You look great! What are you doing? I hesitate because I know the look I will get when I tell them the program I am using. It is not so much about the program,but rather the industry in which the program operates. I wish I had background music it would sound something like this “dun, dun duuuuhhhhhh” network marketing. YES, I said it, shame on me, network marketing that shameful and gross sleezy sales business where everyone has a motive and everyone is out to get you for something.
I have been having this conversation with a few other people in the same industry, different businesses but business model is that of network marketing. What we all find sad is that the few people who have come before us, and who might be among us in our particular companies, who choose to take the hard, blunt, and down right rude approach, are the ones who create havoc and make the road for those of us who work with integrity challenging. This can be said and true for almost every industry not just network marketing. However, it just seems that when I answer the question, you look great what are you doing? And I reply, xyz company, I get eye rolls, and INSTANT objections thrown at me because they fear that I have become … one of them. The person who tries to ruthlessly recruit them. That person who will only talk about and be obsessed with the company I work with. They fear that I am going to think less of them because they are not doing what I am doing. Yes, part of this is on them, their fears or perceptions. However, those fears and perceptions would not be there if they had not been conditioned to guard themselves and put a wall up. They would not be there had the reps who work their business, had done so with honesty, integrity and kept in mind that the people they are approaching are human too.
Is this what this industry has turned into? People shaming others into doing something they do not want to do? Not having a life outside of our companies and thinking everyone needs to think like us or they are wrong? That we in network marketing see everyone who walks around us do so with a dollar sign on their forehead? If that is the case, then that is sad. Now, it is my job not only to share with those who are interested, but also at the same time make sure that people who work with me know that I am not out to scam them or force them to do something they do not want to do. Now I have to convince who ever I tell what company I work with, that I am not like that creepy sales person who manipulated them into having a party, or harassed their friends after they purchased, to have a party of their own.
I am in network marketing and when I get pitched by reps from other companies it disgusts me at some of the ways people go about it. Seriously, this is just perpetuating the problem people. It is making network marketing reps look about as reliable and honest as politicians. #sorrynotsorry. Some people I will not even tell I am in a network marketing company. Some people do not know that I use products from a network marketing company. Why? Because they did not ask and therefore I can easily assess that they are not interested at this time to know. When I do get asked, I talk with discretion. I do not automatically consider it an invitation to pitch and sell. I merely talk about it from my perspective and what I like about it like any other casual topic of conversation. If no other questions are asked, I move on to other topics. If and when I do get asked more questions, and I do pitch to others, I make it very clear to each and every person whom I am talking to about the product, exactly what my intentions are for them. I am very clear and upfront about why I think that they should partake in the either the products or the business I am in. I am not saying that my way is the best way, but I am saying that I am working with integrity and making sure that people know, like and trust what my motives are and know like and trust me as a person.
Over the last few weeks I have had the unfortunate pleasure of being involved with network marketers that taught me and enforced my belief of how I should NEVER talk to either some one who is just curious, a potential customer, or a down-line member. This is what I took away from the interactions I came across.
- If someone says no, the answer is no. Maybe not forever, but for the time being. My rule of thumb is that once a person has expressed to me that they are not interested, then I drop it. I move on to other topics. I am not in the business of convincing because then the person is not working or doing from a place of true motivation they will eventually fall off the wagon because it is not their passion. The end result usually ends up either ruining a friendship or burning a bridge for future relations.
- I do not force my family and friends to do what I am doing. If they are curious about it, then sure I share with them. In the end however, family and friends, unless they are truly as excited and into it as I am, are and will be your most challenging people to work with, and again, why ruin a relationship over a business transaction.
- When asking questions about another reps company do not make them feel like they made a poor choice with the company they chose first. It is classless and tasteless to say things that cause your potential recruit or customer to feel like crap for choosing a different company. For example, the other day, I was approached by a rep from another company, she did everything in her power to make me feel as if I did not do my research and that the company I chose, because it was not her’s, was not superior. Every person is going to work with a company that aligns with them. Would you make your friend or acquaintance feel badly about shopping at Walmart over Target or for buying Nike over New Balance? No, hopefully you would not…So don’t do it to another network marketer or their company. You never know when they will be looking for a new company or looking to work for a company that melds well with the one they are with. You might just have burned a very lucrative bridge.
- If you do have a down-line, when or if they choose to leave, don’t make them feel like crap for doing so. I mean really, they have worked or maybe not worked, hard for you to get your commissions and help you grow your team. Respect them for the time they spent and respect their decision to move on. Keep in mind that your down-line rep might like the product, but might not be interested, or in a place to work the business. You never know when they may feel in alignment or if their path recrosses. If you treat them like crap and make them feel like they betrayed you or let you down, you might just lose them not only as a customer, but also as a consultant if they choose to start up again. They will look elsewhere because they will remember how you treated them.
- When you are working with someone, always give them an out. For example: When I signed on two new clients to the company that I am working with, I let them know, you do not have to sell the products, you can just be a loyal customer. You may however, get asked what you are doing because you will start changing and people are going to be curious as to what you are using. If you want to sign them up under you I would be happy to share with you at that time how the opportunity works. If you want to share with them what you are doing, but you do not want to deal with having a business, then I would be very grateful if you just referred them to me and I can chat with them about what they want their journey to be. This way, they can feel comfortable, that you will either guide them on the journey for the whole aspect of the program soup to nuts or or just guide them as a customer. This way as a customer and or as a business partner or they will feel comfortable and good about referring people to you. This has been super successful for me, and my clients appreciate that I share this with them. They get bombarded with enough sales and stuff to deal with, I should not be one of the things that causes them stress, I should be the solution, not the problem.
I am tired of having to defend my choices in how and why I run the type of business I do. I want to be proud of my chosen profession and be seen by my peers and those who know me as someone who works with integrity. My hope is that as representatives of network marketing companies, we can ban together to create a new era where people do not smell us coming a mile a way and run and hide when they see us coming out of fear. Rather I want them to say YES come over here tell me about what you have going on, I want to know more. It would be nice if we as network marketers are seen as leaders in our industries and we come together to uplift and support each other on this journey to health, wellness, financial freedom, more for our families etc. Rather than treating each other as rivals, we treat each other as team mates and commend each other for our achievements and feel confident if we do not have what someone is looking for that we can refer them to someone who has what they need. You never know, the favor might be returned. In this way we can build relationships and grow our businesses to their fullest potential.