Monday, January 23, 2006

You Are Not A Loser

It is simple to understand that this is a volume based business, but what drives the volume? People, right? Being able to find and involve people that want to do volume and be a part of the business team is what helps a business grow. Hence, someone is going to have to talk to people to let them know a) what you're doing, and b) find out if they would like to do it as well. Here's the thing (and hopefully your upline has already told you this,) you are not looking for any one individual person. Therefore, someone deciding not to get involved with your business is not a "loser." Hopefully as you share this business with people, you do just that - share it. For those that understand and succeed in this enterprise, this business is the shortcut. To try and circumvent it even more by pushing people or trying to sell the business will usually result in you feeling like that person that just said "no thanks" is a loser.

The honest truth is that I don't want everyone to say "yes" and want to be a part of my business team. We need people that choose different paths in life so that all of society's needs/wants can be met. If everyone "got in" and got free, who would make cars? Who would deliver the babies? Who would manufacture products? I contact, invite, and show the plan with one focus: to check the person's temperature. In essence, I'm sticking a thermometer in their mouth saying "are you interested in more income?" "Are you interested in this opportunity?" "Do you want to do what you're doing for the rest of your life?" Etc. I am actually relieved when someone tells me "no thanks." It keeps me from being strung along by someone who really isn't interested and I can move forward. Building this business is more than just helping 6 groups maintain 7500pv for 6 months in a fiscal year. It, like anything worthwhile, takes a commitment to achieve success and is not a walk in the park. It's easier to build than trying to become a neurosurgeon, but it's not necessarily data entry, either.

People say "no" for a number of reasons, but the main two are timing and relatability. What about those two reasons would make someone a loser for declining the opportunity? Neither one. Had I been offered this business when I was 20 or 21, I probably would have turned it down - the timing wasn't right. Had I been offered the business by someone other than I was, I may have turned it down - the relatablity wouldn't have been there. Would it have made me a loser? Not a chance. The business in itself is simple and makes sense - buy from yourself, tell other people about it, learn how to build this type of business from the available mentorship program. It's whether you're at a point in your life that you want to commit to doing what it takes or whether the people offering the opportunity are people you see yourself wanting to work with. (I'll get into the difference between individuals who are in the business and the business itself another time.) What IBO's hopefully understand is that person that tells you "no" today, may be approached by either another IBO or you again in a year when timing is right. It's vital that you respect people's choices so that they have the right impression.

I don't think people would dwell so much on the person who said "no" if they were willing to talk to as many people as it takes to accomplish what they want. I've got my whole life to find 6 people that want to be business owners with this opportunity. There are now two gentlemen in the Winters organization that took 20 years to accomplish that. One worked for UPS and the other was a car salesman. I have no idea what they made in those jobs, or what they'll make as Diamonds, but I know neither of them goes to a day job anymore and they haven't for a long time. I would suspect that they'll make more as Diamonds then they did in their day jobs. Do the next hundred "no's" even matter? I've gone through a few hundred so far, what's a few more going to do? And if I see you and contact you and your response is "no thanks," I'll tell you I wish you all the best, I'll really mean it, and I'll move on.


Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Why Should I Listen To You?

I would rather not have the biggest portion of what ends up happening at The IBO Chronicles to be math, but I know that you may have been introduced to this business by someone that you met at a gas station or in a store, or maybe by someone that you were friends with 5 or 10 years ago that called you out of the blue. Forming or rekindling a friendship that involves leadership that begins in this manner can lead you to wonder why you should listen to what they have to say. The biggest question that a lot of new people usually have is, "what are you going to get out of me (doing Eagle volume, attending this event, being on standing order, etc.?) " I know it was my biggest question. I knew my sponsor briefly (about a month) before I approached him about the business. That's right, he didn't contact me, I contacted him. Even though I felt that because of the nature of our daytime relationship (our positions on the org chart at work) he would be pretty daring to suggest I do anything that would harm me financially, I still questioned. It's a good, legitimate question, albeit the wrong one. When I started thinking about the 4% checks and running some numbers I understood that the right question was/is, "what am I going to get out of me (doing Eagle volume, attending this event, being on standing order, etc.?") No tirades about being a selfish society folks, lets just be practical - if you're going to commit to someone, why should you? Why should what they tell you be ironclad and in your best interest and not just theirs?

Before I get into this, let me say that I don't know everyone's upline and maybe your upline is hoping that you are their financial link and not the other way around. If your upline is trying to keep you from going 4000pv because they aren't 6000's yet and they're afraid of losing that 3% bonus from your volume, I would hope you at least consider finding your next highest GROWING upline and getting their help. I believe that the Quixtar guidelines have some wording about the necessity of integrity from your sponsor and upline. At the same time, I hope that you are wise enough to understand that the opportunity is good enough that even if you're having trouble getting help, you can still get the job done. Let me also say that I am not a math guru or a financial specialist, so I may forget to carry the two, but I'll double check my math to be sure.

What's the concept? Create a consistent 7500pv producing pipeline of business and teach others that want to create a consistent 7500pv business to do the same, right? The intention is to create a win-win situation for you and your sponsor because you will make between $2-3K/month according to the plan and your upline will get a 4% cut of your volume, paid by the corporation, for helping you. "But isn't 22 a bigger number than 4? If my sponsor is already at 25% and I'm just at 3%, doesn't the percentage difference drop if my business grows?" Here's a bare-bones example: you're at 25% return on your purchases and your downline is at 3%. You do get a 22% cut off of that business, but it's 22% of approximately $250 - which is a whopping $55.

You're at 25% return, your sponsored IBO is at:
3%(100pv) Your return is 22% of approx. $250 = $55
6%(300pv) Your return is 19% of approx. $750 = $142.50
9%(600pv) Your return is 16% of apporx. $1500 = $240
12%(1000pv) Your return is 13% of approx. $2500 = $325
15%(1500pv) Your return is 10% of approx. $3750 = $375
18%(2500pv) Your return is 7% of approx. $6250 = $437.50
21%(4000pv) Your return is 4% of approx. $10,000 = $400
23%(6000pv) Your return is 2% of approx. $15,000 = $300

The next step is achieving the 25% level in which the corporation will then pay you a 4% check on the sponsored groups volume. If the group did 7500 points on the nose at the $2.50/pv approximation, your 4% check is about $750. So the 4% check you would be paid for helping someone else reach the 7500 point level is better than any of the checks along the way. Note to remember: if you haven't created at least 2,500 pv outside of that group, don't go looking for the 4% check. In other words, there's no welfare here. You'll need to help more than just one person. That should be a positive.

With that break down explained, why on Earth would you do anything to "trick" someone in your group? Why would you lie to them about anything? Why would you ask someone to do something today that will only come back to haunt you? If you lie to someone who is at 600pv in your group and they find out about it, why would or should they trust you enough to follow your instruction about anything? Why would you give your downline any advice that would put them in a financial position to not be able to handle the basics of the business?

Retention is a humongous goal in this business and we talk about it all the time. Open meeting leaders are concerned about who is staying for training and who is back for second looks. The goal is to not have to continually sponsor in width ("revolving door business.") If you help peoople get started and you're dishonest, cheat them or give them horrendous financial advice, and they stuck at 1000pv forever, they aren't going to stay in. That's why your upline's goal is to give you the advice that is in the best interest of your long term success.

Friday, January 06, 2006

So How Much Does It Really Cost?

I know that there are some prospective IBO's that will find this blog someday, and there are probably some current IBO's that don't know how much it really costs them and finally, there are some "former" IBO's that stopped building the business because they thought the investment into building a business was to great for the return. Well, I'm just going to break it down so that we're all together on this.

First is the issue of getting started properly. To me, a proper start is registering with Quixtar (about $50,) getting the publications (about $20,) getting on CommuniKate (about $31) and placing your first order (varies.) If your team provides any type of educational starter pack (CD's, list builders, books,) I would suggest getting that also (probably between $45 and $75.) Why would you want to start behind the eight ball? The typical start-up cost, not counting placing your first order will run somewhere between $100 to $175 depending on whether there is an educational starter pack purchased or not. Look at the cost to start any other business on the planet. What would it cost to even build your own website with sales and tracking capabilities? This opportunity gives you access to create income right off the bat. I have had IBO's create the Member/Client volume in their first two weeks to reimburse themselves for the investment they made to get started plus extra. Registering with Quixtar is an annual cost and CommuniKate is monthly. I'll save why CommuniKate is so vital for another day, but it ties into the post on the system that I made earlier.

Here's the breakdown of other expected first year expenses an IBO is likely to incur depending on how their education system handles functions, etc.:
Open meetings - $5 X 52 weeks = $260
Major Functions - $100 X 4 major functions = $400
Bus Charter Contribution - $100 X 4 trips = $400
Fall Leadership - $30
Team Meetings - $10 X 4 = $40
Seminar/Rallys - $10 X 2 = $20
Various Other Events (Christmas parties, spa days, etc.) - $50
Standing Order - $7.50 X 7 = $52.50/week or $2,730/year but I'll make it an even $3,000 to account for taxes, double CD's (once a month) and the book of the month
Gas is really a subjective and I say this because unless you were a total homebody before the business, you were driving somewhere on those nights that you are now using to build the business. The driving that I used to do from bar to bar and from friends house to friends house has been traded for driving to open meetings. Not everyone has to "drive the miles" right off the bat. For arguement's sake I'll add in another $30/week in gas for a total of $1,560/year.

That total is $5,760 for the entire year. Plus your start-up cost. All of which are tax deductions in some way or another. I won't count what you order because you have to buy stuff anyway. What business do you know of that you can run on less than $6,000 per year? Not $6,000 all at once. Not one lump sum here and one lump sum there. Less than $6,000 TOTAL. That's less than $500/month. If you didn't recieve one check until you went Q12, you would still be in the black as soon as the first year of Q12 income came in as long as it happened within your first 9 years. More clearly:

Q12 total income as shown in the plan = approximately $50,500
$50,500 divided by $6,000/year = 8.4

That doesn't count the fact that you will make money along the way and because you were accountable to your upline when it came to standing order, as a platinum you are probably receiving a tool break so your income is even better. Yes, I said it. A tool break.

I guess it's time to eliminate another weak internet argument. The supply side of the franchise system is one that you can profit off of and so is the education side. Again, thinking of McDonalds, you do understand that part of your $1.25 million goes to your education, right? You understand that the people teaching you at Hamburger U. aren't there pro bono, right? All the materials you use to teach and train your staff at your McDonald's are not given to you, they have to be paid for. Well, the same is true here. "Foul" some may call (and put up sites ad nauseum to complain.) "But the IBO has no end user to market to outside of the business when it comes to CD's and tapes." That's a true statement, but I don't want to buy your college calculus book either and I don't see anyone crying foul over the $150 they drop on those things. And they make it through whole semesters without even breaking the binding.

Here's the best part though: by participating in the educational side, by being on standing order and staying accountable to your upline, when you go platinum you actually qualify to receive a break on the cost you have to pay. At this point in your business, you probably have enough people in your group that you may need to hire an assistant to separate the educational material or you are at least deserving of being compensated for your time. None of my line of sponsorship has ever charged me for their help with showing a plan for me, never sent me a bill for counseling on how to run my business and never will. The least I can do is be responsible enough to want to learn some things on my own time and attempt to create a thirst for knowledge in the business owners I'm looking to work with. I'm excited about the income I'll see from tool flow and speaking engagements when the time comes. This is free enterprise, not socialism; the qualified are asked to speak. Spots are earned but they're open to anyone who wants to put in the work. That's not fru-fru, nicey-nice talk. I've heard as much in qualified meetings that I've snuck into with big pins.

Just remember - if you want this to be a hobby, it can be a very expensive one. If you are in this thing because you really need the extra income, do more than just order the CD's and books. If you read them, you will act. If you're not successful in year one, you've got a ways to go before you've proven this "thing doesn't work."


Why Tools? aka The Reason For A "System"

There's a definite philosophy that goes into showing the plan. Why things are done in the order they are, why the person seeing the plan is asked what they would do with extra income, why disintermediation is explained and why the McDonald's example is given. It seems to be that some people believe that having a philosophy and vision behind how a plan is shown is because the attempt it to attempt, trick or deceive the potential IBO into "buying in" to what the speaker is saying. All I can say to that is this: have you ever interviewed for a job? Is it off base to think that the interviewer had a reason, maybe a vision behind asking the questions they asked? Are you aware of the interview process for prospective NFL pros coming out of college? Teams are looking for athletes that will fit in with the vision they have for the organization. If you never played a Cover 2 defense in college and all Tampa plays is a cover 2, they're probably going to discuss the philosophy of the Cover 2 and ask you questions to gauge your ability to catch on or your desire to want to catch on. The process is no different when you're being shown the plan.

I tell you that to tell you this: There is a reason that Hamburger University is emphasized as an integral part of the McDonald's franchise system. Go to the business section of any bookstore and look for books on franchising. Seek out any entrepreneurial magazine with franchising information on it. The story is the same - you have to be educated on the franchise system you are getting involved in, regardless of what you've done before buying the business. If you don't want to go to Hamburger University, you don't get to own a McDonalds. Period. Now, getting involved with Quixtar will not require spending between one and four months training before you can begin your business. The training is on-going and allows you to be up-and-running on day one. However, without it, you have about as much a chance of success as buying a McDonalds and skipping Hamburger U. You'll figure some of it out, but you'll have no idea what it takes to properly run it so that it is continually successful. Besides, why would you want to figure it out all on your own? The whole point of getting involved with a franchise is the fact that all it takes is duplicating the successful techniques of those that came before you.

It can be understandable that after years of seeing business being defined as involving a brick and mortar building, employees and stocked shelves, grasping the concept that this opportunity is a legitimate business takes some personal evolvement. That is the realism of s-curve economics. The way business is done is continually changing. More and more people telecommute to work than ever before. There are more home-based business than ever before. This is a real life business people. As such, there are going to be expenses, and your education is one of them. Considering the fact that by taking advantage of the education system can make you a multimillionaire, I would call it an investment over an expense, though. College is an investment. B-school is an investment. Listening to a CD buy an Emerald or Diamond in the business is an investment. Reading from a "personal growth" book is an investment. I just assumed that unless I did what was asked of me by my sponsor, unless I followed the Eagle steps, I had only myself to blame for a lack of success. I can't count the number of times that I stuck around a night owl just a little longer, or stayed up chasing bigger pins around at a function and heard something said that made me thankful I was there. Heard something that I was able to take and implement in my own business. If I'm not there, I don't hear it and I miss out. Quixtar didn't put on that event. BWW did.

The biggest question I get asked when I show the plan is, "what do I do now?" People want to see how the business works. They want to know who is on the business team they are on. They want to know who they are getting involved with. Quixtar provides the best, easiest to use online shopping site I've ever seen. The Ditto program is outstanding and their customer service is exemplary. But they don't provide anything to answer the "wants" expressed by most new people. Yes, everyone wants to see the site, but the next question is always, "now what?" Without BWW, the Tuesday meetings don't exist. The credible upline doesn't exist. The thought process behind how to actually build this business doesn't exist.


Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Blog Guidelines and Intro

Well, it's about time. As the title suggests, I am an Independent Business Owner who is affiliated with the Quixtar business opportunity and the Britt World Wide education system. Before the blog gets fired up and running too far, I have to lay down some basic guidelines and expectations so that you know what to expect when you come here. The goal of this blog is to simply share my experiences, growth and what I am learning through this tremendous business opportunity and be another positive voice backing the business online. I will be sharing some stories, some of the advice I am given and the progress being made. In no way is this meant to be an advice column for any current IBO's. Please seek your upline for advice on how to grow your business. They have your best interests at heart. If you've found this blog and you're contemplating whether or not you want to qualify for the team, I'm biased, but hopefully you can read this and feel safe knowing that the Quixtar/BWW opportunity is business ownership/mentorship and should be treated with the appropriate respect.

First and foremost, I am not here to pander for prospects, future business owners, or whatever term you want to use, be they strangers, friends or family. In an effort to avoid any controversy I will not be revealing my name, my line of sponsorship or anything else that will give away my identity. I'll refer to my sponsor as "SP," my upline (his sponsor) as "UP" and my mentor as "MR." My sponsor is a Silver in the business, my upline is a platinum and my mentor is a qualified Emerald. Each of them has a booming, growing busines that isn't built solely on the back of their downline. They have tremendous structure and are examples of how to build this business properly. I also will not be sharing what city or state I live in. I will however say that I am currently at 1500 pv and growing. I've been in business for a little over a year and I'm married, however since I will be the sole contributor on here, expect a mixture of "I's" and "we's" from time to time.

I want to get this straight also, I am not here to debate whether this business works or not. I am in and have been around long enough to know that it is as real as any other business out there. If you have attempted to build this business and quit, I wish you the best with whatever it is you're doing with your life, however my blog is not the place for you to come and trash me, the business, or anyone who is here with good intentions. I will not necessarily delete any negative posts because I think honest discussion is good, but I do reserve the right to delete anything that in my best opinion, goes to far. If that's too vague for you, start your own blog or go post with the other complainers somewhere else. This business equals an opportunity. There is nothing that the people that have succeeded before me have that I do not or cannot learn. I also don't compare my path to success to anyone elses. Some forthcoming posts will attempt to delineate the reasoning behind this thought process.

I think that's it. I may add some more additional "blog guidelines" as I go, but for now, I think that covers it. I just love what I'm involved in, as well as the people I'm involved with and since I do spend downtime at the j.o.b., I don't see too much issue with sharing. The blog may not go on forever, but I am building this business to Crown Ambassador, and hope that you come along every step of the way. When I break a new pin, either personally or in depth, you'll know about it. When I speak from a stage, you'll know about it. When my wife and I retire, you'll know about it. Enjoy the ride and I wish you the best with your businesses.


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