Your Security is Your Ability to Perform - Larry Ward, Herbalife
Larry Ward first got involved in Network Marketing when he heard about it from his brother as an Assistant Branch Manager for a bank. That was 19 years ago, and although he didn't focus on Network Marketing full-time until 1992, Larry still looks back to the night he went over to his brother's house and recalls, "I guess that was the beginning of what changed my life...."
I didn't make a lot of money in my early years in Network Marketing. I kept trying different companies, but I hung in there, and I kept learning. I stayed in banking, did Network Marketing part-time, and started reading everything I could get my hands on, like Think and Grow Rich and The Magic of Thinking Big. I learned that even though I thought I was a competent person, I lacked self-confidence. As a result of my involvement in Network Marketing and the self-improvement, I became a better bank employee-- in fact, I ended up being the top Branch Manager for every bank I ever worked for-- and I attribute that to what I learned through Network Marketing and sales.
In December of `92, I received an audio in the mail from a complete stranger. It focused on being financially free, and even though I wasn't involved in a company at the time, I'd never lost sight of that dream. I was 50 years old, and had considerable debt. Even though I was making a six-figure income at the bank, I was living paycheck to paycheck, like so many American families, so I got excited. I signed up with Herbalife and decided to start a part-time massive action campaign to achieve financial freedom.
The challenges I'd had in the past-- companies going out of business on me, fad products, and most of all my own lack of confidence and taking rejection personally-- were no longer challenges for me. With Herbalife, I knew I'd found a viable company that I could feel great about, and the benefits of all the personal development I'd done had already begun to pay off. I knew that everything was in place for me to succeed, and I was enthusiastic, excited, and focused.
I basically built the business by the telephone and through the mail. I used a lot of direct mail and telephone techniques, conference calls. I was able to match my full-time income by the fourth month. I put my heart and soul into it, and my income grew consistently, so that by the twelfth month in the business, my part-time income was actually more than three times what I was earning at the bank on a full-time basis.
Then, ironically enough, my regional manager came into town that same month to announce that the bank was downsizing-- closing up their local office and laying us all off. So there I was at 50 years of age, getting laid off from a six-figure- income job. Of course, everyone else was really depressed, but I was excited. I told my boss, "You know, this job was getting to be a distraction anyway because the part-time business I started just 12 months ago has grown to a point where I am making more than three times what my full-time job is paying."
At that point, I decided to go full-time with my home-based business and it's been so exciting. This has been my sole source of income now for five years, and I've been a distributor for over six.
I knew that to become successful, I'd need to really focus, and treat my part-time business like a business-- not a hobby. I learned to compress time and take advantage of every free moment that I had. I spent about 20-25 hours per week. My wife supported me, but she didn't get involved in the business herself, so there's hope for those who come into Network Marketing and think they can't be successful without their spouse enrolling, too.
The key thing we do in Network Marketing is take our product, help people get results, and then tell the story. All I did was develop a message that I could share those stories and that success on a massive basis. I helped people get results with our product, and I told their story on conference calls and on audiotapes. I produced massive quantities of the audiotapes and gave them away. I built the business predominantly in the cold market.
In the very early months when I got started, I was actually giving out and mailing between 500 and 1000 tapes a month. Those tapes were a very important part of my success, not only in developing retail business, but also in recruiting. I soon realized that they were also good for training, so I bought tape duplicators so that I could copy the tapes and offer them to my downline. I started doing audiotapes instead of newsletters, because I found that the one thing that builds Network Marketing is emotion. One thing I've learned is that enthusiasm sells, and I got that across more effectively on tape than on paper.
That was another key factor in my success: realizing the importance of providing a support system for my organization. I used conference calls for training, make audiotapes of them, and then mailed them out to those in my downline who couldn't be on the call.
In my first 12 months, I recruited approximately 100 people first level, and the key to my success was that I spent most of my time with the individuals who were serious and teachable. The goal of Network Marketing, of course, is to duplicate yourself through other people. I ended up with a handful of about twelve to fifteen first-level serious people, the rest being half serious, wholesale customers, or full-time retailers.
My success philosophy is: Have a belief in yourself and in your ability to perform, because anybody can be successful at this business. I learned, at a very early stage in Network Marketing, that your only security is your ability to perform. If you develop the skills, nobody can ever take them away from you. The key is believing. Don't let anybody steal your dream. Don't let anybody tell you that you can't do it. Develop a "success consciousness," which means making certain basic principals of success part of your own day-to-day life. Just paying attention to who you associate with, for example-- are the individuals you are associating with going to enrich your life?
Start focusing on what you want to become. Focus on what skills you have, and start working on them. Start seeing yourself as the person you want to be. Start associating with positive people, people who you want to be like. I never gave up in Network Marketing because I liked being around other positive, good people, who also wanted to improve themselves, improve their lifestyle, and do more for their family.
The best thing about Network Marketing is the joy that I get from helping other people. I improve their health and their financial wealth, and I love doing it. I have total freedom to associate with whomever I want, get up when I want, come and go as I want. I now put about four hours a day into my business. I'm still prospecting and recruiting and building, but most of my time is put into helping other people succeed.
LARRY WARD is an Independent Distributor and International President's Team Member with Herbalife. He has been involved in Network Marketing off an on for 17 years, and has been with Herbalife for six years. He lives with his wife Carolyn in Columbus, OH.
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Reprinted with permission from Upline, Ward - Success Story - June 1999, 888-UPLINE-1, http://www.upline.com