It has been cordial and non-combative – on both sides. Kudos to all. Now, I do think it’s important that people understand that the THEORY of MLM is vastly different from the reality. The theory is what sucked my wife and me into the business. We truly worked the numbers on paper for weeks after we had signed on to our organization.
I am now convinced that those who develop these MLM plans create them in a way that makes them look profitable and achievable. In fact, our program actually changed about halfway through our involvement, SPECIFICALLY to make it look more realistic. The bonuses illustrated in the new plan weren’t as stellar, but the number of recruits required in order to generate a profit was considerably smaller, making it look less intimidating to a new prospect.
Trouble was, even though the plans looked good on paper, neither plan matched reality. Most people, under an MLM system, would never see profitability, and once my wife and I realized this inherent truth in the design, we could not justify getting involved in any other MLM after our first experience.
The theory simply doesn’t translate into reality, and the blame does not fall onto those who believed a deceptive marketing plan propped up by hype. Coupled with “educational” “tools” systems, the entire marketing design is, at best, fatally flawed, and at worst, criminal.
To date, no one has been able to show us an MLM plan that lives up to its hype. (I’ve had one person give it a shot, with an inconclusive result.) At best, an MLM may be able to provide a part-time income for someone, IF he/she can avoid motivational/educational systems and is willing to work VERY hard at making personal sales for that part-time pay.
IMO, this forum needs to be a place where those who experienced MLM first-hand can share their experiences, not just with others who are now out of MLM, but also with those current MLMers and their family members and friends who have questions and doubts. That’s the only way our perspective on the industry can remain fresh and relevant.
BTW, I don’t see self-promotion as a problem, either. On the other hand, self-promotion coupled with insensitivity is usually not looked upon favorably. It’s usually better to choose gifts that do not bring the giver a financial gain.