With a heavy heart, I’m writing this tribute to one of my business heroes: Mark Yarnell. Mark recently passed away (March 2015). He was just 65 years old.
Although I’ve never met Mark in real life, he really impacted my life in a big way: a positive way. I have considered Mark my greatest business mentor for over a decade now. I’ve never been part of his team, or met him in real life, but his philosophies and teachings have changed the way I think about business and network marketing.
I first learned about Mark back in late 2002 or early 2003. I found a copy of his book “Your First Year in Network Marketing” at a local bookstore in Colorado and bought it. Dang, I loved that book. I think I’ve read that book 50 times now.
That book led me to his other training materials. I’ve watched pretty much all of his YouTube videos at least 20 times each. I’ve purchased most of his books, courses and materials. I’ve learned more about network marketing from Mark Yarnell than from anyone else.
Here are a few of Mark’s accolades:
- Member in the network marketing hall of fame
- $20 million plus earner in the industry
- Consultant to many network marketing companies
- Author of several best-selling books to include Your Best Year in Network Marketing and Your First Year in Network Marketing
- He has built teams with more than 300k distributors
- Contributing editor to SUCCESS magazine
- He created the first “university level” course about network marketing at the University of Chicago
- Named “Greatest Networker in the World” by Upline magazine
- And tons of other things!
While those are all amazing achievements, what I admired most about Mark is how straightforward he was about what it takes to succeed in this great industry. He never sugar coated anything. He is the ONLY person I have ever met who says that duplication is a lie and that network marketing is really a numbers game. I’ve found him to be right about that!
Mark was a straight shooter, a man’s man. He had a great personality. I thought he was humorous, intelligent, kind, honest, and genuine. Despite his huge success in our industry, he was still a down to earth guy. He’d help anyone, talk to anyone, and make you feel like he was your friend.
I hope that when I achieve the level of success that he had, I can maintain the same level of humbleness and kindness.
Here are a few of his most popular quotes.
- It’s much easier to give birth to a new distributor than it is to resurrect a dead one.
- Every great MLMer was a lousy MLMer at first.
- It’s entrepreneurial innovation, not organizational duplication that works.
- Unless, as a part-timer, you are approaching at least five to ten prospects per day, you are not serious about succeeding in this business.
- New blood is the lifeblood of any organization.
- Go wide fast!
- Great leaders always innovate, they don’t duplicate.
- A well balanced organization will be made up of a large body of wholesale buyers, many retailing distributors, some part-time business builders, and a few full-time, gung-ho, recruiting maniacs.
- One of the biggest fallacies in MLM is that we should attempt to force creative people to use systems which they don’t like and often can’t copy.
- You need to be recruiting and selling products rather than reading.
- Everyone should be responsible for finding ten legitimate retail customers before building a sizable network organization.
- MLM is about long-term focus, not short-term opportunism.
- Make a five-year commitment and never look at another company no matter how slick some recruiter sounds.
- Whether in a breakaway, a uni-level, a matrix, or a binary plan, the greater the number of personally sponsored distributors, the larger the income.
- Call all the people on you prospect cards every six months until they either sign up or die.
Although Mark is no longer with us physically, his presence and legacy will continue for many, many years. Between the people he has personally mentored, and the people he has helped through his training materials, he will continue to positively impact our great industry for future generations.
I’m going to miss you Mark. You really are the greatest networker of all time. Rest in peace my friend. I’ll do what I can to continue your legacy. And when I meet you in heaven one day, I’d love to have a great chat with you to learn even more of your wisdom!
Mark is survived by his wife, Valerie.