Nothing for Free

There, I said it. Publicly too.

I don’t do anything for free. I refuse too. I don’t have too. I have learned my value, the value of my skills, the value of my ability, the value of who I am and what I have to offer, and it all boils down to my personal worth, and yes, that worth comes in the form of money. I mean it, I do not do anything work-wise for free. I don’t give away my talent, my time, or my treasure without being reimbursed.

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Yea, maybe. But I don’t think so. I call it reality. And some folks need a reality check, but that’s another writing for another time. I would not ever go into an office and work 8-5p for no money. EVER. Nor would you. Nor would anyone we know, that’s just not how it’s done.


So why am I doing that with my Paparazzi Accessories team? Why am I hosting amazing training, giving away incredibly valuable advice, giving my time and my immeasurable talent to those who are not paying me back? Why am I mentoring and working to inspire those who are not paying my bills?  Why? Why have I allowed this to happen?

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At this point you likely think I am conceded and full of myself because I have described myself as talented, that’s ok, that’s your problem not mine because I KNOW I am talented. I know I am a skilled sales woman who can turn numbers easily. I know I am a dynamite teacher who knows her stuff and knows how to share it with others in all the ways they will respond to the education. I know that I am highly educated with a diverse and deep background in several fields. I know that I am marketable and wanted for many things. I know that I am a hard worker who has earned every inch of the battlefield I’ve gained along the way in life. I know that I am worthy and deserving. And I know what salary I deserve, and what salary I won’t accept.

[If you don’t know those things about yourself it’s time for you to find out what they are and then take great pride in them. Perhaps I’ll write another on how to do that? I’ll tuck that away for later.]


So knowing and being able to articulate all of this, the question remains “Ericka, WHY are you giving away your time, talent, and treasure for free to people who are NOT paying you?”

Seriously. Why? What is going on girl? You would never, ever do this, what’s up?

Frankly I don’t have an answer to that question that I can write in a public forum like this, you wanna know, ask me offline and I’ll tell ya.


I do know however that it stops now. It actually stopped a week ago when the realization hit me that I was NOT being smart with myself and it was time to change. So I have changed.

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This is written directly to my team– I am talented, I am valuable, I have skills that you do not have, I have a great many things to offer you, to teach you, to show you. BUT you don’t get any of that skill or talent until you are paying me for all of it, until you are paying ME for what I give to you.  And team, you pay me by ordering. That’s exactly what it boils down to– you pay me by ordering.

You wanna ask me a million and one questions all day long every day, GREAT, please do, you should be asking them, that’s how you learn and grow, and become an amazing consultant. I WANT you to always, always, always ask questions and to learn as much as you can! But in return for my time and my vast knowledge to answer those questions you owe me payment, and that payment comes in the form of placing orders.

This is a very simple arrangement, really. But the problem likely lies in that up til now I have not been able to articulate this arrangement to you. The fault lies with me. I have not told you the truth, I have not equipped you to understand how this arrangement works and the part that you play in it. I have made it a one-sided set up and I know I am to blame. So, change is here. The relationship will no longer be one-sided. Each of us will carry our respective loads. I will continue to be your teacher, trainer, and mentor, and you will pay me.


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I have given you all that I have. I hold NOTHING back. I have answered every question you’ve asked. I’ve found the things you need. I have created countless videos, documents, photos, and more for you. I host a weekly training night. I host in person trainings. I have spoken with you on the phone weekly. I have showed you step by step how to do things. I have re-answered questions the second, third, or fifth time you’ve asked them. I have set you up for success. I have encouraged you on the bad days, inspired you on the good. And celebrated every victory you’ve achieved. I’ve rewarded you for hard work, for dedication, for commitment. I’ve made it fun to be a part of my team.

Have you done your part in paying me for my time, talent, gifts, and training? If you answer no to that question it’s time to make some changes on your end, just like I had to make some on mine. Remember, you pay me through your orders. That is the nature of the direct sales mentor/mentee relationship.


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I am not angry. You should know that. I am not angry at you. How can I be when I am the one who didn’t explain this relationship, this business arrangement? I didn’t tell you what was expected of you in order to pay me for the services I offer. Anger has no part in this. What’s done is done and now we will change.  Now you have an understanding of the business agreement and from here on out things will be different and even better than ever before.

You will be paying a dedicated leader who desperately wants you to succeed. You will be giving salary to one who is always in your corner, always wants the best for you. And when I am paid I will turn out even better work than ever before, because imagine if you will– when you are at your job do you do your best work before or after your supervisor give you a raise? After. Always. Money talks, money makes you productive, money makes you want to do more, work harder, be better, give more. Trust me, paying me will make me even better than before.


I encourage you– keep asking, keep watching my training, attend every meeting I host, make sure we have our weekly phone calls, keep coming to me! I LOVE IT more than I can tell you. All my life I have wanted to be a teacher, an inspiration and because of you and Paparazzi Accessories I am that. I have achieved my dreams through you and this business and I cannot wait to see where that dream carries me.


I am excited to see you explain this relationship to your teams too because YOU are valuable, talented, and worthy of payment and deserve to be paid for what YOU bring to the table. We’ve got this Team. We’ve always had this. And I am grateful that I can be 100% honest with you and tell you all of this.


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