Thinking About the Freedom of a Home Based Business?

THINK, THEN DO.
The recent demise of several companies that used network marketing (or a facsimile) to sell their products to consumers, led me to reflect on the reasons that these, and many other companies, like them, fail.

Having been associated with a Consumer Direct Marketing business (a successful one) myself for more than 10 years makes me, at least somewhat, qualified to share some of my observations. I became an independent marketing executive with my company after being introduced by my enroller to the 12 success factors that portend a successful company and personal career with that company. My company possessed them all, so I was encouraged.

But in reflecting on the companies that have failed in the past, both long ago and recently, I came to a conclusion that, if there were success factors, there must be failure factors, as well. Some of these are simply reciprocals of the success factors, which would make it easy. As you and I both know, nothing comes easy, so I’m sharing a few of “think out loud” thoughts here. 

First, if the company you are considering is a pyramid business model—where only a few early “fortunates” will prosper—it is, first of all, illegal and finally, destined to fail, just because of the structure. It’s not the shape, because most direct marketing businesses have the “shape” of a pyramid. The downfall of the pyramid model is that the preponderance of compensation is not based on product sales, but on signing up others at a significant fee or large unsold product commitments. Don’t go there.

Another failure factor: a company that offers one or two products (even if size and applications vary). A company with a large variety of products and product categories that embrace duplicated, family spending; budget allocations that are already being made; offer an opportunity to expand your approach market exponentially, and your potential for success, greatly. However, a wide variety of products aren’t enough—the products must be higher in quality or unique in valuable ways and they MUST be competitively priced with their alternatives. Unique, superior, competitively priced products are what make the Consumer Direct Marketing model work.

A start-up company is sometimes a good bet in the technology/software business, but is almost never a good bet when it comes to consumer goods. A company with no history is using YOU to test every idea. Unless you enjoy being a lab rat, avoid this environment.

Another factor to examine is the company’s balance sheet (you will have to source that for yourself since that likely will not be shared).
Next, is the company you are considering partnering with carrying bundles of unexplainable debt? If so, their future may be in doubt, and therefore, so is yours.

So a definite failure factor is unfunded spending in a business, as it is in our personal lives.

I’m happy to say the company I represent has absolutely no debt—as in zero—even in capital investments. So a definite “failure factor” is unfunded spending in a business, as it is in our personal lives.

Now let’s talk about the effort you invest in creating a consumer, it is considerable, particularly if you do a more than adequate job explaining your products and your business. If the association you are considering allows you to continue benefiting from those efforts in the form of continuing residual income, those efforts are (or eventually will be) worth it. But, there are many direct marketing models that provide breakaways, which simply means the money your consumer is still spending, is not enriching you any longer. Call me crazy, but that’s not a good deal, and certainly, qualifies as a failure factor.

So as you choose a business model to represent, use the above-mentioned success factors as a benchmark. For my choice, I was able to avoid all of the failure factors. The fact is that my choice was so sound that the only failure factor I had to overcome was myself!
Yep, I was the only variable. Was I going to try this business or was I going to do this business? In the direct marketing arena, once you have sorted the successes from the failures, it always comes down to that choice…TRY or DO. I am not going to attempt to influence your ultimate choice, but when you have made yours, commit yourself to the do and not the try or don’t make the choice at all.

Stay where you are, it may work out. Really… REALLY?

Can The Fear Of Success Cause Me To Fail?

The fear of failure is easy to understand. We all experience it, even if it
is only from time to time (but it is likely more often). Fear of failure is
right there “in your face”. It presents itself right up front and is obvious.
As I said, fear of failure is easy to understand.

But it may be that the fear of success is your biggest obstacle. It is much more insidious and more difficult to identify. The linked article below Lifehack can be very helpful in identifying that you fear success.

Try saying it to yourself, “I am afraid of being successful”, it doesn’t sound right. It sounds counter-intuitive. Check the behaviors, which indicate that you may, indeed, fear success. The article explains some things that you can do. You probably have heard that your subconscious mind is in charge much more than your conscious mind is.

Don’t be afraid of being extraordinary. Having a strong why can help you overcome the fear of success. Revisit your why often or, more importantly, write it down and keep it in front of you where you will see it often. You and what you can do for you is powerful beyond measure.

If you work hard doing results producing activities, becoming successful is inevitable. You will have your share of failures. It is just part of life. Believing that you deserve or even are entitled to success can make it all happen. It all begins with you. Don’t fear to become rich, standing out or change. Don’t avoid doing two things every day that will lead you to become the awesome you that is within you.

Lifehack article:  Can the fear of success cause me to fail?/


Inspiration vs. Motivation

Many of us use the words inspiration and motivation interchangeably as if it were the same word. In fact, the words and the emotions they evoke are distinctly different.

Inspiration is an external, driving force usually associated with some newly discovered information. Motivation, on the other hand, is an internal, pulling force that can only come from inside you. 

In many ways, these concepts seem to conflict because we “feel” inspired, which comes from within and motivation has some elements of external factors, which cause us to take action. There is an external need that requires us to take action.

A great speaker at a convention can inspire us with the information they provide, but the call to action comes from inside of us and we are responsible for taking that action. Motivation is when you get a hold of an idea and take it to a conclusion. Inspiration is when an idea gets a hold on you and drives you where you intend to go.

So, create your motives (and your motivation). You will get your inspiration from your spirit. Keep exposing yourself to new information and you will continue to “fill your tank” with inspiration. Your motivations for initiating your actions are YOUR responsibility. Don’t shirk it; embrace it and it will soon become a very good and successful habit. Habits are activities that duplicate themselves.    

Stuck in your comfort zone?

Monday thoughts.

How many of you are stuck in your own comfort zone?
You feel safe doing what you have been doing every day, but question when you don’t get the results that you desire.
This can pertain to any aspect of your life: health, fitness, relationships, business, etc.

Have you ever had a conversation with yourself?
I don’t mean just talking out loud like some people do. I mean really dig deep inside and pull out what it is that really scares you.
Only you can find out the true answer.

Now, don’t lie, because you will only lie to yourself and you are the one person you never want to tell lies.
Once you identify your fear, ask yourself if you take a step towards conquering it, will it physically or mentally harm anyone? 99.9% the answer will be no. The only ‘harm’  might be palpitations and cold sweats.

Identify the fear that makes you stuck in your comfort zone, take a deep breath and just go for it! What is the worse thing that can happen?
You dip your toe in the cold water and after the initial shock, you breath and say to yourself, ‘that wasn’t so bad! I got this!’
Little steps like this will help you step outside your comfort zone and positive results will happen!
Remember, FEAR is Face Everything And Roar!

Can The Fear Of Success Cause Me To Fail?

The fear of failure is easy to understand. We all experience it, even if it is only from time to time (but it is likely more often). Fear of failure is right there “in your face”. It presents itself right up front and is obvious. As I said, fear of failure is easy to understand.

But it may be that the fear of success is your biggest obstacle. It is much more insidious and more difficult to identify. The article below from “Lifehack” can be very helpful in identifying that you fear success.

Try saying it to yourself, “I am afraid of being successful”, it doesn’t sound right. It sounds counter-intuitive. Check the behaviors, which indicate that you may, indeed, fear success. The article explains some things that you can do. You have often heard (probably) that your subconscious mind is in charge much more than your conscious mind is.

Don’t be afraid of being extraordinary. Having a strong why can help you overcome the fear of success. Revisit your “why” often or, more importantly, write it down and keep it in front of you where you will see it often. You and what you can do for you is powerful beyond measure.

If you work hard doing results producing activities, becoming successful is inevitable. You will have your share of failures. It is just part of life. Believing that you deserve or even are entitled to success can make it all happen. It all begins with you. Don’t fear to become rich, standing out or change. Don’t avoid doing two things every day that will lead you to become the awesome you that is within you.

www.lifehack.org/articles/communication/what-you-have-fear-success.html

Benefits Of Mentoring

Mentoring is a practice that is touted by many contemporary companies. You have probably also heard it referred to as “coaching”. No matter what it is called, it is a practice that, obviously, is an asset to those being mentored (mentees).

But, have you stopped to think that there are also significant benefits to those doing the mentoring? The article below from “The Chronicle” helps point out some ways where the benefits of mentoring not only flow down to the mentee, but up to the mentor. You see it is not a one-way street.

The lessons you teach can serve as a relearning experience for the mentor. As you increase the confidence and the posture, it improves your own and reinforces the skills that got you to where you are. So as you remind your mentees to have confidence in themselves and their personal resources, take an inventory of your own realizations.

Mentorship forces you to step back to when you were being mentored. As they ask questions you will be faced with your own past experiences that will put their questions in the context of your experiences. How did I learn that? What helped me when I was in their position?

Just because you are now the mentor does NOT mean you are all-knowing. Keep perspective on the perceived hierarchy and remember you can learn from those that you mentor, as well. So keep an open mind and be willing to learn from them. They are usually younger than you are and have a much more contemporary perspective than yours.

Let your mentoring experience make you a better leader. Bear in mind that, as you help them, you should be helping yourself increase your leadership skills. And always be aware that the mentoring journey is all about them. What you get back is collateral knowledge. They are happy to share with you because of what they have gleaned from your relationship.

The company, with which I have associated myself, has established the mentoring (coaching) process as the cornerstone of owning and growing a healthy business that will pay “lifetime” dividends.  It is so integral to their culture; it has been incorporated into the Mission Statement. I keep it on my desk so that I am able to review it every day.

chronicle.umbmentoring.org/four-ways-mentoring-benefits-mentor/

Five Critical Roles In Your Business

As you begin to establish your new business, there are critical roles that must be fulfilled in order to assure or at least give you a bigger chance of success. If you have the luxury of a large, quality pool of team members from which to choose, you may have these resources on your existing team.

Most new businesses do not have the advantage of having existing team members that can accomplish these tasks, so the alternative is that you must fill these roles yourself with an eye to recruit with these necessary roles in mind. The below article from Forbes tells us that these roles must be filled and identifies what they are and why they are indispensable.

You are the “de-facto” leader as a founder of your business. As its primary coach, you must lead in a way that creates love and respect for the way that you lead. Your first task is to find an “expert” who knows the industry, the market, and the products and is able to communicate those to the rest of the team.

The financial guru who keeps track of the income matrices and expenses that the team deems worthy of taking on. This person may be domestic to the team or be an external resource. Most entrepreneurs are busy with the everyday tasks of being leaders, so there is a need for a strategist who is skilled at navigating the future and guiding the enterprise into a profitable and fulfilling enterprise.

Finally, there is a need for the executer that takes ownership of the company’s plans and monitors their progress in the day-to-day operation. The executer understands, fully, the company’s expectations and how they are performing from one day, one week, one month and one year to the next. The executer knows what needs to be done, when and how.

As we have said, earlier, sometimes in start-up and new business endeavors these roles must be filled by the founder with an eye to the future as you recruit for your team. A lot of work in the beginning and the use of some outside resources that are available to you can fill those roles in the short or even the long-term and can lead to great things in your business.

www.forbes.com/sites/alanhall/2013/03/30/five-critical-team-members-for-business-success/#1f775e42ad90