This Page is All About Leadership and Due diligence
As John Maxwell likes to say… Everything rises and falls on Leadership
The Secret to Choosing the Right Sponsor for YOU
I was inspired to write this article a few days ago after receiving a call from a young couple named Jason and Audrey who were in search of the “Right Opportunity.” As I sit here writing this article, I don’t know whether they will be joining our team or one of the other GREAT Leaders that I told them they should interview with while doing their due-diligence. I’m certain that within the next few weeks Jason and Audrey will be joining someone’s team and hopefully it will be ours.
Yes, you read that correctly… I told them they should actually interview with other leaders before they decided to jump back into the network marketing industry for their third time. As you might imagine as a result of being one of the 52 contributing authors of the book, “It’s Time… for Network Marketing”, hosting my own radio show (ACES Radio Live) on the subject of “The Home Based Business Industry,” and now one of the authors with “The Network Marketing Magazine” I have people contacting me weekly and sometimes daily asking me to join them in marketing their Company, Product and/or Service. While I’m humbled and honored by all of the calls that I receive, please understand that almost every good leader I know receives the same type of calls every week.
After conversing with Jason and Audrey and listening to them both very carefully for over half an hour I had discovered what they were excited about, what they were worried about and what they hoped to accomplish by starting their own home based business. I invited them to watch a video about our company, product, opportunity, endorsements and the timing. I then offered to send them a free magazine, DVD and sample of our product. Through the course of our conversation I had prequalified them as a good fit for our team and people that I would be willing to invest my time with to ensure their success. As we were wrapping up our conversation, Audrey asked me if there was anyone else with any other companies that I would be willing to recommend for them to interview with. I gladly referred them to a hand full of leaders and mentors that I respect and admire… because of who they are as people at the core level… and also based on the types of companies that Jason and Audrey were interested in looking at.
First of all “KUDOS” to Jason and Audrey, for taking the time to do their due-diligence prior to joining just any company, product or service and for having the intestinal fortitude to ask me for some referrals of leaders that I respect enough for them to interview with. I know that whoever they choose to team up with that they will be well taken care of.
In my personal opinion, I believe that choosing the right sponsor is just as important, if not more important, than choosing the right Company, Product or Service to represent.
If you’re not shopping for the “Right Sponsor,” as well as the “Right Company” it’s unlikely you will enjoy the level of success that you’re looking for, especially if you truly want to become a “Full Time Professional Network Marketer” with the income and lifestyle that goes along with that title.
You might be asking yourself… Why is it so important to have the “Right Sponsor” and / or “Upline Support Team?”
That’s simple… Because the two most important questions anyone should ever be asking themselves before choosing to join any company, product or service in the Network Marketing industry are:
1. Which company, product or service can I get passionate and excited about to join and market?
2. Who should I choose as my sponsor and Upline?
The reason that I believe it’s so important to choose the “Right Sponsor” is because I believe that the Network Marketing Industry is actually an industry of “Relationships” and the real name of the industry should be “Relationship Marketing.” The truth is… in most cases, when you find the “Right Sponsor;” you will also have found the right company, product or service to partner with.
In my humble opinion, one of the main reasons why some people’s first experience with network marketing is a disappointment, is because their first company or opportunity “finds” them. They never get personally plugged into the right mentor or leader within that company who can help them to achieve their goals and make their dreams come true.
Most people never take the time to interview with more than one or two people before they dive in excitement first, wallet second and brain last into an opportunity… only to find out after the fact that they made a mistake because there was no one there to help and support them to build their business.
The profound truth of this fact is because most people buy on emotion and then justify their decision with logic and reason after the fact!
If you pause and ask yourself the two questions above, I can promise you with a relatively high degree of certainty that… the time you invest in performing your due-diligence to find the “Right Sponsor” for YOU, will not only save you money, but also a TON of time and frustration in the long run as you build your business.
Furthermore, I believe that having the “Right Mentor” can almost guarantee your success!!!
My friend Brian Matthews likes to say: most people’s first company and/or experience in the network marketing industry “finds” them. They stumble into it in perhaps a friend’s, relative’s or co-worker’s kitchen or living room where this friend, relative or co-worker shared their excitement about a product, service or company with them. The potential new distributor was impressed enough by what they saw – it appealed to them. In other words, the new person was “found” by the company, product or service they wound up representing; the new person was not actually “looking” for it. And if this newly-found distributor sponsors someone, it’s most often by accident, not by design. You see, without the support of an experienced sponsor and team that uses a proven system, it will be hit-and-miss…not the predictable, sustainable, ever-increasing incomes they would desire. The truth be told, in many cases, they joined as a distributor only to help a friend, or perhaps to get the best price available on the product or service, but NOT with an experienced partner, team and plan.
Unfortunately, this is the reason why so many distributors never make any “real” money in their first venture in network marketing. The truth is, many new distributors who sponsor with well-meaning but inexperienced people or those who do not have the success of their team members foremost in their hearts, minds, and actions never earn a bonus check at all. It’s because a huge percentage of the distributors with most companies are simply wholesale buyers of the products and/or services, and do not actively or systematically build a business at all. Most of them only became a distributor in order to be able to get the product or service at the wholesale or distributor price.
Some of these people will at some point actually share the opportunity with a handful of their friends and family members within their circle of influence… but if they do not get a positive response a few times, many begin to realize that it is called “Net-WORK” Marketing (and not “Net-LOAF” Marketing!) for a reason; it does take effort and time to build a business, and sponsoring with a caring, experienced professional who will mentor you to success will shortcut that process for you. Unfortunately, many people, if they feel “rejected” when someone whose opinion mattered to them didn’t join their team, that’s when they make a conscious decision to settle for the life they have and remain as wholesale customers while others just give up and quit altogether.
I know a leader who has been in the industry for a long time who refers to the distributors fitting the description outlined above, as “Some Timers” meaning that they don’t work their business… Full Time, or Part Time, or even Spare Time but rather Some Times — meaning they go to work when you happen to drop by their house and ask them why they have those products on their kitchen sink (or in their bathroom, their refrigerator, etc.). They tell you why they love their company, products or service, and you join their company because you like the products, too.
Personally, that analogy strikes me as disrespectful; I know that some people just need more TLC and encouragement than others, and that’s where a good leader, who inspires people to success instead of insulting them, can give them the knowledge, tools and coaching they need to take their business to the next level and become a success.
Before I go any further, please allow me to make one thing perfectly clear and please forgive me if this sounds harsh but… The ONLY way that ANYONE can ever truly fail in the Network Marketing Industry is to QUIT!!!
Ultimately, the ONLY person responsible for our success or failure at anything we do in life is the reflection staring back at us in the mirror.
However, having the “Right Mentor” can make all the difference in the world as to whether a person is willing to quit or give up on their dreams. Great mentors inspire us with their actions and their deeds as well as their words of encouragement. They are there when we need a friend, and also when we need a reality check.
My friend Tom Chenault begin_of_the_skype_highlighting end_of_the_skype_highlighting who hosts the “Home Based Business Radio Show” has been a good friend and mentor of mine for many years now. One of the numerous things that Tom has taught me… which actually stuck with me over the years, is that: “A good leader can recognize talent in a person and inspire that person to become much more than they ever thought possible of themselves by never giving up on them and helping them when they need a helping hand.”
To which he was quick to clarify… “Do not misunderstand the difference between a hand up and a hand out.”
Sometime between the 4th and 6th century BC, the ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu (the founder of Taoism) coined the proverb “If you give a man a fish you feed him for a day; if you teach a man to fish you feed him for life.”
PLEASE, DO NOT misunderstand the message I’m trying to convey, and/or take it out of context. I am not saying to stay clear of inexperienced or untrained distributors, or that they are bad people… quite the contrary, most of them are good people who saw the possibilities of being free and most have a dream when they get started.
Unfortunately, the choice they made of whom to sponsor with (or their choice of company to get involved with) was more than likely by accident rather than by design. You can save yourself stress, time, energy and money by designing your future and putting everything in your favor by choosing your sponsor wisely – someone who can help you to become successful in building a business that generates real income for you.
Here are some facts that I’ve learned over the years of being involved in this fantastic industry called Network Marketing.
1. Many companies (and this includes Network Marketing companies) that go out of business will do so within the first few years they’re in business. Meaning that if you get involved with the wrong sponsor and/or wrong company you will be wasting your precious time.
2. The majority of people who get involved in the industry quit just before they start making any “real” money. Most people are not quite as committed or consistent as we’d all like them to be!
3. The people that make money are part of a successful team and get plugged into great mentors on a daily (or minimum weekly) basis.
4. People that stay in the industry and become successful ultimately value their people and the relationships they forge more than they value money. They strive to cultivate the character traits of what leadership guru John Maxwell calls a true “Servant Leader.”
Zig Ziglar said it best with his timeless quote: “If you help enough other people get what they want, you will get what you want.”
5. Successful mentors provide ongoing training to their team members. They treat every member of that team with the same kindness, friendliness, dignity and respect as if they were their top leader on their frontline.
6. Successful people go to their local weekly meetings. There are at least three reasons for this:
a. Share in the fellowship of other like-minded people.
b. Bring prospects to see the presentation.
c. Learn from the leaders in the local group.
As my friend Brian says: “If you’re having a bad week, you need the meeting; if you’re having a good week, the meeting needs you.”
7. If a person truly wants to be successful in the network marketing industry, what they need to do is find the “Right Mentor,” submit their ego, and do the things that mentor whom they have chosen guides them to do… That is what mentors, coaches and systems are for. You do not want to try to reinvent the wheel!
8. Most importantly… they make the COMMITMENT to give it at least a year without giving up on Their Dream! One of my favorite mentors (Jeff Olson) defines COMMITMENT this way: “Commitment is defined as… Doing the thing that you said you were going to do long after the mood you said it in has past.”
That’s why the person you choose as your sponsor and mentor is so important!
If YOU truly want to be successful in the network marketing industry, you want to stack all the odds in your favor by partnering with experience. Just think about it… If you wanted to train to become an airplane pilot, would you choose to learn from someone who just barely figured out the basics in a flight simulator – yesterday? Would even you go up in a plane with them? Of course not! It would make more sense to entrust your life and limb to someone who’s had years of experience, who can and will help you learn the critical skills, knowledge and maneuvers. Similarly, why would you go with a sponsor or team who are attempting to teach you how to build a successful business, when they have never done it before themselves? You want to entrust your life’s goals, dreams and aspirations to someone who knows exactly how to help you reach them, because they’ve done it before. In my twenty plus years I spent in the Army as a helicopter instructor pilot and Army officer I learned a very valuable lesson: “You can’t teach what you don’t know!” Consequently, the strongest form of leadership is leadership by example, the one we know as: “Been there, done that, got the T-Shirt.”
The Bottom Line Is This…
Do you want to entrust your ability to create the future you want up to just anyone? How do you know which company you want to represent? Is that a question that you would rather entrust to a seasoned veteran, or just anyone in just any company who happens to “choose” you? Do you have a mentor whom you have interviewed, bonded with, and who you look forward to spending time getting to know better and attending leadership retreats with at resorts around the world?
Let’s face it… Choosing the “Right Sponsor” and the “Right Company” is just too IMPORTANT to leave to chance! After all, when in your formal education or some other point in your life have you ever taken a course on any of the following?
1. How to recognize a company that is About to Go Under?
2. How to recognize a company that is A Stagnate Giant?
3. How to recognize a company that is Rock Solid and Still Experiencing Growth?
4. How to recognize a company that is Just Entering Momentum and About to Explode Offering Phenomenal Opportunity for Everyone?
This is why you need to invest the time to interview the “Right Mentor” for YOU.
This person will be a person that you connect and bond with. This person will have taken the time to get to know you and understands your wants, your needs, your desires and your dreams. This person will have the experience that will enable them to help ensure your success.
If you’ve been paying attention as you’ve been reading this article, you will have noticed that I have been using the word YOU a lot throughout the article. That’s because YOU are the one that is in total control of your destiny and the person YOU choose as the “Right Sponsor” for YOU could be the most important decision you will make this year or even in your lifetime.
Time is our ONLY irreplaceable asset we have in the universe. Why waste it with people that have not taken the time to bond with you? Or people whom you’re not sure if they necessarily have YOUR best interests at heart? Find someone who you feel has those important “Servant Leader” qualities, and who will invest in you to help you unlock your potential and help you become all that you can be!
John Maxwell says: “No one cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.” Personally, I believe that it’s a leader’s moral duty to care for and inspire their people… because second only to time, people and the relationships that we share with them are what define us as individuals and represent our greatest assets in life.
I encourage you to look inside of your heart and ask yourself if you’re truly happy with the life you have, or if you’re willing to step outside of your comfort zone, take a small leap of faith, and achieve a lifestyle that most people only dream about!
Remember, Success Is A Choice—What are you going to choose?