Deadbeats in Your Downline?

My wife has a cousin who is in a MLM company and in 18 months achieved Senior Vice President status.

Not only that, but he also received an $800 monthly allowance for the luxury vehicle of his choice.

Seeing a trusted family member have success in the network marketing industry was the reason why my wife and I decided to join one also.

But everything isn’t always peaches and cream.

Just recently, my wife was telling me that the team members in her cousin’s downline were jeopardizing his current position due to their lack of commitment and not making the business their first priority.

JEOPARDIZING his current position as senior vice president?

Yes, because in most, if not all, network marketing companies, your current position in your company (especially if you have built a sizable downline) is not only based on the number of people you recruit, but also on production. Not just from you, but from your downline as well.

There’s no tenure. Month after month, year after year you and your team must produce.

And if you have big dreams of leaving your W2 income job or replacing the income from another business, then you not only want to maintain, but you want to grow your business as well.

So, some of the members in his downline were not as productive as they should be, mainly because they were involved in other network marketing opportunities and were treating his company as just a “side” opportunity.

That’s why they didn’t make his business their first priority.

So after hearing this story about my wife’s cousin, I had a strong feeling of where the source of the problem might have been and what I could tell him to make his business more robust.

I’m going to share with YOU the exact same things that I will be sharing with my wife’s cousin.

And what I’m going to tell you and him is NOT what you’re going to expect!

What I have to tell both you and him is,

“If you want your business to grow, then it’s not up to your downline, it’s up to YOU.”

You see, the reason why your growth has flat lined or your current position is in jeopardy is not directly due to your downline, but because there are a lack of ROBUST systems in place in your business.

If you want to grow your network marketing business year-after-year, then you need three primary systems in place.  They are…

  1. Systems for selecting new team members or recruits
  2. Training systems for reliable duplication
  3. Accountability & measuring systems

So let’s begin with the first of the three systems:

1.  Systems for Qualifying New Team Members

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Growing your downline is not just a numbers game. In some cases, you’ll find that many of the top earners don’t necessarily have the biggest teams.

What’s more important is the quality of your downline, especially the new people that you recruit into your downline. These are the very people that will begin to shape your team.

Quality over quantity.

You need a system to effectively screen for better quality recruits. The simplest way to do this is to create your own “hiring” application form.

If an application form is good enough for any other industry job, then why shouldn’t it be good enough for your business?

If you’re trying to grow a REAL network marketing business and you have dreams of being a 6 or 7 figure a year earner, then this is an essential step to getting the right people in your downline.

Allow the application form help you identify whether an individual possesses the qualities that you look for in a team member. Some example questions that you could ask in the application form are:

  1. What are your 12 month income goals?
  2. Why do you want to work in this particular business opportunity?
  3. If you could magically change 3 things in your life in the next 12 months, what would they be?
  4. What is the biggest obstacle standing in the way of you and your success?
  5. How much money would you like to earn in your first 3 months?
  6. Why do you feel you’re the best fit for our organization or business? (In order for the prospect to properly answer this question, you should have done a thorough job of explicitly providing the details about your business, team or organization).

Depending on the questions you include in your application, you can then get a sense of the prospect’s motivations, long term goals and how serious they are about building their own business.

Once you have a selection of applicants that you have qualified on paper, you can then further screen them through a phone call to get more details. You can then ask further questions to get a sense of the prospect’s personality and how coachable they may be.

If you’re happy with the phone conversation you had with your qualifying candidates, then you can make it official by having them join your opportunity.

Now, how do you ensure that your new recruit can properly duplicate your methods for success? Well, that brings us to the second system you’re going to need in your business.

2. Training systems for reliable duplication

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This step will be the most critical system you place into your business. Even with star talent on your team, if you don’t properly train them, they may be doomed to failure.

How do you ensure that your unique methods, strategies or recruiting and selling formulas transfer to your new downline recruits?

How does McDonald’s ensure that their Big Mac sandwich taste the same in New York as it does in Ireland?

The answer is training systems.

All of your unique methods, strategies or recruiting and selling formulas must be proceduralized. You need standard operating procedures for all of the critical activities that have equated to success in your business.

For example, in traditional “old school” network marketing, do you have specific scripts that must be used for inviting someone to your opportunity? Is it different when it’s inviting someone from your cold list vs. your warm list?

Is there a specific way you want your team members to conduct home parties, hotel meetings or webinars?

If there are and you want to ensure that your team members duplicate, then you should have standard operating procedures (SOPs) in place.

Create the SOPs for the activities that you want your team members to duplicate and have them learn them.

Tim Sales, a well know network marketer who built a MLM business generating over $150,000 per month with over 2400 distributors joining every month, says that the first 30 days for a new team member should be spent primarily on training and learning the systems.

At least 80% of their time should be committed to training and learning before taking any significant action.

I agree.

A well trained, knowledgeable team is also a more confident team and is more likely to take action.

Once you have created your SOPs, you have to decide how you want to transfer this information to your new team members. How will you teach it? There are several ways present the training depending on how much material must be learned.

What we’ve decided to do in our business is to create e-learning courses that new team members can access through the internet.

The learning course will be assigned to the new member; they’ll then read, study and learn the content, followed by a quiz or assessment to test for comprehension.

There are some great e-learning course programs that will allow you to develop your own e-learning courses which can then be accessed by new team members through the internet. As team members train and take their assessments, the e-learning course program can provide reports on their course progress and assessment results.

Whatever methods, techniques or procedures that you have used to create success in your business, whether it’s the ability to recruit prospects into your opportunity, or your ability to use Facebook advertising to sell your products, you need some type of training system to transfer that information to your new recruits.

3. Accountability and Measurement Systems

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So now your team members are well trained in all of the procedures of your business and now it’s time to start taking action.

One way to ensure that your downline team members are productive is to have accountability and tracking systems in place.

An easy way to create this is by rewarding points for various activities that your team members need to perform.

Equip team members (especially new team members) with a daily activity tracker. The only activities in this tracker should be those activities that lead to business growth.

For instance, the daily activity tracker’s first activity could be goal setting for the day and for the week. Other activities could include making 20 phone calls to their cold list (which they would have already been trained on).

If you’re like us and recruit and advertise through social media, then perhaps your daily activity would be going live on Facebook. Maybe your new team members will spend part of their day crafting their first Facebook Likes campaign for their business fan page.

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Now, each activity found in the activity tracker is worth various points.

A traditional network marketing activity, such as a phone call follow-up that results in your team member leaving a voicemail, may be worth 1 point. A phone call leading to an actual person-to-personal conversation may be worth 3 points.

Perhaps one of your team members hosted 3 training webinars which lead to two new sponsorships. A certain number of points can be awarded for hosting the webinars and even more points for sponsoring those 2 new members.

For Tim Sales, proper training is the upmost priority in business. Tim puts a higher premium on training new team members than he does recruiting them. You’ll be rewarded more points for training your 2 new members than sponsoring them.

Each downline team member can track and record their activities in a shared spreadsheet that you’ve created online for each team member.

Increase team member’s motivation by providing incentives for those with the most points every month or every quarter. Have monthly webinar meetings with your downline to discuss your team’s results and progress for the month.

This will serve to provide the accountability, measuring and motivation to help your team thrive and grow.

Remember, it is important to track and measure the essential activities that will lead to success in your organization from all team members. Including YOU!

So if you haven’t already done so, begin the process of building these 3 systems if you truly want to run a first class organization.

If need be, reduce your recruiting and sales activities for the next 30 days and invest the time on building these systems into your business. The long term benefits for your business will be well worth the time spent.

To your success in business,

Steven Thomas

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