It was 7 p.m. Eastern Time when Joel Brizzi answered his phone. A little late, it seemed, to be in the office, but Brizzi was finishing up the paperwork on a new Viridian customer account that one of his Associates had brought him. This particular account included 500 individual meters.
An impressive number, especially when Brizzi himself joined Viridian in March.
Brizzi is used to late nights. Besides attending to matters in his water business – he has been selling spring water, filtration systems and customer refilling stations for 21 years – he also sits on the East Rutherford, N.J., City Council as a police commissioner, a post he’s held for 15 years in his “spare time.”
While it may seem daunting, Brizzi said his multiple hats help keep him close to Jamie, his wife of 20 years.
“She’s my partner in the water business and in Viridian,” Brizzi said.
They have two children: 19-year-old Raquel, who is attending Penn State, and Joel Taylor, or J.T., who is 17.
The decision to join Viridian was a “no-brainer,” Brizzi said. While attending a presentation on the energy company, Brizzi was quickly impressed with what he heard.
“I signed up on the spot,” he said.
Brizzi has long believed in environmentally conscious products, but he said the service that Viridian provides adds an element that many are unable to offer.
“When you have a green product that’s cheaper, it’s almost never heard of,” Brizzi said.
Now that he’s an Associate, Brizzi said he’s going “90 miles per hour,” looking for individuals to get involved in the company.
“I probably average four or five new Associates a day,” Brizzi said. “You have to come out of the starting blocks and go.”
The biggest concern he sees when talking with potential customers is skepticism. He said many people have spent so many years on public utilities that deregulation sounds impossible. With a little homework, he said an Associate can pass right over that hurdle.
“You have to educate people,” Brizzi said. “You have to get trained on how to explain the product and how to build your business.”
When recruiting new Associates, Brizzi said he focuses first on the product instead of the organizational levels of Viridian.
“I am selling green energy,” Brizzi said. “It’s cheaper than the utility and there’s no contract.”
In the end, however, Brizzi said it’s not about selling a product, but about helping people realize the money they can save and the difference it can make in the environment.
“With the way the economy is going, I don’t want to ask people to buy anything,” Brizzi said, “and we don’t.”
When Brizzi was asked about his WHY for joining Viridian, he immediately spoke of his family.
“I have a child in college,” Brizzi said. “I would like to pay for her education. People say it’s all about the money; it’s not the money, it’s what the money buys.”
Brizzi said his biggest motivator is the man who comes to his house every day in a blue striped uniform and puts bills into his mailbox.
While Brizzi is seeing some amazing growth in his business, he admits that the life of a Viridian Associate is not for everyone.
“You have to stay with it,” Brizzi said. “Most people don’t want to do what it takes to get to this level. They want what’s at the end of the rainbow without doing what it takes to get there.”
Still, the path is there, Brizzi said, for anyone to begin finding customers and see the growth that they want.
“I think we have great leadership,” Brizzi said of Viridian, “and we have strategic growth.”
And, of course, one great product.
The Rev. Edmund Nadolny, of the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Connecticut, has tried all sorts of fundraisers.
When a man named Ted knocked on Nadolny’s door and told him about Viridian, Nadolny knew he had found something special.
“It took me about 13 seconds; I saw it right away,” Nadolny said.
He quickly became a Viridian Associate and customer, seeing significant savings on the first bill he received on Viridian’s service. . After realizing the potential Viridian offers, Nadolny took advantage of Viridian’s nonprofit organization fundraising program by starting the Father Nadolny Good News Fund which aims to offers savings to customers while supporting his cause..
Nadolny oversees a program that helps families host, and potentially adopt, orphan children from the Ukraine. The children range in age from 7 to 11 and come from a variety of tough backgrounds. Transportation, education and basic living costs quickly add up, but Nadolny tries to supplement the expense as much as possible through the fund. . Unlike other fundraisers Nadolny has used, the Viridian program is residual and allows Nadolny to focus on what he loves: helping people.
“This is the best fundraiser we’ve ever had,” Nadolny said.
Since joining Viridian in March, Nadolny has raised $3,000 for the Good News Fund, not to mention the money he saves on his monthly energy bill.
“We’re not selling anything,” Nadolny said. “We’re saving money. I’ve got a pharmacy saving $600.”
Through the Viridian program, customers indicate a nonprofit organization to fund while paying their energy bills. The individual bill doesn’t cost a penny more, but $2 each month is given to help the indicated program, like Nadolny’s Good News Fund. With each month’s bill, a customer can save money, raise money for nonprofits and help the environment through Viridian’s use of renewable energy.
Nadolny has been very active in seeking potential Associates, whom he refers to as “disciples.” Through their combined efforts, a large network has developed. Currently, the Good News Fund receives funds from hundreds of individuals, a number that is constantly growing. Nadolny said he has often lent the initial startup fee to potential disciples who, Nadolny asserts confidently, always manage to quickly sign up their first 15 customers and make back the investment
“If you don’t have the money, I’ll lend you the money,” Nadolny said.
Beyond the fundraising business, Nadolny is quick to point out to individuals the cost-saving and environmental benefits of making the switch to Viridian. One couple approached Nadolny for marriage counseling, to which he happily obliged. He didn’t charge for counsel; he simply told the couple they would need to sign up for Viridian.
After joining Viridian, Nadolny said he was told by other Associates that the elderly are often reluctant to become Viridian customers. His experience has suggested quite the contrary, in that many of his best customers are elderly couples and individuals who live on a fixed income.
“I’m not too bright,” Nadolny said, “but just do the math. You’re helping the environment and you’re saving money.”
With more people hearing about Viridian every day, the Good News Fund continues to grow, opening doors for Nadolny’s work and making more opportunities available to the children the program assists. As for Nadolny, he looks forward to helping more and more people save money, and finding host families to care for the children.
“The beautiful part is that there’s no end to it,” Nadolny said. “It’s better than a 401K, you’re not going to lose it.”
In November, Viridian will officially launch the global arm of our Sustainability Initiative in beautiful Brazil, as part of our pledge to leave the world a better place than we found it.
By now, you know how fast Viridian has been growing. It is through this growth that we are able to begin to realize our mission to not only save people money but, more significantly, to make a difference in our communities and the world. I’m sure you’ve seen it first-hand as you’ve shown your friends and neighbors how they can help the environment and save money on their utility bills. You may have even helped out at one of our sustainability events or lead similar efforts in your own community. Many people are beginning to catch the vision of our Sustainability Initiative, which, in short, is a pledge to leave the world a better place than we found it. This is exciting stuff.
With Growth Comes Responsibility
As you know, the fight for renewable energy is a global one, so wouldn’t it be nice to feel connected to those abroad who share the same goals? While Hawaiian shirt Friday might be a good start, we want to do something more. Something meaningful, something long-lasting, something that could change the world. What if we could travel the planet and demonstrate our commitment to protecting and preserving it, leaving behind a contribution instead of a footprint? Since the formation of this company, this has been a dream of ours, and now in our first year in operation we are about to realize it.
First Global Adventure In Brazil this Fall
While we may not be able to cover the entire Earth at once, we can get to all of it eventually. Our plan is to visit one continent each year for the next seven years. To kick off the 7 Continents in 7 Years program, our first stop will be in South America this fall! As part of a forest replantation project, we will do our part to ensure the rainforests of the Amazon continue to flourish. We want you to come along and reap the rewards of hard work and leadership along with us! All who achieve the rank of Executive Director by November are invited to attend, with a guest. . As it would be a shame to visit Brazil without strolling on the white sandy beaches of the Copa Cabana, witnessing the panoramic grandeur of the Iguazu Falls or standing under the iconic Christ the Redeemer statue overlooking Rio…we have made arrangements to include those activities (and more) as part of the trip.
Because of you, Viridian is able to provide the resources necessary to truly make the world a better place. Whether your contribution to our Sustainability Initiative is through your own renewable energy choices, your education of others or through participation in our first global excursion, you are a part of a company with a global mission. You are helping people realize that helping the environment isn’t as difficult or expensive as they may have originally thought. You are inspiring others and teaching them how to pitch in. We are excited to see what new opportunities will be afforded to us as we continue to expand. Stay tuned!
Congratulations to our Associates who advanced in rank this past month! We are happy for your success.
89 Advancing to Marketing Associate
11 Advancing to Marketing Manager
- Elizabeth C Beisel R.D. LLC
- ISCSS-Henry Westendarp
- Joel Brizzi
- Ledvia Masferrer
- Mary Shakro
- Michael Grillo
- Michael Masselli
- Michael Moore
- Rev. Edmund Nadolny
- William Cherniske
4 Advancing to Marketing Executive
- Jimmy Boucher
- Lawrence Grillo
- Nancy Shariff
- Ted Terhune
1 Advancing to Marketing Professional
1 Advancing to Associate Director
Don't miss the biggest and best corporate event of the year at PowerUP! 2010: The 1st Annual National Viridian Network Convention. It's time to celebrate, learn from each other and kick up the voltage. You won't want to miss the speakers, training, networking, business building and good eats we have planned for you in Atlantic City. See you there!
A little over a year ago, we set a goal to provide people the opportunity to do well financially, while doing good in the world. What a difference a year makes. We have met and exceeded many of our objectives. Quite simply, we are making a difference. And we’ve only just begun.
This success, and the future of Viridian, is only possible because of people like you—people who make a lasting impact for good in this world. You have a tremendous opportunity to change lives, for good. I loved working with many of you in Sandy Hook, NJ to clean up the beach and I look forward to seeing all of you Oct. 15 – 17 in Atlantic City, NJ for our first national convention. Mark your calendars. This will be a perfect opportunity to look back at our growth and together look forward at all the exciting things to come.
Michael Fallquist, Viridian CEO
Editor’s Note:Each month we will bring you tips, insights and best practices from our Associate Leadership Council – some of the most passionate and dedicated people in the business. This month we hear from Jenna Marzullo, a Connecticut Associate.
The Alchemist-Paulo Coelho
"Why go into something to test the waters? Go into it to makes waves"
- Michael Nolan
Nobody can top my Dad's Chicken Marsala
One thing I would never give up:
My cell phone
One thing I could do without:
My cell phone
I've heard the word “Pioneer” many times in my life and, typically, images of America's most famed pioneers like Thomas Edison or Martin Luther King Jr. would immediately come to mind. These are people who take the lead and participate in something new. They are the visionaries of the world who open up new areas and prepare the way for others to follow. They identify roadblocks and seek solutions no one has thought of.
Recently, at our CT Re-Launch meeting, we spoke of the word Pioneer in the context of Viridian and it has taken on a totally different meaning for me. I am often asked by new Associates who are excited to begin their business, “What is your best advice or strategy?” I've noticed that there is a common attitude that is present in those experiencing success in Viridian. They have the Pioneer Spirit!
A pioneer by definition is one who ventures into unknown or unclaimed territory or one who opens up new areas of thought, research, or development. Isn't that exactly what we are all doing in Viridian? We are willing to take that “leap of faith” for the chance of success. We hold hope and vision for a brighter financial future, time freedom or a more sustainable planet for future generations. We find a solid motivating purpose (our WHY) to risk it all, and work toward our goal tirelessly. We persevere and have committed 110% to spreading Viridian's vision and sharing the opportunity with others. We endure rebukes from those who do not understand, and setbacks at every corner, but still we press forward for the sake of our goal. These are all of the same qualities that legendary visionaries have, and it's what we all do every day. Most importantly, however, is that as Pioneers we never give up, it's just not in our makeup. It doesn't matter if we experience success in the first month or if it takes years, we keep moving forward with excitement for what is around the next corner!
So congratulations to all of you who are taking part in this revolutionary opportunity called Viridian and helping to create a future that most have only dreamed of! Whether it's your first week in Viridian or if your one-year anniversary is soon approaching, BE PROUD BECAUSE YOU ARE A TRUE PIONEER!!