Born: c. 1916 hot Wells, Texas Died: November 22, 2001 Dallas, Texas American business woman

mar Kay Ash offered her maintain in straight sales to produce her own multimillion-dollar cosmetics certain and provide women with the chance for advancement.




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mary Kay Wagner Ash believed that "a lady never reveals she age," and also therefore the specific year of her birth is unknown. The is estimated to it is in 1916. She to be born come Edward and also Lula Wagner in warm Wells, Texas, the youngest of four children. Her mother, who had studied to it is in a nurse, functioned long hours controlling a restaurant. Once Mary Kay was 2 or three, her father was ill through tuberculosis (an epidemic of the lungs). As a result, it to be her obligation to clean, cook, and also care for she father when her mom was in ~ work. She excelled in school, yet her family can not afford to send she to college. She married at age seventeen and eventually had three children.


Working mom

throughout a time when couple of married females with families worked outside the home, Ash became an employee of Stanley Home products in Houston, Texas. She carried out demonstration "parties" in ~ which she sold firm products, largely to homemakers choose herself. Energetic and a rapid learner, Ash increased at Stanley come unit manager, a post she held from 1938 to 1952. She additionally spent a year studying at the college of Houston come follow her dream of becoming a doctor, however she gave it up and also returned to sales work.

~ Ash's marriage finished in 1952, she take it a sales task at civilization Gift agency in Dallas, Texas. She began to construct her theory of marketing and also sales, which consisted of offering sales incentives (something that spurs someone to action) to the customer and also the sales force. Ash was intelligent and also hardworking, but, uneven men, females were offered hardly any opportunities for development at the time. Worn down of being passed over because that promotions in favor of the males she had trained, she quit. She planned to create a book about her experience in the job-related force.


Starts she own firm

Instead, in 1963, Ash founded her own agency (with an invest of five thousand dollars) to offer a skin cream come which she had actually purchased the production rights. She named her firm "Beauty by mary

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Kay." Ash was determined to offer career opportunities in her firm to any kind of woman who had actually the energy and creativity required to market Mary Kay cosmetics. Prior to long she had a force of mrs sales representatives that were eager to prove themselves. Ash's second husband had died in 1963, a month prior to her agency was established. Her earliest son helped overview her with the start-up phase of she company. Three years later she married Melville J. Ash, who operated in the all gift business.

Believing that was important to reward tough workers, Ash offered away vacations, jewelry, and also pink Cadillacs to her optimal performers. (By 1994 she had given away 7 thousand car valued at $100 million.) With purposes such together these come shoot for, her salespeople do the company a huge success. Within two years sales neared $1 million. The company's development continued, and brand-new products to be added. Every year due to the fact that 1992 mary Kay Cosmetics make fortune magazine's list of five hundred biggest companies. In addition the firm was provided in a publication entitled The 100 finest Companies to work for in America. It now employs over 475 thousand civilization in over twenty-five countries.




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later years

Ash released her life story, mary Kay, in 1981. It sold over a million copies, and she went on to compose mary Kay on people Management (1984) and also mary Kay—You deserve to Have It all (1995). In 1987 Ash became chairman emeritus that her company (meaning that she would organize the location of chairman even in she retirement). She assisted raise money for cancer research study after her third husband died of the disease. In 1993 she was honored through the dedication of the mary Kay Ash center for Cancer Immunotherapy research at St. Paul Medical facility in Dallas. In 1996 the mary Kay Ash Charitable foundation was started to study cancers the mainly influence women.

mar Kay Ash's health declined after she endured a punch in 1996. She died at she Dallas home on November 22, 2001. She to be a challenging businessperson v a thorough knowledge of marketing and sales. Through her id in women's abilities and her willingness to provide them a chance, she do the dream of a effective career a truth for numerous thousands of ladies worldwide.


For much more Information

Ash, mary Kay. mary Kay: You have the right to Have that All. Rocklin, CA: Prima, 1995.

Stefoff, Rebecca. mary Kay Ash: mary Kay, a Beautiful Business. Ada, OK: Garrett education Corp., 1992.