Today, I’d like to talk to you about how to support your MLM team.
This is one of those “weird” subjects in our industry. Some people think you should do everything for your team. You should help them make their name’s list, call them daily, do affirmations with them, hang out with them every weekend, coddle them, answer every question they have, and solve every problem they encounter.
Others think you should sign people up, slap them on the ass, wish them good luck, and send them on their way. I’d like to think there is a “middle ground” between those two extremes.
Before I share my advice with you about how to support your MLM team, remember this.
Your goal in network marketing is to develop residual income so you have time freedom. It is not to create a business or job that relies on you 24/7. Remember that.
You should begin with the end in mind. Create your business, right from the beginning, to make it look like what you want to achieve when you have a big team and big residual income.
Some Tough Love
Here are some tough lessons I’ve learned through real world experience in this amazing industry during the past 20+ years.
All the time you spend trying to help non-committed, non-serious team members is TIME WASTED. That might sound harsh, but your time is valuable. You are a CEO. You can’t drag anyone across the finish line or make anyone successful in the business. Trust me, I’ve tried. If you want success more for someone than they want it for themselves, you are wasting your time working with them, and you will end up disappointed.
Next, if you are at everyone’s beck and call 24/7, this business is miserable. If everyone on the team depends on you to help them and answer their questions, you have a never-ending job. You will be overworked and underpaid.
Do you really want hundreds, thousands, or tens of thousands of people contacting you every day to help them? I doubt it. I don’t. What you want is INDEPENDENT people. You want people dependent on a system, not you.
People and personalities do not duplicate. Write that down and remember it. What duplicates is SYSTEMS. If you ever want the time freedom that is available in this industry, you must use systems and tools to REPLACE you in the business as quickly as possible.
Finally, no one succeeds or fails because of you. Each person is their own CEO and is responsible for their own motivation and success. You can’t blame yourself if others fail or quit and you can’t take credit if one of your team members succeed. All you can do is lead by example and work with the willing.
Knowing these things upfront will save you a lot of wasted time, resentment, and disappointment.
How to Support Your MLM Team
Rather than tell you how to support your MLM Team, I’ll explain what I do to support my team, just to give you some perspective. Feel free to model what I do or even put your own spin on it.
On a side note, if you are blessed to have a successful sponsor or upline, with tools and systems in place, you are one of the fortunate few. This is quite rare in our industry. If you don’t have these things available, you’ll need to put them in place for your team.
I am a big believer in systems, tools, and resources. I learned this valuable lesson in the Army. Therefore, I’ve created these things for my team to use to free up my time and work smart. Here’s what I offer in a nutshell.
We have a team Facebook group. This is where we do recognition, share important updates, announcements, answer business related questions, and have our community. The company also provides a product testimonial group, which is quite useful.
Team Training Website
We have a team training website with a list of our tools and resources. There is a formal getting started training on the website. The website covers scripts, ways to get leads, the getting started training, our systems, and much more.
I do a weekly webinar every Tuesday night for my team. We do product training, business training, and recognition. Different leaders on my team lead different parts of the webinar. I delegate as much as possible. I am the facilitator and host. We also have a product training webinar on Thursday nights, done by a group of leaders in our team.
We do live team events every 90 to 120 days in different parts of the country. Remember, we are an event driven business. Events are the glue that keeps our business together.
We have lots of training videos for our team. I post these videos on our team training website and in our Facebook group. Many leaders on the team create their own tutorial videos, which makes everyone’s life easier.
Getting Started Training
Our getting started training is standardized and is located on our team training website. Everyone is encouraged to complete the steps. We also have a 120+ page success guide in PDF format for our team.
I’ve created a free leads program, a drop card system, postcard system, Craigslist system, and coffee system for our team members to use. I update these systems from time-to-time as needed.
I do one-on-one coaching occasionally, but not often. I used to be at everyone’s beck and call. Now I am quite selective about who I give my one-on-one time to. Why? I act like a CEO. I spend my time where it is deserved. Whenever possible, I train and support everyone in a GROUP setting because it allows me to work smart.
First off, I’m a bit old school. I’m not the nurturing or hand holding type. I’m an old Army guy and my mindset is basically “prove yourself” if you want my time. I’ve outlined what needs to be done in our training and systems, but if you aren’t coachable or willing to leverage those resources, I’m not going to spend my one-on-one time with you.
I know that most people are just visiting the business. They will be in and out of the business in less than 90-days. It’s sad but true. I’ve grown to accept this.
I reserve my one-on-one time for people who have been here a while, proved themselves, and earned my time. That might sound like tough love. It is. But, it’s smart.
I want everyone on my team to use the systems, tools, and resources we have in place for them. I want them to find their own answers, take initiative for their own business, and empower their people. If they’ve gone through all of the resources we have available, and they still can’t find what they are searching for, I’m happy to help them.
For a long time, this industry has operated like an adult baby-sitting service. I simply do not subscribe to that mindset. I think of each person as their own CEO. They are responsible for their own motivation and success.
To end this section, I will make one important point. I treat everyone well regardless of their commitment or performance. I am nice and pleasant with everyone. I appreciate everyone on my team. I love my customers, wholesale buyers, part-timers, some-timers, and leaders. I just choose to work smart.
The Most Important Thing I Do
The most important thing I do to support my MLM Team is lead by example. I show them what is possible in the business by actively recruiting and retailing and earning a six-figure income. Whether they choose to follow my leadership and example is up to them. I just want to be the tip of the spear.
What Others Are Saying
Stop trying to motivate them and inspire them instead. One of the most common questions I get is “How do I motivate my team?” Before you learn that Braveheart speech, realize that I think there is a better way and that is to inspire your team with YOUR action. The best thing you can do for YOUR team is rank advance and show them that the system works.
~ Ray Higdon
I love Ray’s advice. Instead of hand holding, babysitting, and motivating others, show them what is possible by putting in the work and getting the results. By doing so, the right people will step up and want to follow your lead.
Good leaders are great at recognition—for accomplishments both great and small! I’ve heard the saying: “people will work harder for praises than raises!” I know that to be true for myself! I once got a handwritten card from our company president! It felt so good to know that she was watching what I was doing, and I wanted to be sure I stayed on her radar so I posted it in my office, and it motivated me to take daily action in becoming successful! That card meant more to me than anything else I have earned in the business! The great news for the company? It was free! But what it meant to me? It was priceless.
Remember that– Recognition can be free—but the results it produces are priceless!
Sarah is spot on here. Recognition is such a simple and easy thing to do. In most cases, it doesn’t cost you anything either. Show genuine appreciation whenever possible. Make people feel important, even for the littlest of things.
Keep your business simple. You want to make it easy enough for an 8 year old to be successful. Train your team members exactly what they should do in the simplest way possible. Guide them through each step of the process to achieve their goals.
Avoid anything negative when talking with your team members. You don’t want to poison your team or affect their success with any negative talk.
Use stories as much as possible to help your team members create a vision and build their belief.
This is some great advice from Lynn. Keep the business simple. Most people try to reinvent the wheel and over complicate things. Negative up and positive down. People already have their own problems. They don’t need to know about yours.
As a sponsor within your network marketing company, you should see yourself as a coach and mentor to your downline. You should treat them as a team and encourage them to support each other and work together to help motivate everyone. Although you are their upline, you should never treat them as though they are below you. You are all working towards the same goals, just at different paces. If you are able to create a feeling of togetherness, your team will feel well-supported and able to go for it.
Kerry gets it. No one joined MLM to have another boss. Be nice to your team. Follow the Golden Rule: treat others the way you want to be treated.
In conclusion, these are my best tips on how to support your MLM Team. At the end of the day, it’s important for you to have systems, resources, and tools for your team to use. You also need to create culture and community. You do that with events.
You must decide how much time you want to spend with each person and how you want to operate your business. There is not a right or wrong answer. It’s your business. Run it the way you want, but realize that everything you do has pros and cons.
What are your thoughts? What do you do to support your MLM Team? Leave a comment below to let me know what you think. I look forward to hearing from you.