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Entrepreneurial Failure

7 Great Ways to Kill Your Direct Selling Company

Follow these tips for a sure-fire epic failure.

by Jonathan Gilliam, Momentum Factor


Are you excited and working hard every day to build a great direct selling company? If so, this post is not for you.

This article is for those who seem to have a death wish when it comes to making their company a success. For those in this category, I present the following tips certain to destroy all you’ve worked for and shorten your direct selling career.

Do these things, then sit back and watch the money roll out. Enjoy the downward spiral into perpetual status as industry afterthought. And the best part? You’ll never know what you missed because you’ll likely be tied up for years in litigation.

Good luck! (Or should I say bad luck?)

1) Lose focus. If you really want to confuse your field, come up with a new program or byzantine promotion as often as possible. Offer a new product every week. Be sure your story is muddled and complicated and use complex science-y speak as much as possible. Chase shiny new objects that have no bearing on the mission of the company.

2) Tell half-truths. Nothing stabs the field in the heart faster than being lied to. Networkers are naturally optimistic and normally are trusting of their company and team but start fibbing and you’ll quickly find things turning against you. You’ll also get to enjoy endless phone calls from angry leaders demanding the truth. Fun fun!

3) Be underfunded. Just as the company hits its stride, be sure to run out of money. Many otherwise promising direct selling companies fail because they can’t fund their fast growth and things just break down. If you have no cushion available to fund the gaps, you’re sure to be out of business just as fast as you started.

4) Over-promise and under-deliver. A great way to fail fast is to make a ton of promises about a new product release or big event, or better yet a commission or bonus that never comes. Nothing cools momentum more than false hopes and dashed promises.

5) Be disorganized. Be sure that the corporate office seems frazzled and out of touch and give the impression at all times that the left hand doesn’t know what the right is doing. That is sure to cause anxiety in the field. Push hard to not have answers and make sure you never make a decision on anything.

6) Hire people with massive egos. Staff the corporate office entirely with people who hold themselves in the highest esteem, then watch the sparks fly! Follow that by bringing in “huge” field leaders who care little about your company, distributors or product and whose only driver is making themselves money. Get out of their way and allow them to “own” the field so they can hold you over a barrel and dictate how the company is run. This way, your company will be run by independent contractors with rampant conflicts of interest. Brilliant!

7) Be sure to release an indecipherable comp plan and then change it midstream, sending the field in a tizzy about their pay. This common technique is very effective in killing direct selling companies and should prove to be an excellent last nail in the coffin.

Adhere to the above and you too can find yourself successful in leaving the industry, forever. Of course, I don’t actually know anyone who wants to follow the above path, but unfortunately too many unwillingly do.

If epic failure is not what you want and legacy is more your style, drop me a line.

Many happy landings!

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