Whenever I talk about my business with people, I always talk about the relationships you build with others and what an important aspect that is. When I’d started, had you told me that because of this business I would meet people who’d eventually become friends – and two special people who would practically become family – I would’ve said you were crazy. I mean, that’s not what happens in the business world – or at least that’s not what was outlined in my college textbooks at business school, and was certainly not allowed in the Code of Conduct in other business fields I had worked in over the previous decade.
Four and a half years later, though, I see and understand things differently; because of this business I learned how important those relationships really are.
When I started, I lived 600 miles away from the rest of my Venture Sales organization, so it was easy to have that narrow-minded mentality. Two months after starting, I was able to go to my first Rally where I met my LED Pattie Chwalek. From the moment you meet her, you know she is special. She’s warm and welcoming, always making sure everyone is happy and getting the attention they need.
I was nervous walking into such a large room of people not knowing a soul, but she made sure I was introduced to others in my upline and proceeded to check in on me throughout the rest of the evening. I left the Rally that night knowing this was something I definitely wanted to be a part of.
In the months that followed, she continuously built me up, guided me and helped me plan so I could reach my goals. She was also there for me on a personal level, too, which helped me build confidence and learn how to trust others. Thanks to Pattie I never felt alone in this business (even at my first Jubilee she stuck by me so I didn’t go to my breakout sessions alone).
About a year into being with Tupperware, I started working with another Director at Venture, Grace Tapert. Grace had offered to help me and my business out by allowing me to work various vendor events she organized. There I learned how to talk about the business and products intelligently to customers. I also learned how to have fun with the business, thanks to her approach. Grace is another person who constantly builds up everyone around her and recognizes their importance.
Milyne (left), Pattie (left-center), Cheryl Smith (right-center), Grace (right) – Jubilee August 2017
I’m incredibly blessed as I’ve had two mentors who have helped train me – I realize that is a gift that not everyone has been given. In the years to follow, my mentors have become trusted friends.
We’ve been there for each other through personal highs and lows, as well as business ups and downs; from babies being born (my 2-year-old Johnathan is actually named after Pattie’s husband John), to illnesses and spousal upsets; from trip, title or recognition achievements, to team rebuilding, there’s yet to be an event that we’ve missed in one another’s lives. We’re in different life stages and places in our businesses, have different backgrounds, goals and dreams, but we have an incredible bond based on love, trust and friendship – with a touch of pushing one another’s buttons, because what good relationship doesn’t have that?
I’ve often heard that “Tupperware is the vehicle that helps bring people together,”
…and I cannot think of a truer statement; as had it not been for Tupperware I would’ve never met these two amazing women. Two Leadership Summits ago Pattie challenged me to be at the next one with her, and this past February I was able to do just that after being promoted to Director in November 2014. I was able to learn and enjoy time with her, as well as my travel buddy and roomie Grace, and we all created more memories together.
Pattie (right), Milyne (center), Grace (right) – celebrating our completion of our first half marathon to support the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society May 2016
In the years to come I look forward to growing that friendship more through Tupperware events, road trips, Girls’ Nights out and other memorable adventures we come up with. I love what I do because of the people and what they’ve brought into my life. Everyone should experience the chance to build relationships like I have with Pattie and Grace. Tupperware may originally have been all about the bowl, but in my mind, it’s all about the people.
Milyne Gaden, Manager.