Yes I’m in the network marketing industry but this isn’t a pitch because that would be dumb. You’re way smarter than that. And let’s be straight here – your ‘salesperson sniff test’ would have my offer hung on a hook over your fireplace so fast I wouldn’t even have a chance to squeak out my why story. Let’s be real here. The scent of a seller can be picked up from miles away.
Two of my sons are at that age where career choices shouldn’t even be in their consciousness, but it is. They are fourteen and twelve. Let me ask you, when you were a teenager did you give two licks about how you would want to spend 40-60 hours per week trading time for money? No. You had a dream (if you were lucky), you may have had a whiff of a passion (if you were blessed that way), and you may have even figured out a couple of things that set you apart from your fellow students (if your parents or teachers saw it in you). But honestly, could you foresee that you would be doing what you are doing right now, back then? And would your profession today have made you want to buckle down at fifteen years old to get good grades in order to do it?
For a small percentage of us – the answer might be yes, but it’s complicated isn’t it? Getting to where you are today, even if you are totalllllllly fulfilled and in your ‘Vein of Gold’ as Julia Cameron calls it, was likely not as simple a process as earning As and Bs in grade ten. For a large percentage of us, our j.o.b. has nothing to do with our dreams or our passions, but instead has become that thing we do j.b. (just because).
I think J.O.B.’s are given a bad rap in the network marketing industry. I think running your own direct sales organization, serving clients and supporting new team members to reach the heights of their potential is also a j.o.b. and it’s just as challenging, time consuming, frustrating and as wildly fulfilling (often more so) as it is to go to ‘work’ each day.
I started in this industry over ten years ago and while, just like any j.o.b., I’ve loved it, been frustrated, been enamoured and crushed, felt purposeful and useless, been side-swiped and blessed… this is my j.o.b. and shhhh… listen closely because I’m going to whisper this… selling and recruiting is not my passion. Sometimes I feel like I’m bad-mouthing the industry when I admit that selling isn’t my “it” because there is such a push out there these days to Live Your Passion, to Be Your Genius, to never Sell-Out on your Dreams… Here’s my big aha that smacked me silly a few years back: Why did I ever believe I had to choose? When did having a job = bad, and living a dream = good? What if having them both = peaceful? = happy? Being a network marketer is my skillset and not my soulset. It requires my mindset to flex positively like a muscle I’ve trained to respond, and this j.o.b. asks only of my body that it do what it’s designed to do: eat for fuel, sleep for repair and breathe to live. It’s not romantic or dreamy eyed, yet it’s warm and it’s just as real as any job I’ve ever had.
The network marketing industry isn’t weird, it isn’t a cop-out, and it sure isn’t a short cut either. It’s a j.o.b. just like everything else we can do to earn an income. I love it because it fits me. Would I have chosen this as a profession in grade ten? Ummm absolutely not. Would I have studied for it in college? Are you kidding me? No no no no no… most definitely not. Funny eh? Somehow I ended up here and this overlooked, highly judged and wildly misunderstood industry has grown me up like nothing else I’ve ever done has.
In it’s simplicity, network marketing or direct sales is just another way for people to come in from the cold. I earn a good, honest living, and my needs are being met. I’m peaceful and that’s all that truly matters to me.