The Power of Teambuilding a 1993 Classic by Russ DeVan

The Teambuilding System is a proven, powerful Network Marketing business-building process that is so simple anyone can do it.

It is the most duplicatable way to grow your business that I have ever seen– and I’m convinced it is absolutely, positively infallible. It cannot fail!

I’ve worked in this business for more than [18] years now. In the past, I’ve succeeded with some programs and I’ve failed with others. There were times I went broke; and times I earned $10,000 a month. I’ve had companies go out of business on me. Others I quit because it just wasn’t working.

Today, my [partners] and I earn a consistent $60,000-a-month residual income and we’re on the verge of another quantum leap. What that next level will be– $80,000 a month, $100,000 or more– I honestly don’t know. But I do know this: My success has been accomplished by learning how to duplicate my current level of success with key leaders in my downline organization– and helping them to do the same.

The key is building a team of men and women who can be trained to do whatever it is that you are producing– in terms of volume and income– and consistently moving them up to the next level of productivity by following your example.

Teambuilding starts small:

$100 a month in combined personal consumption and retail sales. Then, according to your compensation plan, you train a manageable number of people to do the exact same thing you’ve just done. You keep doing that over and over as you progress up the ladder.

Of course, there are other ways to build a business, but in my experience, Teambuilding is the best. It’s not the fastest way, yet it is the only system I’ve found that gives you all of the following advantages: highest productivity, lowest attrition, greatest loyalty from your people, strongest organizational foundation, highest quality people, most fun, real residual income, and ultimately, checks that grow consistently.

The Path of Least Resistance

In prospecting, most Network Marketers are taught to make a list of family, friends, and associates– their warm market– and to prospect everybody and anybody they meet. It’s the “three-foot rule”– pitching the opportunity to anybody who gets within three feet of you. The thinking goes that sooner or later you’re bound to find somebody who’s interested in your business opportunity, somebody who’ll perform and make you a big check.

Prospecting this way, you’re going to encounter lots and lots of people who are resistant to what you have to say; people you have to work really hard on trying to convince just to take a look at what you have to offer.

That’s the Path of Great Resistance!

Talk to people because you enjoy talking with people. It’s amazing what happens when you don’t have prospecting as a hidden agenda.

The Path of Least Resistance begins by thinking through in advance what your ideal prospect/new distributor would look like.

Ask yourself, “Who do I really want on my team?”

Don’t you really want somebody who’s already successful … someone who doesn’t need the money, but is instead a person who sees this business as a tremendous opportunity for growth, development, and even greater financial independence … someone who’s always wanted to start his or her own business, but just didn’t know where or how to start?

Perhaps it’s someone who’s wide open to the possibilities of Network Marketing. Not someone you have to fight with about pyramids or sales objections.

Why not go after people who are aggressive, self-motivated, open-minded, and good with people, who already have sales, communication, management, and leadership skills?

If you were the founder and CEO of your own company seeking to fill an opening for a key top management position, you wouldn’t interview just anybody you went to high school with or just met on the street– would you? So why would you do that for your Network Marketing Sales company where you are the CEO and owner … where you are looking for the best people to build and manage your organization … men and women committed to their own and the business’ growth, success, and productivity?

Having in mind a clear idea of who you’re really after on your leadership team changes the kind of people you approach to sponsor and how you approach them, as well.

Now, I’m not suggesting you don’t talk to strangers. I’m saying don’t prospect everyone. Talk to everybody, but prospect only those people who fit your criteria for the kind of people you really want on your team. Talk to waiters and waitresses, everyone you meet, and as you do, listen for those leadership/team-member qualities you’re looking for to emerge from the conversation. Talk to people because you enjoy talking with people. It’s amazing what happens when you don’t have prospecting as a hidden agenda.

Who To Talk To and About What

I recommend you develop your own list of characteristics and behaviors that you’re looking for in people to prospect and sponsor on your team. Here’s a list of some of the qualities I’m looking for when I prospect people– and I highly recommend you write down your own list and review it regularly:

>People who are open-minded.

>Someone committed to having something better than he or she has now.

>Hard workers.


>Attractive people; by that I mean a person other people are attracted to.

>People who have a plan for their future– who want to succeed by design.

>The way I find these people is to have a conversation with them.

I’m looking for people who want something better and who have some kind of plan on how to get it. I have little interest in someone who says they want a better life but have no idea what it takes. It’s not important what I think of their plan: what matters is that they have one. That way, I know they’re the kind of people who will appreciate “Success by Design,” and I don’t have to spend a lot of time and effort trying to get them to see that you can’t succeed without a plan.

And that’s how I find out what somebody’s committed to as well: If they have a plan, they’re committed. They know what they want and have an idea of what they’re willing to do to get it. When they say, “Gee, I never thought I needed a plan for how to do it,” that’s no commitment. That’s a hope and a prayer. Although I have nothing against hope and praying, I side with the Quakers who say, “When you pray– move your feet.”

Commitment is vital, I would even say it’s mandatory for success in Network Marketing. If we researched all the new distributors who sign up in this business, I bet we’d find the number who quit directly equal to the number who started without a commitment– without a goal and a plan to reach that goal.

Success By Design

I think the “throw ’em up against the wall and see who sticks” theory that’s so pervasive in Network Marketing comes from the misguided impression that the only way to succeed in this business is to sponsor a whole lot of people. That’s the MLM lottery, and the chances of winning are not much better than the odds for hitting your state’s Lotto jackpot– currently averaging about 7.1 million to one.

What I’m encouraging you to do is the opposite approach to this business. It’s what I call Success By Design. You’re looking for five or six strong people (or whatever number works best for your compensation plan; my number is five). These are your leaders. That’s all you need. You can arrive at that goal quicker, with far less effort (and frustration) by seeking out those special, capable people you really want to be in business with right from the start.

Obviously, you will have to sponsor a number of people more than five to get five leaders. My point is to focus on signing leaders. Not just everybody you meet.

Once you have your first five leaders, don’t stop– but do slow down. Don’t continue to sponsor more and more and more. Focus about 15 percent of your time on bringing in new people and 85 percent on managing and supporting your team. Don’t dilute your effort by constantly going wider. Now it’s time for depth, and that comes from duplication.

The Three Tasks of the Team Captain

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Russ DeVan
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