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Famous Black Female Entrepreneur: Gloria Mayfield Banks

Angela has a degree in Electrical Engineering and Technology from Old Dominion University. She's worked in the Power Industry for 20 years.

Gloria accepting one of her many awards at Seminar.

Gloria accepting one of her many awards at Seminar.

Who Is Gloria Mayfield Banks?

Gloria Mayfield Banks is an Elite Executive National Sales Director for Mary Kay Cosmetics, a position held by only four other women worldwide. She is the only African American to hold this position. She is a multi-millionaire with over $7 Million in commissions who has earned eight Pink Cadillacs, countless travel opportunities, jewelry, and many other prizes. She has earned 24 Gold Medals with the company.

She started her Mary Kay career in 1988 to supplement her income. This decision has made such a huge difference in her life as well as the consultants and Sales Directors that work for her, not to mention the customer base that has had the wonderful opportunity of meeting her and doing business with her.

Background on Gloria

Gloria was born in Detroit, Michigan. She now lives in Ellicott City, Maryland. She got her undergraduate degree from Howard University. She went on the get her MBA at Harvard University. Gloria spent 10 years working in Corporate America for companies such as IBM and Polaroid as sales representatives. She was the Assistant Director of Harvard Business School Admissions when she found the Mary Kay opportunity. She was introduced to Mary Kay through a friend. She had just gotten out of an abusive marriage with two small children and wanted to supplement her income. She decided to sign up to sell Mary Kay part-time to make that extra money. Two years later she quit her full-time job to sell Mary Kay full-time. Her family thought she was crazy to leave her job to sell lipstick! Today her business has grown to over $24 million in retail sales with over 6,000 consultants and 6 National Sales Directors working under her. Her highest total commission for one month (so far) has been $96,000. She has been able to put her children through college with zero debt.

Gloria Is Everywhere!

Gloria has been a regular on “The Big Idea” with Danny Deutsch as well as been featured in many publications such as PINK, Black Enterprise, Fortune, Glamour, and Working Woman. She is a great example of a successful female black entrepreneur. She is the subject of a case study at Harvard Business School called the “Gloria Hilliard Mayfield at Mary Kay Cosmetics” case study. She travels the country speaking on self-esteem, sales training, and motivation.

Gloria's Tips for Being Successful in Business

  • Become a people magnet—Be on purpose with drawing people to you. Look presentable, smile with your teeth showing, and be pleasant to talk to. Make other people want to be around you. Work on your appearance. Update your hairstyle, your makeup, and your wardrobe, and be outstanding.
  • Make short-term, clear, strategic goals backed by big thinking—Everyone has dreams. Most of them are big dreams. She suggests starting by setting smaller more attainable goals. Make the goals visible by doing a daily to-do list. Set the goals and knock them out one by one. Accomplishing these smaller goals that lead up to your bigger goals and dreams will give you a sense of accomplishment and motivate you to continue toward success.
  • Create a powerful circle of influence—Surround yourself with positive and successful people. She says, “Show me your friends and I will show you your future.” Only take advice from those that you would be willing to trade places with. Do not keep friends or acquaintances that are negative and constantly complaining. It does nothing good for you to be around that. It only makes you negative and prevents you from accomplishing your goals.
  • Continue to learn—Always be a student. Study books, study the internet, and study people.
  • Work the number—It doesn't matter what your product is or what you are trying to sell. You have to put it out there to as many people as possible. If you get rejected, don't take it personally. They are rejecting the product, not you. Get out and try again. You have to continue to put your product out there to as many people as possible to get the best results.

Simply the Best

Gloria Mayfield Banks is an inspiration for all women. She is so energetic and one of the best storytellers I have ever heard. I think that is part of her success as a speaker. She is hilarious and can have the entire room laughing at her in minutes. She still manages to get her point across and you remember it when she tells it. She doesn't hesitate to tell it like it is and will call you out immediately if you are not going down the right path. Her enthusiasm is contagious. As a Mary Kay consultant myself, I get my motivation from Gloria Mayfield Banks. Whenever I am down or not feeling like doing anything with my business, I put on a CD of Gloria. She is simply the best.

Your attitude is everything. Find the joy in what you are doing and work hard to succeed in it.

— Gloria Mayfield Banks

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.


Dani Alicia from Myrtle Beach, SC on March 08, 2013:

@angela p thank you very much and good luck with your writing and your MK business as well! And I keep TimeWise in my bathroom too ;-)

angela p (author) from Richmond, Virginia on March 08, 2013:

madscientist12 - Thank you so much for reading and commenting! It is always great to meet other MK consultants as well as women in the science and engineering field. Welcome to Hubpages and I am sure you will enjoy the experience. I also write online more for hobby than anything else because it does allow me to express myself in many ways. Yes it is amazing of Gloria's accomplishments despite her dyslexia. It shows you that you can do anything if you put your mind to it and not allow things to "paralyze" you. I have yet to hear a speech that she has made that hasn't both had me laughing and making me want to rule the world! She is that motivating to me. I also think she is one of the most beautiful women I have ever seen. Mary Kay does really work. I am not "all that" but I do feel like the product has kept my skin in great condition over the years. I have always tried other products and like other products as well. I write reviews and blog about beauty products more than anything else so I try as many different products as I can to have topics to write on. I always have a set of Timewise in my bathroom because I use it more than anything else on a consistent basis. Good Stuff! Thanks again for stopping by and checking out my tribute to Gloria and good luck with your writing.

Dani Alicia from Myrtle Beach, SC on March 08, 2013:

I had the opportunity to be on a conference call with Gloria and she is truly inspiring and motivating. A lot of people don't know that she is dyslexic. For her to have this infliction and still achieve everything that she has done is amazing. This woman is truly a fighter, and I enjoyed every minute of advice that I got from her. Also, she LOOKS GOOD. Mary Kay really works, lol.

angela p (author) from Richmond, Virginia on February 02, 2012:

Thanks Simone - she is truly an inspiration to me. She is so funny too. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Simone Haruko Smith from San Francisco on February 02, 2012:

Wow, Gloria Mayfield Banks is so cool! What an inspiring woman in the business world. And her tips on being successful in business are fantastic! Thanks for introducing me to her- I'd never heard of Gloria Mayfield Banks before reading this Hub.

angela p (author) from Richmond, Virginia on February 02, 2012:

Lord de Cross - She is smart and beautiful! Thanks for reading and commenting.

Joseph De Cross from New York on February 01, 2012:

Thanks for telling us about Gloria, Her charming smile catches any eye. Only because of you, I know about this amazing lady. Voted up!