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It Works!: The Evolution of a Dream


After celebrating a serious milestone, It Works! seems to the longer term.

Final 12 months, It Works! celebrated 20 years of enterprise—or as Founder and Chairman of the Board, Mark Pentecost prefers to consider it, twenty years of serving to folks obtain their desires.

Based | 2001

Headquarters | Palmetto, Florida

Founders | Mark & Cindy Pentecost

Merchandise | Magnificence, Diet, Private Care

It’s human nature to outline accomplishment as gross sales or income. But how I’d outline success trying again over the previous 20 years is what number of lives we’ve modified.

—Mark Pentecost / Founder & Chairman of the Board

Mark and his spouse, Cindy, attribute their success to being others-focused, having based It Works! as a car to alter lives. All through the tenure of their management, this philosophy has served them properly. From bootstrapping the corporate in its early days to proudly owning a personal island, the Pentecosts have embodied the American Dream by way of their expertise with It Works!.

Now, after 21 years of enterprise, the corporate and product line proceed to evolve, however the basis of It Works! stays the identical. “I’m so happy with what we’ve constructed over the past 20 years, however what I’m most happy with is what number of lives we’ve been capable of influence within the course of,” mentioned Chief Subject Officer, Kami Pentecost. “I get goosebumps once I take into consideration what number of extra households will get to attain their desires over the following 20 years with the chance we’ve created.”

Humble Beginnings

Though It Works! was based as a way to alter lives, initially, the Pentecosts have been those who wanted a change. Within the Nineteen Nineties, Mark taught highschool math and coached basketball whereas Cindy stayed residence with the youngsters and ran a daycare. As a rising household residing on restricted earnings, they sought to earn an additional $500 a month to make ends meet. Direct gross sales offered the reply.

Mark and Cindy joined a preferred community advertising firm and shortly achieved success—incomes the best rank potential. However the alternative didn’t final. “We have been lucky sufficient to be Prime Ten in a really profitable firm,” defined Mark. “However they didn’t sustain with the merchandise, and it went away. We mentioned if we ever do that once more, we’re going to personal the corporate. We would like management of our future.”

Pentecost household

Via their trade connections, a novel product finally crossed their path. In 2001, armed with their well-known Skinny Wrap, a physique contouring wrap, and the intent of serving others, the Pentecosts launched their very own household enterprise: It Works!. However even with an efficient product, the corporate skilled a rocky begin.

“Individuals see the place we’re at present—the workplace, the power—they usually don’t understand there was a time when our CFO requested how lengthy he ought to enable me to maintain placing cash into It Works!,” Mark remembered. “However it’s arduous to beat somebody who by no means provides up.”

His tenacity paid off. Earlier than lengthy, the availability of Wraps couldn’t meet the demand. Mark chuckled, “We referred to as it The Nice Wrap Scarcity. In enterprise, there are all the time going to be ups and downs. The primary 20 years wasn’t all the time easy crusing. We hit obstacles, however we discovered a method with a terrific workforce to determine the way to get by way of it collectively and to seek out the ‘win’.”

Defining Success

Within the years since, It Works! has expanded into 4 distinct product classes that present a holistic strategy to well-being—from power and vitamin, to magnificence and weight administration. And thru founding the It Works! Offers Again Basis in 2014, the Pentecosts helped generate a tidal wave of philanthropic change that continues to swell. Final 12 months, the It Works! Offers Again Basis united with the Pentecost Basis pledged $1 million to charity in commemoration of the corporate’s twentieth anniversary.

“It’s human nature to outline accomplishment as gross sales or income,” Mark noticed. “But how I’d outline success trying again over the previous 20 years is what number of lives we’ve modified. Every workforce member is a life, a household. Now we have many multi-generational companies inside It Works!. Others have moved on however come again years later to say they have been in a position to make use of our core values and ideas of debt freedom to stay higher lives. To me, that’s success.”

Constructing on the Dream

Between their family-focused firm tradition and first-to-market product choices, the Pentecosts laid a strong groundwork for It Works! from the start—a basis on which they’ve been steadily constructing ever since. Seeking to their subsequent 20 years, the It Works! workforce is concentrated on rising extra strategically than ever, significantly in a post-pandemic market threatened by recession.

Ever the optimist, Mark and his workforce solely considered these challenges as studying alternatives. “The pandemic pressured folks to judge who they work for, after they work and the way they work,” he mentioned. “In a person-to-person trade, the pandemic made us understand we wanted to enhance our coaching and onboarding nearly. It was powerful, but it surely made us stronger. We already knew the significance of a mobile-first strategy. The pandemic merely made us velocity up these timelines.”

The It Works! company workforce continues to embrace a digital strategy to direct gross sales whereas selling human connection. Creating revolutionary methods for the sphere to work their enterprise from their telephones stays a high precedence, together with the introduction of a brand new platform, Affect Professionals, which provides their leaders a spot to study and develop.

“We equip them with instruments to develop anyplace, anytime. We empower our workforce for social promoting and influencing, as a result of our groups are getting youthful and connection occurs in another way now,” Mark defined. “Affect Professionals is an instance of how we mix coaching, schooling from a few of the best minds in at present’s world and a spot for influencers to share nice concepts. Change is tough, but it surely’s so necessary to evolve. The times of your grandma’s in-home lounge get together are over. However the fundamentals of It Works! are the identical: we deal with folks properly, and we present appreciation and recognition. It’s only a completely different supply—by way of a cell app or a social channel. Typically it’s a hybrid strategy, however connection is fixed.”

For instance, the company workforce initially deliberate for the 2022 It Works! Convention to stay solely digital. As time progressed, they realized the significance of getting leaders collectively in individual and shortly pivoted. After the principle Convention ran nearly, the workforce took the occasion on the highway throughout seven states, assembly with hundreds of workforce members in individual—in addition to over 10,000 nearly.

“What we’ve completed in the previous couple of years is about ourselves as much as be forward of the developments, with merchandise, branding, and advertising instruments, to be prepared for what’s subsequent,” Kindsey Pentecost, Chief Advertising Officer, shared. “Now we have a dynamic workforce that is ready to transfer shortly in all of our markets, right here and overseas.”

Intentional and Worldwide

Within the early days of It Works!, sources have been at a minimal and hiring competitively was tough. Because the enterprise shortly scaled, fixed product improvement, discipline coaching, market launches and occasions have been the collective priorities. However Mark says one factor he’s discovered from the final 21 years is the significance of slowing down sufficient to be intentional.

, Worldwide President David Vanderveen and Founder Mark Pentecost

“We’re now targeted on constructing a ‘Energy Staff’ in each division,” he defined. “Now we have distinctive expertise that has grown with us, and now we have superb expertise that we’re bringing in. We’re in search of our Company Staff to characterize our Subject Staff demographically. We’re thoughtfully placing collectively departments which can be one of the best of one of the best in our trade. Our aim is to alter much more lives.”

The “Energy Staff” hiring technique excites Mark, who believes it is going to assist the corporate proceed to scale with unparalleled high quality, significantly as development continues internationally. With merchandise in a number of recession-proof classes, Worldwide President David Vanderveen agreed. “It Works! has laid a outstanding basis for development internationally. Navigating the pandemic gave us large alternatives to enhance service ranges for social promoting and distant coaching whereas discovering new methods to work. I’m extremely enthusiastic about what we’re doing and the potential for quantum leaps that we’re beginning to expertise in worldwide markets.”

Dedicated to Profitable

Studying from the previous and evolving with the current has helped place It Works! for a brilliant future—however Mark of all folks is aware of it gained’t all the time be simple. “Once you obtain some success in life, folks say, ‘You’re so fortunate.’ However ‘fortunate’ is grit. ‘Fortunate’ is coronary heart. It’s important to preserve pushing by way of the powerful instances to achieve the opposite facet.”

For the Pentecosts, the direct gross sales trade offered the platform for fulfillment that they wanted all these years in the past. “I’m actually happy with this trade,” Mark shared. “It nonetheless provides alternative to folks irrespective of their background, schooling or demographic. There isn’t a ceiling. That’s what it did for my household; we’re merchandise of this trade. We would have liked a car that might work for us if we labored arduous. To pay that ahead has been a blessing, as a result of that’s why we constructed It Works!—to assist others.”

And after greater than twenty years in enterprise, It Works! is simply getting began. “The world has modified, and now we have felt it in each area, together with our channel,” mentioned Chief Gross sales Officer Meredith Tieszen. “It Works! targeted the final 20 years on our tradition, discipline leaders and offering a terrific alternative. We’re ready for the following 20 years and past.”

All the time dreaming massive desires for the longer term, Mark agreed. “We entered 2022 with a brand new form of power and momentum, each at residence in the US and in our worldwide markets. We discovered rather a lot by way of the pandemic about the way to enhance our instruments. We’re constructing our Energy Staff. These alternatives are solely making It Works! stronger. Collectively, we’re extra dedicated to profitable than ever earlier than!”


From the Could 2022 situation of Direct Promoting Information journal.

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