Stacking The Odds In Our Favor
Our presentation didn’t stop there. We would present the options you would have in business today. How costly is it to start your own business? Buy a franchise? Become a doctor or a lawyer? Then we would show how the odds are stacked against an individual since 90% of all small businesses fail in the first 5 years. Next we would examine the option of living off investment income, showing the discouraging fact that in order to generate $3,000 a month in interest, half a million dollars would need to be invested!
“Well, by now,” we’d say, “it’s obvious that there’s only one way to make it, to survive, to be free, independent and successful. That is to get involved with our network marketing program! Why, the cost is minimal to get started. You could be part time and begin sponsoring others and help them learn to sponsor others. You develop a network that pays you residual income for life.”
To really make it stick, we’d ask people what they would spend all the extra money on that they would be making with our company. Pictures of new houses, private schools, boats and other recreational vehicles, safaris and cruises, and savings accounts with further entice involvement. I even heard of some organizations where the men had their wives parade around in designer clothes, mink coats and expensive jewelry to get the women excited.
The rest of the presentation was a smorgasbord of dreams and fantasies showing that, if you sponsor 5 people and they each sponsor 5 and they do the same, pretty soon you have thousands upon thousands in your downline and you’re making big bucks.
As I think back on how we would motivate people toward greed, the scripture in Proverbs 15:2 burns in my heart:
The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly, but the mouth of fools pours for foolishness.
What impressive presentations do not say is that a very small percentage of people who get involved in MLM ever make any substantial money. Fewer than 20% ever really make a profit in MLM. This means that there are an awful lot of people losing money for every one who makes some!
Pushing The Right Buttons
We built our empire in an opportunity meeting format. It was chock full of testimonials about how great the products were, how the product save the person’s life, and how easy it was to make thousands without hardly any work at all. Recently I got a letter in the mail with the same message as our slideshow.
Dear fellow entrepreneur,
Do you know what residual income is? I didn’t until two and a half years ago. At that time we were broke! My husband hurt his back and only had a ninth grade education, so it was hard for him to find a job. I was taught you had to go to school, get a job, slave for 30 years and hope for the best.
In September of 1992, we began working a home based business. I was extremely skeptical. Nonetheless, we worked hard, met a lot of people, had a lot of fun and made a lot of money. Last Christmas we went on a month long vacation to the Caribbean. When we returned, there was a check in the mailbox for over $9,000. That is residual income! Today we live in a Street of Dreams home on 10 acres. We drive the cars of our choice. We have all the toys.
Two days before receiving that letter I got the following fax:
We have recently discovered (by complete accident) what is the most incredible opportunity we have ever seen. We have made a lot of money in two tremendous businesses, but never, not ever, have we seen a more powerful and quicker way to make an incredible sum of money. If you would like to make an excess of $10,000 in the next 2 to 4 weeks, please call me immediately. PS my associate and good friend made $116,000 his very first month! We’re going to take this to the top and a lot of very good people are going along with us! Call me ASAP!
Can you see the same buttons being pushed? Can you see how being committed to an employer and being content with the income that you have seems a stupid, narrow, weak attitude, that of a loser rather than a winner?
In my early years of involvement in financial services, the coach used to tell us that if we made $50,000 to $100,000 a year and produced a big organization with a lot of sales, we would be somebody, we be winners! If we weren’t excited, motivated, making lots of contacts, sales, and money, we would be nobody, we’d be losers!
It grieves my heart to see how these organizations and their inspirational leaders mold us into thinking that success in their program is the ultimate goal for which to live. Hebrews 13:5 says:
Let your conduct be without covetousness and be content with such things as you have. For He himself said I will never leave you nor forsake you.
For years I missed that scripture in my Bible.