On The Level

Have You Got It?

What do successful network marketers have that others lack? Here are nine essential qualities you need to succeed in MLM:

1. Vision. What do you want to accomplish in your MLM business? Be specific. Instead of saying, "I want to surpass my previous salary sometime this year," say, "I want to earn $4,000 per month by December of this year."

2. A burning desire to succeed. Desire is the internal engine that propels you toward your goals. Fuel your desire by reviewing your goals every morning and just before you go to sleep at night. Using all your senses, visualize yourself achieving your goals. If your goal is to earn enough money to buy a sailboat by June, picture the boat; feel the railing; smell and taste the salty air; and hear the sound of the wind whipping against the sail.

3. A businesslike attitude. MLM opportunities typically have low start-up costs. Unfortunately, this often translates into a weak commitment on the start-up marketer's part. Commit to pursuing your MLM business as intensely as if you had invested $100,000 to get started. Prepare a written business plan--and follow it. Review your plan at least once a quarter. When you treat your network marketing venture as a genuine business--as opposed to a hobby you pursue "when you feel like it"--you'll succeed.

4. Self-discipline. Do what you plan to do. If you have 15 sales calls scheduled, make those calls--no matter what. Each action you plan and accomplish takes you closer to your goals.

5. Willingness to learn. Just because you were successful in previous jobs doesn't mean you'll automatically earn top dollar in network marketing. This is a new game with a different set of rules. Take every opportunity to learn those rules. Study books on MLM, attend seminars offered by your parent company and spend time with your sponsors.

6. Belief in your product or service. Are you proud to represent your MLM company? Do you get excited telling others about the products or services you sell? When you believe in what you do and the company you represent, you increase the likelihood that prospects will, too.

7. A long-term focus. Beware of get-rich-quick claims. Success in MLM, as in any type of business, takes time. Define the necessary steps and commit to doing them--even when you don't see tangible results right away.

8. A positive attitude. Surround yourself with positive, enthusiastic people. Listen to cassette tapes and read books that spur you on to maximum achievement. When you fill your mind with positive thoughts, you generate the energy you need to make your business flourish.

9. Persistence. As in any new business, you'll face many obstacles on your way to achieving your goals. Resolvek to go the distance. When times get tough, call your sponsors for encouragement.

Bonnie Ross-Parker is a senior executive with The Peoples Network, an Atlanta-based MLM company.

Contact Sources

Mannatech Inc., (800) 459-5013, suprhnet@cris.com

NuSkin International, (800) 487-1500

The Peoples Network, (800) 218-9916, http://www.gostarship.com/brparke

The Wood International Group, (949) 854-0484, doriswood@mlmradio.com

World Tech Marketing, (714) 653-9202, nxtstp@earthlink.com

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Sean Lyden is the CEO of Prestige Positioning (a service of The Professional Writing Firm Inc.), an Atlanta-based firm that "positions" clients as leading experts in their field-through ghost-written articles and books for publication. Clients include Morgan Stanley, IFG Securities, SunTrust Service Corp. and several professional advisory and management consulting firms nationwide.

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This article was originally published in the July 1998 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: On The Level.

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