It’s All About the Network


network by Simon Cockell, on Flickr

Network marketing is a curious creature. I got involved with it through listening to David Wood’s podcasts, and there seem to be different views as to how it operates, or should operate.

In particular, I listened recently to a conversation between David and Michael Clouse. I have to admit, this guy scared the pants off me. In particular, he said that the product didn’t matter much, but the key to making money was to follow the process. The true product of network marketing, he said, was freedom.

In other words, here were his steps to making a good living doing network marketing.

1. Find a good company.
2. Find someone who is making good money, preferably within the same company.
3. Find out what they are doing.
4. Do that.

He talks about the importance of duplicating the process, like a franchisee who has to follow the franchise rules. In network marketing, selling product directly is nice but the real money is in building a network. I heard David interview a lovely young Australian couple who have 21,000 (yes, that’s twenty-one THOUSAND) people in their network. They obviously had no trouble flying to his island in Belize for the week.

This terrifies me.

It’s not that I’m averse to learning best practices, or how to become the best marketer I can be. I’ve always loved Terry O’Reilly’s shows. Fascination with human thought processes runs in my family – my mother was a psychotherapist, and my sister is a neuropsychologist. I love learning this stuff.

Furthermore, people like David Wood tells us that “it’s not about the getting”. Obviously there are ways to help people improve their lives while making a decent living. I very much like the idea of doing something to help people – that by offering people the excellent product I’m working with, I’m helping make their lives better. Furthermore, if we can build a good network together, I can help them by giving them the opportunity to make money.

I can get my mind around all of this. The emphasis on service, on positivity, on helping people have better lives, that all works for me. Improving my own confidence and skills is great. Hey, I’ll manifest stuff with the best of them. I can totally control the universe, right?

It’s when the masks come off and I hear somebody talking about building a machine, that I get all squirrelly. I want to build relationships, to help people, to make the world a better place. All this while also supporting my family and maybe taking the odd trip somewhere. Doesn’t need to be Belize, although that would be nice, too.

I know the couple with thousands of downlines cannot possibly have a relationship with more than a fraction of them. I hope that everyone in that network has a better life as a result of their membership there. I would love to talk with somebody further down the totem pole, to hear what kind of help and support they are getting from their team leaders.

Is the problem one of scale? Or am I just frightened by the responsibility? Is it that darned Lizard Brain again, telling me I’m not worthy of that kind of freedom? Is it the employee mindset, insisting that money must be exchanged for time, or there’s something vaguely wrong with it?

What do you think?

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2 Responses to “It’s All About the Network”

  1. Zohar Says:

    that is why it is easier to have a salary – you can separate the job from the money. Deep down you believe that money is yucky – and not relevant to the important and meaningful aspects of your life. You have brought yourself to a place where you have to confront it — either accept it and find a job with a salary, where you can help people and not connect it to being able to survive financially, or change your attitude towards it and realize that you have to accept the importance of your material needs and put them high in your priorities, and that translates into putting importance on making money. Its an alien concept where we come from. That is why its so hard for you, I believe.

  2. Hadass Eviatar Says:

    Your ability to look inside my head and unerringly pull out the point I am labouring to make never ceases to amaze me. I’m so glad I have you on my side ;-).

    Thanks for hosting my boy. I hope he is done jinxing our family’s vehicles. I wonder if I should warn the English contingent?

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