A lot can change in a year. Just ask Todd and Christina Perry. As longtime network marketers, this power couple from North Carolina has seen their fair share of opportunities, learning experiences and challenges. And the past 12 months, in particular, have brought many of them—some of which were quite painful.
In November 2013, Todd and Christina, who had joined ViSalus in June 2011 and were 5-Star Ambassadors, decided to leave the company to pursue other interests and opportunities. “When we initially came aboard, we were in a partnership with another couple,” says Christina. “But, it wasn’t a healthy business relationship with them, and we became disillusioned. We made the mistake of listening to negative noise from companies and talking to people we shouldn’t have. And so we left.”
During the months that followed, as Todd and Christina pursued other industry opportunities and tried to focus forward, they couldn’t help but continually look back. With hindsight came feelings of regret.
“In our exit, we felt that our team would really be taken care of,” says Christina, “but what we didn’t anticipate was the pain we had caused our team. This isn’t a traditional business we’re in… it’s a people business. And we realized we had hurt people—people we cared deeply about.”
It’s then when Todd and Christina talked plans of returning to the company. And in September 2014, when the Vi Founders led the management buyout to private ownership in a $143 million transaction, the couple knew that ViSalus was not just their past… but would once again be their future. They returned to ViSalus in November 2014.
“When we learned that the Founders went ‘all in’ and bought back the company, we were really excited about what that meant for the entire Vi Community. Our leaders will be able to make and implement beneficial decisions faster. We can add to our product line and move into more countries at a faster rate. The Vi Founders have our Promoters’ (and Customers’) best interest at heart, and instead of having to continually try and appease public shareholders and Wall Street analysts, they can focus more on actions that will aggressively grow this company. ViSalus’ strong leadership and vision have positioned the company for the third wave of huge success. We want to be a part of making it happen.”
According to Christina, an increasing number of former Vi Promoters also want to be a part of the company’s third wave and are planning to return to ViSalus.
“We’ve talked to a lot of people who want to come back, but they just don’t know how. We hope that by sharing our story, it will open the path so they can feel good about returning. Our lives without ViSalus over the past year taught us that no other company has what we have. Nobody has that synergy and the camaraderie we have. Nobody has our culture and values, our entrepreneurial spirit, and our leadership.”
Todd and Christina have accepted the fact not everybody will be happy about their return.
“For the most part, we are receiving tremendous love and support with our returning; however, some may not understand why we left ViSalus, and we respect their feelings,” says Christina. “But, they should also look within their own selves and acknowledge that everybody makes mistakes. We learned a lot over the last year, and we want people to understand that yes, you’re going to make mistakes. And we own ours. But, sometimes a second chance looks better than the first chance because you learn and grow. And I believe that everybody deserves a second chance.”
Todd and Christina are taking full advantage of their second chance to set things right and rebuild their team.
“In the upcoming months, we plan to dive down into the team we abandoned and work on getting their trust back. I hope we can ignite excitement about all the positive things that will be coming in this third wave for ViSalus. We want to lift our team higher than us and build strong relationships.”
Returning to a company is not easy, but for Todd and Christina, the move felt right, the timing was perfect, and the passion for the Vi mission was still there.
“There’s a famous quote about if you love something, let it go, and then if it comes back to you, it’s yours forever,” says Christina. “We’ve come home, and we’re here to stay.”