Leaders Hold a Vision by John David Mann

John David MannYour Job is to Show Others Your Faith Master motivator Zig Ziglar recently said, “People with hope take action. Encouragement is the fuel on which that hope runs. That encouragement is what everyone needs.”16

That’s a great job description for a network marketer: you are that fuel; you create a context for action by fueling that hope.

The apostle Paul enunciated an intriguing leadership concept: “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen.”17 When people start out in this business, they hope it will work. But hope alone is not a force sufficient to keep them in the game long enough to get results. In Paul’s original Greek text, the word we translate as “substance” is hypostasis, which literally means “standing under.” (Look inside the English word “substance” and you’ll find the same concept.) NULL

That’s a good definition for faith and for vision, too. Your stance is where you stand, your thoughts and ideas, your wants and intentions – and your hopes. Faith is what exists behind or under your stance. Sound esoteric? It’s wonderfully practical.

The single biggest challenge to your growing organization is the constant current of emotional disorder that swirls around your fledgling business-builders.

They are surrounded by doubts, fears and disbelief – theirs and others’. Your job as a leader is to hold the vision for your people – the company’s vision, your vision and their vision. They count on you and rely on you to do this. It’s one of the biggest jobs you have. Virtually every prospect you meet is to some degree infected by a universal epidemic of low financial self-esteem. People are just looking for evidence that “this won’t work.” Your evident skillfulness at what you do won’t help the situation, either: the more impressive your presentation, the more likely your prospect is to say to himself, “That might work for you – but it’ll never work for me!” Those swirling currents of doubt, fear and skepticism that bathe your new distributors’ psyches are what surrounds their stance – literally, their circumstance.

One of the most important leadership attributes you can bring to your prospects and to the people in your organization is your clarity about what you’re offering.

If you are apologetic or defensive, they won’t “catch the vision” from you – they’ll catch your ambiguity like the infectious disease that it is. New business-builders often worry, “Am I being too pushy?” That’s a legitimate concern – but typically an overestimated one. Equally important, often more important, is this: are you coming across as too vague? As ambivalent? Prospects want to feel that you know what you’re talking about. They want you to be sure. They want you to be in charge. This is why immediate and consistent follow-through is so important in every phase of the business, why you need to get with prospects within seventy-two hours after their first look at your business (and within forty-eight or twenty-four is even better) to help them have a second look. The moment you hang up the phone with prospects, their sense of your faith – of your vision, your substance – starts to fade, eroded by the entropy of their circumstance.

Those are the two forces – your substance and their circumstance – that battle for influence over their stance, over what they decide to do about your opportunity.

Sponsoring is not an event, it’s a process. In the course of that process your confident vision and their context of motivational hydrogen-death play tug-of-war. Some people look as if they’re ready to set the world on fire once you’ve signed them up. Don’t believe it. Everyone, absolutely everyone, needs to be not just signed and enrolled but also started in the business.

Everyone, absolutely everyone, needs to be enrolled, re-enrolled, and re-enrolled again.

Circumstance will serve as a continual drag on their confidence in the business; that’s why a simple “info pack” or “follow-up kit” from your company won’t do the job. People need more than informational content; they need emotional content, personal content, belief content. They need leadership. They need you. You are the evidence of what they can’t yet see. They need your unshakable substance. They need your faith. It is perhaps the most important thing you have to offer.

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