By Len Clements © 2005
| If you haven’t been following this series you should really get the back issues and study up on your opponent. Not your opponent who’s trying to enroll your prospect into their opportunity, but your opponent who’s trying hard to make sure no one ever enrolls anyone into their opportunity!
For what ever reason, there are a number of folks out there who are anti-MLM. In my experience, I’ve found most have a negative opinion of this business because they’ve been told to. Someone else they know, usually someone who has failed at it, formed this negative opinion and they’ve chosen to adopt it as their own. And when they gain the strength of mind to form their own opinion, based on their own investigation, the negativity usually evaporates.
Then there are those more passionate Anti-MLM Zealots, like Robert FitzPatrick (author of the books “False Profits” and “Pyramid Nation”) who at least try to go beyond just anecdotal evidence in making their case against network marketing. I explained why he was wrong in the last three issues. And then there’s guys like Dean Van Druff (author of the article “What’s Wrong With Multilevel Marketing”) who openly admit they’ve performed virtually no investigation into the subject matter at all. His was a “theoretical” analyses. In other words, he guessed at it. I explained why he guessed wrong in the first segment of this series. In a future segment I’ll deconstruct the prolific anti-MLM efforts of Jon Taylor. Jon’s case is an odd one. He actually claims he was “successful” in MLM, yet still claims none of you will be.
Behind The Smoke & Mirrors – Ruth Carter
So now we come to Ms. Ruth Carter. Ruth is a rare breed of Anti-MLM Zealot in that she not only, God forbid, actually participated in MLM, she was genuinely burned by it. As her story goes, which she’s chronicled in her book “Behind the Smoke & Mirrors,” she joined Amway back in 1982 after being invited to a few meetings. She recounts her feelings of curious apprehension, and how she had wondered why the speaker at one meeting was driving such a beat up old car when he was supposed to be so successful? Why was he serving store bought cookies and drinks in Styrofoam cups? Why was his wife, who was obviously home, never present? Why was there such “ludicrous” passion and excitement over a company that just sold some “basic household and personal care items, and supplied name brand product through a catalog”? However, it was not until about seven years later (of her 13 “core” years in the business) that she finally “neglected to leave my brain at the door” and started to look critically at her experience.
“If you sponsor others, you have an obligation to train and motivate them whether or not they choose to buy Business Support Material. All distributors are free to change their volume of purchase of such items, to cancel standing orders, or to cease such purchases at any time without threats, pressure, or retaliation.”
Ruth completely acknowledges all this, and the provision that anyone who sells such tools must agree to buy them back within 180 days, yet it appears to have made no impression on her at all. She claims this provision is “completely ignored by distributors in the field.” Her evidence? Two e-mails she received from “disillusioned” ex-distributors.