Network marketers are just like everyone else. Yes, sometimes we make mistakes! The only problem with making mistakes as a network marketing entrepreneur is that when we do, our businesses suffer.
As a business owner we have to take 100% responsibility for all our mistakes. There are no employees or bosses to blame. The good news is, you can easily avoid many of these mistakes.
Lets take a look at the 5 most common mistakes (I personally have made them all) and how to avoid them in your own business.
Common Mistake #1: Operating Without A Plan
As a network marketer you still need to have a business plan. Forming one and sticking to it is actually your primary goal. Business experts in all different markets recommend that you spend close to 25% of your time on your business plan. You will struggle without a consistent plan you can follow on a daily basis.
You must also make sure that your plan is malleable, and that through analysis over time, you will be able to make the necessary changes to it quickly and efficiently.
So how to you make sure you have a plan? You create one. You take the time to sit down and formulate it.
As you create your business plan you will need to address, at minimum, who the audience is for your offer, who your competition is and what it is they are currently doing, what your personal vision and mission is, how your product or service fits into this vision and mission, and how you plan on marketing this product or service.
Also, once you have a basic plan set, you will want to schedule some time into your business plan to address the plan itself. You will need to adjust, make changes, and add or subtract things over time. Your business plan should not remain static, or your business will become stagnant.
Common Mistake #2: Managing VS Leading
When you first start your business it makes sense that you will be the one doing everything. You will need to create your plan, build the necessary marketing materials to generate leads and implement your plan, and then manage your business associates and customers. However, as your business begins to grow and you start developing a positive cashflow, doing everything yourself is not going to make good sense any longer.
You don't, for example, spend all your time invoicing product, creating sales letters and advertisements, or doing SEO work on your websites if your time would be better spent simply taking orders and signing up new business associates by phone.
This is the difference between managing and leading.
Leaders focus on what they do best and stick with it. Managers try to do a little bit of everything and try to manage the time as best as they can. Leaders recognize that to lead their business they need to let other experts deal in their areas of expertise while they deal in theirs. Leaders are focused on building a team of people, all experts in their chosen fields, and then letting them do what they do best to help grow the business as a whole.
This may mean you need to do something as simple as hire a VA (Virtual Assistant) to check up on your customers and make sure they have everything they need.
Maybe you need to let one of your new business partners host your opportunity calls. They may be a better speaker and people may enjoy listening and learning from them more than you.
At some point, you are going to have to adopt the mindset of a leader to ensure continued growth in your network marketing business.
Common Mistake #3: Lack of A System
All successful network marketers who do this full time have some system in place to keep themselves productive. You can use a calendar or some type of complex task software to keep up with your daily goals. It can also be something as simple as a sheet of paper.
At the end of the day I look over what I have accomplished for that day, and on a simple sheet of paper I write out what I want to get done for the next day. I then prioritize my list with what is most important at the top, followed by the lesser important tasks. I then attempt to get as many of my appointed tasks done the next day. Whatever I do not get done that day goes at the top of the list for the following day.
The point isn't what kind of system you use. The point is to use whatever it takes to keep yourself focused, organized and productive.
Common Mistake #4: Taking On Too Much (Overextending)
When you start to experience success in your business it is only natural to want more success. This is a great drive to have. You always want to increase business and strive to do better everyday. Just be careful not to bite off more than you can chew. It is tempting to use some of your profits to start other projects.
These other projects come in many forms. Maybe you start a new marketing and sales funnel for a new product. Maybe you partner with someone else on a similar business that you feel is a great addition to your current business.
Doing this all sounds good in theory, especially if your previous actions have resulted in a steady stream of profit, but unfortunately you are allowing your focus to be splintered in different directions. Starting even one new project too early can be disastrous for your current business.
You see, the first splintering of your focus that happens is always the biggest. One new project or plan, in addition to your current business, immediately cuts your time in half. You immediately lose 50% efficiency on both projects.
The new project is already going to get only 50% of your time. That 50% loss in efficiency and focus can mean more than a 50% loss in income. It could kill your business before you really even get it going.
So what is the cure for those who tend to overextend? The solution is simple. You don't take on any new project that you cannot devote 100% of your time too. If this means you can begin to build up another leg in your downline and devote 100% of your time to it, then do it. That is not what I am talking about here. I am mainly talking about those who see some success in their company and then jump into another deal so soon after. Just don't do it. It is always much easier to increase profits in an already profitable business than to try and start something new.
Common Mistake #5: Misplaced Trust
No, I am not talking about getting involved in scams or being taken advantage of by unscrupulous advertising agencies. What I am talking about here is misplaced trust. It means that you put your faith, trust, and commitment into people who are not helping you grow your business, or who show no signs of being able to help themselves. A big part of this crowd are those who join you in a business and then expect you to do everything for them.
But lazy business partners are not the only people you need to watch out for. You don't want to put time and effort into anyone or anything who is not going to directly help you to grow your business. I am not talking about what you do in your personal relationships but what you do with your business relationships.
Before you make the decision to enter into a business relationship with anyone, you need to make sure the relationship is going to help you grow your business. Make sure you set goals for your business associates as well as ad agencies you may use to advertise your products and services. Track and evaluate the success you have or do not have and make adjustments when needed.
This may mean you stop spending time helping a downline member who is unwilling to help themselves. Or you may need to stop dealing with an advertising agency who can't seem to get back to you in a timely manner to your important questions.
If you've already made one or more of these common mistakes, don't be too hard on yourself. I have made each and every one of these mistakes multiple times. It takes experience to make better decisions. You don't just start your own business and instantly become entrepreneur of the year. You can easily survive these mistakes as long as you learn from them. They can also lead you to bigger and better opportunities. They have for me.
If you are not making mistakes you are likely not striving hard enough to reach your goals. You will have little failures along the way. Embrace them and use them to grow.
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