From the DSEF: We’re excited to introduce a new blog series today! We’d like to introduce you to the top executives of some DSEF-supporter direct selling companies. Every few weeks we’ll introduce you to another CEO, and they’ll share their thoughts on Direct Sales, Ethics, Social Good, and why they support the DSEF.
Today we’re thrilled to kick off this series with Dave Wentz, the CEO of USANA Health Sciences, Inc. USANA has been a big supporter of the DSEF for many years, and we’re thrilled to have Dave Wentz share his thoughts with you today. Enjoy!
CEO Spotlight: Dave Wentz, USANA Health Sciences, Inc.
I have the pleasure of serving as the CEO of USANA Health Sciences, Inc. My father, Dr. Myron Wentz, founded USANA in 1992 after years of developing diagnostic tests for infectious diseases at his laboratory, Gull Laboratories. I helped create USANA in the summer of 1992, prior to the formal opening of the company, helping to develop the company “look,” establishing product formulas, and preparing USANA for an impressive and strong debut. Because I’ve been involved with USANA from the very beginning, I’ve had the incredible opportunity to serve in many capacities, including vice president of strategic development, senior vice president, executive vice president, and president.
What did you do before you got involved with your company?
USANA has been, and will always be, an incredibly important and all-encompassing passion of mine. Before USANA, I earned a bachelor’s degree in bioengineering from the University of California San Diego. I feel very lucky to have been able to help form USANA from its very early stages into the half a billion dollar global company it is today.
What do you love about your company?
What really stands out for me is the integrity of the products and the integrity of the people, both our employees and our incredible Associates worldwide, that are all part of USANA. Without the high standards we place on ourselves, in terms of both product quality and the way in which we conduct business, we couldn’t be as successful as we are. I also love our continual innovations. Our scientists and our scientific partnerships elevate our products and the science behind them to a whole new level. I love this aspect of our business, and it truly distinguishes us from others in the market.
What makes your sales force amazing?
I am continually in awe of our home-based business owners. The work they do every day to share USANA’s message of true health and true wealth with friends, family, and everyone they meet is inspiring. The best part for me is that working together with our Associates, USANA has the ability to change other people’s lives for the better. USANA Associates truly care for one another, and they also care about people they’ve never met. They do this work because they believe in the message, and they believe in the products. Seeing them in action gives me even more motivation to continue to make USANA a better company. We really are a family.
Ethics is an integral part of DSA membership. How do you ensure your company maintains the highest level of ethics?
On a company level, USANA holds its employees to a very high standard of integrity. We have systems in place that allow for employees to report incidences of misconduct anonymously, so they can be honest without any fear of being reprimanded or creating any type of backlash from managers or others who may be involved. Our compliance and regulatory departments make sure that everything we say in any of our publications, videos, and even on stage is both factual and within all lawful regulations. As for our Associates, we hold them to high standards as well. We regularly inform our Associates regarding what they can and cannot say about our products and how they can lawfully run their businesses. Any Associate found to be acting outside the rules may be subject to a business termination.
Social good is another essential element of direct sales. What kind of social good campaigns does your company participate in or run?
USANA and Children’s Hunger Fund have a long-standing partnership that has led to more than $12 million in monetary donations and Usanimals (Children’s Vitamin) donations to those in need. All proceeds from The Healthy Home, the best-selling book my father and I wrote, went to Children’s Hunger Fund as well.
This year, we decided to expand this partnership and our giving in general by establishing the USANA True Health Foundation. This foundation will continue to support Children’s Hunger Fund while also collecting funds to help meet immediate needs, such as those created from natural disasters. Additionally, the foundation will support organizations like HealthCorps, which provides much needed health information and education to young people.
Every year at our International Convention in Salt Lake City, Utah, we have several fundraising activities throughout the four-day event. We have a 5K run/walk, and also raise money during USANAfest, a party with entertainment, food, and games. This year, the funds will go to support the USANA True Health Foundation.
Your company is a Direct Selling Education Foundation supporter. Why do you think the DSEF is important?
When my father decided to start USANA Health Sciences, we had so many options on how we could sell our products. We very well could have sold our products to stores. We could have gone the conventional route. But we believe the direct selling model has the distinct ability to benefit more people in more ways than simply selling a commodity to consumers. There are countless success stories in USANA, with Associates taking initiative in their own lives and, in the process, creating lives they could only dream of in the nine-to-five world. People need to know that direct selling can change your life, not only through financial freedom, but through time freedom; personal development; the joys of family and friends and teamwork; and most of all, creating a meaningful life with intention and purpose. By supporting the DSEF, we support spreading the message that direct selling can positively impact people and communities.
Thank you, Dave, for sharing your inspiring story with us. We are grateful for the support of companies like USANA, that help us to spread the message of ethics, entrepreneurship and integrity around the world. We appreciate you!
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