Does Network Marketing Work for Women? by Jillian Middleton

Jillian MiddletonThe network marketing business model offers a definition of success that includes a lifestyle that respects the value of each day’s activities.  Sue’s day starts at 5:00 am. Although the hour is excruciatingly early, it is also precious. Until tonight, this next hour is the only time Sue has that she can call her own. And if Sue was being really honest with herself, even that hour isn’t really hers. When Sue’s kids get up she needs to be ready to get them ready for day care and school so she can get to work on time, Sue needs to use this precious quiet hour to get herself set to greet the day. Once the hour gets to 6:00 am, Sue’s official day as Mom, wife, and employee starts… and it doesn’t end until dinner, cleanup, homework, the kids are tucked away in bed, and anything else needing attention is finished. Unfortunately for Sue, by that time of night, she is also spent and ready to fall into bed herself because tomorrow morning at 5:00 am her day starts again. NULL

Sue has no way out of this scenario. There is no flexibility in her day. The big eater of Sue’s time isn’t being a mom and getting the kids off to day care and school. The big eater of Sue’s day is the fact she is an employee of someone else. Sue’s life is dictated around her job. What time the little one gets to day care and her school age youngster gets to ‘extended school time’ is dictated by what time Sue has to be at work. Sue has to do her grocery shopping either during lunch (That’s tough on anything that needs to stay cold or frozen.); or on her way home from work (Is there enough time to get through the market and pick up the kids on time?). How does Sue solve these issues? She spends her precious ‘time off’’ on the weekend running errands, doing marketing, cleaning house, and spreading herself thin trying to get her kids to their activities. Once more, at the end of the day on the weekends, Sue is spent and ready to fall into bed. A real treat for Sue is to wake up when she is finished sleeping rather than to an alarm. What Does This Have To Do With Network Marketing?

What does this have to do with network marketing? Simple, it’s flexibility. If Sue is willing to build a Network Marketing business, it will give Sue control over her most precious asset, her time.

When Sue controls her time rather than a third party controlling her time, i.e., her employer, Sue is in the driver’s seat of her life. Businesses take time, energy, money and commitment to build, so how does building her own business versus building someone else’s business really help Sue? The first and obvious answer: Sue will own the asset her business creates from her work and time, rather than her boss owning the asset. She will own her Network Marketing business. But Network Marketing also adds something else to the mix that Sue most likely won’t see in her job. Leverage. Sue’s Network Marketing Business Offers Her Leverage

The Network Marketing business model offers leverage. What does that look like in Sue’s life? She works less time than she would in a traditional job or business but gets paid more.

As Sue empowers other women (and men) to control their time and lives, Sue’s parent company will reward her with a commission or bonus (or both) on the volume generated each month by those Sue empowers. Thus, Sue’s time is leveraged. She creates more income potential for the time she works in her network marketing business than she can in her job. If Sue works and builds her business in a professional business manner, rather than like a hobby or ‘hoping it will work,’ Sue can leverage her time, put in less hours, and make more money. Sue has created what her former employer created, but with a wonderful twist. Sue now gets paid on the efforts of others, just like her former boss did on Sue’s efforts. But unlike her former boss, Sue has also empowered those very same people to control and create their own leveraged business. A Workplace Dominated by Empowered Women As a business coach and an entrepreneur with lots of education in gender studies, political science and psychology, it excites me to think of powerful, autonomous women in the workplace. The workplace drives our economy. It can be strongly argued the economy is a major driving force of our culture. As women move into entrepreneurial leadership and bring their voices to the business marketplace the conversation will change. I believe that money will still be a part of the ‘success’ equation, but not the entire definition. The Definition of Success Expands As more women become entrepreneurs and professionally work their network marketing businesses, I believe the definition of success will also expand. It seems almost impossible to believe otherwise.

If new voices are added to the conversation, voices who typically hold values different from traditional male dominated corporate values, then the discussion will take on a new dynamic.

Over the years, as a business coach to thousands of women in both traditional business and network marketing, I have heard the frustration that their core values have no voice. These are voices who value the day-to-day activities of child rearing as being important in the equation of a successful life. This voice also seems to encompass women, like me, who are child free.

They still hold to the value that enjoying the day to day activities that make up each of our lives are part of the ‘success’ equation. Money is important, but not paramount.

They are frustrated that much of their time is spent running from one thing to another to “get it all done,” rather than enjoying the process of living as we do what we do. A Promise of Network Marketing With a good professional business attitude and a strong duplicable system (think McDonalds), the network marketing business model offers a definition of success that includes a lifestyle that respects the value of each day’s activities. Success will include enjoying the jobs and tasks we choose to accomplish each day. When we turn our minds and hearts to our business, we give them our all. Not obsessively, driven with the angst of ‘making the sale,’ but rather by enjoying the process of the endeavor itself. Running a business will still be a priority, but only during its allotted time. When we turn our attention to our families, they will get all our attention. We won’t be multitasking, sort of listening, or sort of ‘being there,’ but also trying to ‘be’ elsewhere too. When we turn our attention to ourselves, we will be able to do it ‘guilt free’ and fully relax and replenish.

Yes, success will include financial stability, growth and expansion. But, it will also include a balance in life that isn’t readily found in today’s marketplace.

Not balance in the sense of equal parts of distribution of time and labor, but rather, balance as in a harmony of all the parts of life working together.

The driving force of success will be the quality of time spent doing the activity.

Imagine for a moment the difference in all our lives and in the culture at large, if our definition of success was determined by the quality of the time we spend with our families, ourselves, and our businesses. It has always seemed to me that we have things a bit backwards. What I see in many people when they start coaching is their lives seem to be all about creating their businesses. Yet, shouldn’t our businesses be all about creating wonderful lives? After all, what are we working for? Pollyanna?

After years of entrepreneurship in both traditional and network marketing businesses, I believe the network marketing business model of leverage, built on cooperation rather than competition, is a perfect place for women to take their rightful place in redefining the business success equ
ation.

Like all things, I don’t expect that this will happen overnight. But, I am also aware that small changes in the beginning often bring great changes later. From personal experience, both working in the industry and coaching others in Network Marketing, I know that “Sue” can build her business while she lives a life she designs. Sue can take control over her time. Sue can, with practice, (like building any skill) spend her time on things that mean the most. And yes, the laundry will still get done and the shopping will still get done. But, the angst, the turmoil, and the drop-dead exhaustion will not be part of the equation. Here are the ingredients:

  • Choose a viable network marketing company
  • With a Fair and Strong Compensation Plan
  • With a product you respect
  • Professionally run it with a good business plan and operating system
  • YOU

 

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Jillian Middleton
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