In our article “Do Not Make Money From Tools“, we advised against getting distracted from your primary business.  But what do you do when you see it happening in your downline?

When people become discouraged with their lack of progress, they will often lose focus.  The sensible plan is to look within for the problem, and develop the skills needed for success.  The easier path is to find someone or something to blame.  It’s usually the sponsor or the upline or the tools the team is using.

Those tools may have a long proven history of success, but because your team members cannot make them work, they may criticize the tool rather than learn the skills necessary to make them work.  Just as some networkers hop from opportunity to opportunity (the ‘opphoppers’), some networkers jump from tool to tool, looking for something easy and automatic.

At first, it can be viewed as a minor distraction, but if the tool hoppers distract others, it can be destructive to your business, especially if there is cross-recruiting going on.  The tool hoppers will approach distributors in other downlines, often with wildly exaggerated claims of their success.  Getting sidetracked is one thing, but sidetracking others with lies is quite another.

If you are approached by a cross-recruiter, ask them to provide you with references to prove their claims.

You have worked too hard to build your team to stand by quietly and let it happen.  Some fads may quietly pass, but if they don’t, you must take a stand and make a clear statement to your team.  If you are concerned, you can be sure that many others are concerned too, and are looking for leadership.

We encourage people to try everything and anything they can to build their businesses.  It makes us all better as we share our results.  We try different things ourselves, but we don’t take it to our team unless it works, and we don’t approach people in other downlines with the tools.

The problem we see is that people get distracted by the tool and focus on it as a money maker, rather than as a tool.  It’s like a house builder who tries a new hammer, doesn’t build a house with the hammer, but goes into hammer sales to other house builders.

Soon, everyone is selling hammers and no houses are getting built.

We do not object to anyone making money from any affiliate program that they join.  What we don’t like is people promoting those affiliate programs before they are proven, and promoting the programs to people they should not be contacting.  The only people anyone should be contacting is their immediate downline, i.e people personally sponsored.

Your corporate team will soon become aware of the problem, as distributors get reported for breaches of etiquette and violations of policies and procedures.  Check your contract for this typical clause:

Policy violations include, but are not limited to:  Contact with any [Company] distributors not personally sponsored, for the purpose of recruiting them into another competitive marketing endeavor …

We spoke with the President of a well respected MLM company who speaks from thirty five years of experience …

Any time someone focuses on building a tool business, their primary business goes down, not up.  People should avoid crossline recruiting.  It is the cardinal sin of network marketing.  People get hurt by this unethical behavior.

Overall, we’re saying that if people are using a tool, they should be using it OUTSIDE their company in order to grow their primary business.  If they are using it INSIDE their primary business, they are not building their primary business – they are building their tool business, often by contacting people they should not be contacting.

We ask people to prove that the tool works by sponsoring new distributors, and then it makes sense to share the tool to other builders, frontline only.

The whole thing may blow over, but distributors will often cancel their autoships and leave your team to work the tool business.  All you can do is point out the facts, and hope they will be back when they learn that building houses pays better than selling hammers.

Check out the duplicatable tool we’ve been using for years, and learn how you and your team can have Success In Ten Steps.

For thirty five years, Tom ‘Big Al’ Schreiter has been teaching network marketers the basic skills they need to use those tools.  You can learn them easily at Big Al Skills.

Bob and Anna Bassett
Skype bobbassett

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