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Forecast sunny for Barbie Bassett; Former WLBT chief meteorologist shares her business success story

Published 12:32 am Sunday, May 18, 2014

Three years ago, Barbie Bassett, the former chief meteorologist for WLBT, said she felt like a change was going to happen in her life — and while on a trip, her intuition was right.
“I was in Memphis, and someone gave me their business card on Rodan+Fields,” said Bassett, and from the encounter she became an independent business consultant for the skin care company and has since grown her business to the point that last week she said she was able to “retire her husband.”
On Thursday night, Bassett met with a group of more than 30 women in Vicksburg to share her success story, talk about the products that Rodan+Fields offers clients and share business opportunities available through the company.
Bassett said she began as an independent business consultant with Rodan+Fields, in 2011, but not before carefully researching the company. She said she also sought out advice from her mother who had worked as a direct selling consultant for Mary Kay.
“Mother looked at me and said ‘this could be the biggest thing that could happen to you and your family,’” and with that said along with the support of her husband, Bassett started her business.
Rodan+Fields was founded in 2002 by dermatologists Dr. Katie Rodan and Dr. Kathy Fields, the same doctors who created Proactiv Solution, an acne medication that has gone global and “changed how we treat teenage acne,” said Bassett.
Rodan+Fields was first marketed in high-end department stores, but in 2008, the dermatologists made the decision to remove their skin care product from the retail business and market it through direct sales, Bassett said.
In 2010, just two short years after making the bold decision to pull their product from retail, the company won many Direct Selling Association awards, Bassett said, including the Rising Star for dedication in achieving a high standard of excellence in business and operations.
Bassett, who is also a best-selling author and former Mrs. Mississippi, is now making a six-figure income as an independent consultant for the company, five times more than the salary she was making as a meteorologist at the TV station, she said.
“Skin care is the number one defense against aging,” said Bassett, and according to the website www.economist.com, statistics show that the global beauty industry, which includes skincare products, is growing due to the number of richer, aging baby-boomers, the increased discretionary income in the West and the growing middle classes in developing countries.
Bassett said that Rodan+Fields is looking to expand its market outside the U.S. this year, and analysts at Goldman Sachs estimate that the beauty industry has grown to $24 billion and is growing faster than the economies of the industrialized world at a rate of up to seven percent.
“In the U.S. alone, $3.2 billion is spent annually on anti-aging skin care products,” said Bassett, “and that number is expected to double by 2016.”
Bassett said that working her business with Rodan+Fields has given her the flexibility to be more available to her children and work on her third book.
She said she still reports the weather from time to time for WLBT but is now able to work “whenever she wants to,” she said.
Rodan+Fields is all web based, said Bassett — there is no inventory or deliveries required of consultants.
“All you need is an Internet connection and a cell phone to have your own business,” she said.
Bassett said profits from her business have already secured the financial future of her grandchildren.
Bassett, along with other consultants present Thursday night, said they also like the idea of having a plan B in today’s economy.
“Plan B’s are extremely important in this day and age,” said Misty Jabour, a local Rodan+Fields independent business consultant.
Jabour said the extra income she was making as a consultant allowed her to continue to provide for her children’s expenses after her salary was cut.
Being a consultant and owning your own business can be empowering for women, said Bassett.
“It can allow women to take control of their own lives while still being a mother. It’s something you can do on the ball field, in the park and even in the carpool line,” she said.
“It’s a business on your own terms.”
Rodan+Fields is not exclusive to women — men can also become business consultants. In fact, Bassett said she is scheduled to meet with Deuce McAllister on Friday.