When I first started network marketing, I was completely unprepared. I was probably not your ideal candidate. My sponsor gave me an expectation that in six months, I would have a full-time income and be able to quit my job. It didn’t happen. Probably wasn’t my sponsor’s fault. Like a lot of people – I approached MLM like I was buying a lottery ticket. I thought everyone would be signing up people and putting in my organization. That I’d just have to make runs to the bank every week to deposit my huge checks.

But – that’s not what happened. I approached it like a hobby. Maybe mention to a friend or unsuspecting relative, but no real effort. I just thought that you signed up, and that was it for life. Clueless would be a good description of my start in network marketing I had no distributors and just a few customers after my first year.

Fortunately, I stayed in the business. Not because I had vision or persistence. I stayed in the business because I really wanted this to work. I had dreams, big dreams – and working a 40 hour a week J.O.B. was not going to do it for me.

I have to admit, I was frustrated, and didn’t feel good about myself and had many second thought about the business.

I may have taken MLM more seriously if my sponsor had given me different expectations. I really thought it was going to be easy. But, what if he had said something like: “Erik you know nothing about the people business. You studied Technology and music in school – not people. So it is probably going to take you a while to learn how to do this business, but I know you can learn. You learned how to drive a car, you learned high-level technology, you learned how to play piano, so you certainly can learn the skills of how to do this business.

“So let’s get started now. For the first few months, I just want you to use the products and get some product experience while you are learning. You are going to have to attend some of the meetings and the trainings. And maybe set a few appointments so that you can see me present the business. You really don’t have to worry if the people at the appointments join or not. I just want you to see the process.

I’d like you to develop a personal growth plan. You should try to spend an hour a day either reading a book or listening to a tape the will help you develop or strengthen your goal setting, time management and communication skills. Then, after about three months, we will be ready to get your business started. We will launch your new business then, when you have finished reading these books on goals and attitude.”

MLM is an honest to goodness incredible business model. However, it takes approaching it like a business – not a lottery ticket or hobby.

I recommend we give each distributor a basic three month plan and outlook. Then support them in those three months to ensure you end up with a great new successful distributor. Three months of personal development and training will go a long way to making your new distributor a long term success.