Imagine this recruiting scenario.
After giving your next presentation, the prospect says enthusiastically, “I love it. I love the business model, I love the products, and I love selling.”
You’re thinking – “Wow. I can’t believe my luck.” You start dreaming about your new massive downline.
Then the prospect says: “I’m ready to sign up except for one thing. I have to talk to my spouse.”
What is your first reaction?
Is it, “Great. Spousal support is important! In fact, it makes or breaks a lot of distributors.”
Or is it, “Yipes, this could tank everything we agreed on.”
Which reaction do you think is more common?
Whenever one partner starts an endeavor that requires sustained effort and emotional risk, it absolutely affects the spouse.
And that is where teamwork enters the picture.
If there is any marriage where teamwork is important, it’s when one spouse is a network marketer.
I think one of the reasons for the dismal success rates of people who go into network marketing is the lack of support on the home front.
It is tough enough when the newbie marketer keeps initiating effort and encounters disappointments, discouragements, and rejections. It’s even worse when they hear the painful lament of their spouse, “Do you really need another meeting tonight?”
Too often, the spouse left behind resents taking up unwanted slack while the networker is trying to build the business.
They are not working as a team. They haven’t effectively negotiated the different concerns, interests, values, and dreams.
Tension increases. Tough decisions are discussed. They feel forced to choose between supporting the business or the marriage/family.
This is what I want to correct. Because working as a team can solve a lot of problems.
I like the acronym for TEAM
Couples who are willing to develop the skills to work as a team can create the rewards of building a business, deepen their connections, and model important values for their children.
It’s not easy to create a strong team. It’s a complex set of many skills.
What traits do members of a strong team have? Here are some important ones. See what you recognize in yourself or your partner:
Self-awareness. Knowing what you desire and why those desires are important.
Other-awareness. Knowing your spouse’s desires and why they are important.
The ability and to both give and receive. Sounds simple. (It isn’t.)
The ability and willingness to coach and be coached when things heat up.
Negotiation skills that go beyond splitting the difference and meeting in a mildly unhappy middle.
Effective communication when your outrage meter starts spinning out of control.
Applying the correct mindset. The most toxic mindset of all distressed, non-teamwork couples is the attitude, “Why should I have to change when X problem shows up?”
If you can’t fully claim ownership over those 7 skills, don’t worry. Here’s a 10-word solution for you.
“If it is to be, it is up to me”
If you and your partner each adopt this mantra, you’re on the way to becoming an elite team.
These 10 words helps each of you focus on becoming more individually effective vs. striving to reform your spouse.
The strongest team in network marketing is the marriage team.
It takes teamwork to make the dream work.
Follow along in my future articles where I’ll offer insights and exercises that help you and your partner become unstoppable. I’ll teach you some of the key steps that have worked in my 35 years of specializing in couple’s therapy. In the process, I hope you realize the promise of why you got together in the first place.
And you both take your dreams farther than you thought possible.
Check out his January 2006 article on the brain describing why it is so challenging to achieve big dreams.
Peter Pearson. Ph.D. is a psychologist who has specialized in working with couples for 35 years. He has been a distributor and trainer of network marketers. He has been interviewed in major national media of television, newspapers, magazines, and radio about building strong marriages.
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