making some great part-time money while I continuing to work at the furniture repair business.
When my kit first arrives, I was still living in Houston but was about to move to Austin to go to school. That’s the real reason why I needed to earn the extra money so that I could attend community college. I had a buddy who lived in Austin who coached athletes, and I wanted to do the same thing, but I needed a degree for that. Herbalife felt like the perfect opportunity to make those dreams happen. I remember the kit came with a little button that said, LOSE WEIGHT NOW, ASK ME HOW! I called up Sandy, the woman who signed me up, and asked her, “What do I do with this?”
She told me, “Put it on, go walk around somewhere, and somebody will ask you about it.” I was so naive and clueless. I put on the button, went into a grocery store, and started walking up and down the aisles just looking at people. I wasn’t asking them anything.
I called Sandy back up and told her, “Nobody asked me about my button.”
She said, “Did you say, ‘Hi’ or talk to anyone at all?”
It just goes to show you, I had no business mind at all during this time. Eventually, someone did ask me about the button – a girl in one of my college classes looked at my button and said, “How did you lose weight?” I had no idea what to tell her. I just started talking and showed her the little catalog, which at the time was only four pages. She looked through it and starts telling me all the things she’d like to order. I’m flipping out, and then I’m thinking, I don’t have any product to give her. She circles everything she wants and then hands me a check for $109. I called Sandy again, and she tells me to go cash the check and then she sends me the products from a Greyhound bus in Houston. I pick up the order from the bus station in downtown Austin and bring it over to the girl. She ends up loving the products and tells her girlfriends all about it.
I was running these little bags of orders all over campus. One day, my anatomy and physiology professor asked me what I was doing. At this point, I had a plan, and I was starting to learn some stuff, so I tell her, “Oh, I’m helping people lose weight with these products.” She ends up ordering $400 worth of items, and I’m so excited.
My parents continue to use the products, and friends and family are ordering so much, I eventually tell them they need to sign up themselves and become distributors because I’m in school. I can’t keep shipping products up there all the time to New York. Things were getting out of control, so I told them they needed to order from Herbalife directly. Now things are rocking and rolling along. My royalties go from $2,000 a month to $5,000, and at the time, my expenses were minimal. I was rooming with a friend, and $500 a month was all I needed to pay my bills.
Larry and Mark would often tell us to bank our money and live off our retail and wholesale business, so I did just that. When I got those royalty checks, I put them in the bank. I would pay my taxes, but I wouldn’t spend any of the money I earned. I never went out and bought a new car or new stuff. I just continued to live modestly. After graduating from college in 1986, I decided I didn’t want to be a coach at that time and decided I wanted to keep going with Herbalife instead.
Unfortunately, that’s around the time that Herbalife went through its controversy. I loved Herbalife and wanted to stay with it even though times were challenging. That’s when Larry’s The Millionaire Training saved me. It helped give me the basics and skills I needed. When I was in college, I was only able to attend a training here or there. I’d take a few notes, but I wasn’t a student of network marketing because money was coming in so easily for me at first. I had a good team going with my family up in New York, and I was really coasting. Then 1986 begins, and it all starts going away.
Now, I was hearing The Millionaire Training differently. It’s no longer that everybody wants the products and shows up to your meetings. Now, it’s actual work. It was then that I began to understand the concept of employing yourself and how you can have diseases of attitude and procrastination. It’s knowing you have to call and talk to 10 people every day, not eight. Ten.
If you’ve only spoken to eight people in a day, you have to get back out there that night and talk to two more people. You aren’t going to sleep anyway, because you can’t sleep because you just feel terrible that you didn’t do your job. It was those messages from the tapes that helped me when adversity came.
Finally, around 1991, things began to turn around for Herbalife after launching a couple of new products. To think if I hadn’t done what Mark and Larry said and put my money in the bank, I wouldn’t have been able to stick it out with Herbalife and probably would have left as so many did in 1986. People then were so mad and dropped out because they couldn’t make a living, but what they failed to mention was Larry telling them to save their money.
They went out and bought a new house or a new car, so when Herbalife wasn’t paying as much, they had to find something else. So through those lean years, I was able to make it through by taking out a $100 or so if I was short one month on my expenses. At this time, I was still living on retail and wholesale, but I had that money in the bank to get me through when everybody else had to get a job. Thankfully, I lived modestly and didn’t have any debt. I was driving the same car I had started with, which at that point had 150,000 miles on it. My royalty checks went down from $5,000 a month to $300 a month.
Because I lived within my means, I was able to keep going, and when things finally turned around in 1991, I qualified for the Global Expansion Team. Then in 1995, I made the President’s Team. All this happened within three-and-a-half years. During this time, I was often reminded of Larry’s analogy about our mind being a projector. He would often talk about that if the film in our projector is negative, failure is going to show up, so what are you thinking about? On the days when I was down and out, I would remind myself of that fact.
I knew this story so well from listening to his tapes over and over that I could recite it in my mind. I would tell myself I had a negative film projector going and I needed to change the film. I would snap myself out of it, and then go out to the marketplace or wherever with a smile on my face. I’d ask people how they were doing and hand out catalogs in front of the H.E.B. grocery story in Austin. Some days it would be pouring rain, and I would still be out there talking to people, even if I got no response. I just knew I had to speak with 10 people each day, and I kept doing it.
There’s no question that Larry’s concept of talking with 10 people a day was vital. I was not going to let my team or myself have a negative film projector or a disease of attitude. Things are going to grow no matter what, so you have to eliminate what’s bad. To take care of a rose bush, you have to water it, and you don’t allow the weeds of negativity to grow. Those concepts have never left me, even 37 years later.
I relied so much on Larry’s teachings during this time of transition at Herbalife. Larry would often come to Dallas to lead trainings, and if I knew he was coming, I would drive my old beat-up car three-and-a-half hours to listen to a two-hour training. I’d take my notes, drive back to Austin, and hold my own meeting where maybe three people would show up, but I would just go after it and teach those three people.
In August of 1991, I was still only making $300 a month, and I kept thinking, “When is it going to happen for me? I don’t know how much longer I can go on like this.” That was my time of questioning, but I never applied for another job or went on any interviews. I never missed a meeting. I presented every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. I even did a session on Christmas Eve because it fell on a Saturday. Everyone on my team was telling me we can’t do a meeting then because it’s Christmas Eve, and I simply said to them, “No, it’s not Christmas Eve. It’s Saturday, and we do meetings Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday.”
It was a huge turning point for me because I ended up recruiting a Supervisor from that meeting. He ended up qualifying with a volume of 7,500 in December, and we go to attend the annual party at Mark Hughes’s house. It ended up being my biggest month of the year, where I had a personal volume of almost $15,000.
Finally, one year later, I make the Millionaire Team and a few years after that The President’s Team.
Larry ended up leaving Herbalife in December of 1992, and I’ll never forget his last training in Dallas. It was probably one of the greatest meetings he’s ever done in his life. I still remember where it was. I have a picture from that day, walking across that stage. January 1993 was challenging for my team and me. Larry was our trainer, and it was challenging to lose him, but we kept moving forward just the way he would have wanted us to. Every time someone enrolled on my team, I would give them The Millionaire Training even though they weren’t included in the distributor kits anymore.
Larry’s legacy continues to live on even in my own family. My son is an Herbalife distributor as well and is currently working on his third diamond and has a massive organization underneath him. I taught him all of Larry’s concepts because they are timeless and will never go away. Initially, my son didn’t know what he wanted to do with his life. He tried different jobs, working as a waiter, folding shirts in a retail store, taking some college courses, that kind of thing. I didn’t want to push him into Herbalife. Finally, he came to me and told me he wanted to do Herbalife and opened up his own nutrition club in February 2008 using the principles from Larry that I taught him. Within three-and-a-half years he had made the President’s Team.
I have compassion for those getting started in network marketing today. It’s easy to get bombarded with social media and technology. It can be a tremendous blessing, but it can be a curse as well. It can be hard to stay focused when you’re continually sending tweets or scrolling through pictures on your cell phone.
When I began in this industry, there wasn’t as much confusion. We had to visit with 10 people and tell them about the products. We knew we needed to do an opportunity meeting every Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and run ads in the newspaper. It was a job where we knew we had to fulfill what’s in this box to get the job done. It wasn’t hard to do those things, but it was mentally taxing because you had to see people you didn’t know and talk to people on the phone. It was a simpler life we led, and there wasn’t as much confusion.
Today it’s more challenging because there are so many things competing for your attention. There are so many things bombarding the minds of the youth, and I think they’re stressed. I don’t think they need to be on social media for three or four hours a day when they could go out and communicate with people in person. I would encourage young people that if they find something, they are passionate about, don’t quit. Just stay with it.
If I had given up during the seven years of famine at Herbalife, where would I be today? You have to remain persistent and consistent, be relentless, and stay for the long haul. I think so many people today want fast results, but you have to be willing to endure the time because time brings wisdom. You’re not going to get everything your first year, second year, or even third year. However, if you work with the same company for 30 years at the end of it, you’ll have a chunk of change for your retirement if you can work hard, like what you’re doing, and believe in the product you have.
I’m thankful for the principles and concepts Larry gave me because it would have been impossible for me to endure 1991 if it wasn’t for him. My Dad was a laborer, he didn’t have any wisdom about owning a business, and I didn’t have any mentors. The Millionaire Training gave me strength. I needed somebody reliable with the belief to encourage me along, and Larry gave me that. Larry believed that all of us could do it and was relentless in his drive to go, go, go. I needed that because I have a strong personality. I can’t have somebody up there on stage telling me to just kind of hang in there. I appreciate Larry’s strength and power. I’m sure there were times during the 1980s when he went home and wondered what the crap was going on, but I never once saw him waver in his form or attitude. If he had, we would have smelt it and felt it.
During Herbalife’s fights with the F.T.C. in 2016 and all the things we had to go through, I knew I needed to be a pillar of strength for my team. I was always checking in on my people asking how everybody was doing because that’s what Larry did.
He always said, “Listen, you aren’t going to find out who you are in times of greatness when everything is good.” I knew during those hard times of adversity and problems I was showing my team either strength or insecurity, and I chose strength. I have such gratitude to Larry and the fortitude he showed us during his 13 years at Herbalife. It changed all our lives, and it still does. His principles have never left us.