Let me tell you a story from years ago.
Once upon a time I was in kindergarten. Our teacher took us to the school library for the “tour". We all sat quietly with our hands folded in our laps, “Indian style" and listened intently to the instructions the school librarian intoned as to the proper use and care of our school's library books.
When she was finished, we were directed to look around the library and select a book from the “kiddie" shelves. You know the books - they sit lower to the ground (at approximate eye level for Kindergardners crawling around on the floor), are filled with colorful pictures, and very few words. They're about an eight of an inch thick - and most of that is the binding and cover.
Well, call me an overachiever if you must, but I ran straight for Charlotte's Web. I had heard the story, seen the cartoon, and really really wanted to read the book.
My teacher grabbed my hand as if I was stealing from the cash register.
"What are you doing? Our books are over here, with the other children. "
"But I really want to read Charlotte's Web!"
"You can't read that! It's too hard for you. "
"Yes I can read it. Please!?"
So my teacher, unimpressed, opened the book randomly to a page in the middle of the book and invited me to read.
And I guess she'd never heard a 5 year old read from Charlotte's Web before. I was ultimately allowed to read any book in the library - so long as I could prove to the teacher I was capable. Eventually, she just let me check out any book I wanted. And I checked out as many books as I could. I still do.
I'm an avid reader. I love the written word and appreciate how difficult it is for authors to craft a sentence that not only educates and entertains, but conveys the precise message that they are trying to make. To this day, I'm constantly reading one book or another - usually several at one time.
What are you reading?
Jim Rohn was quoted as saying that wealthy people have big libraries and poor people have big televisions. If it's true, then I'm bound to be a bazillionaire.
Books feed the mind, enabling the development of neural pathways, stimulating imagination and creating new possibilities where once there may have been none.
What does that mean to you as a network marketer? Are you really asking that question? Quick, check the size of your library and compare it to your television.
As I scan my book shelves, there are dozens of training manuals, books on sales and closing techniques, books about mental focus, and achieving goals. There are at least thirty books I know I've ready at least ten times, and hundreds more I couldn't tell you how many times I've read them because I've lost count. Many are highlighted, dog eared, underlined, written in, or otherwise “mutilated" for my reading and educational pleasure.
It's like taking a snapshot of a part of my brain. The books on my shelves are a direct reflection of what I've been feeding my brain.
And then there are the audio and video tapes that I own. I'm not talking about the motivational, pump you up claptrap that your MLM upline sells to you. That's a profit center, not a knowledge base. I'm talking about valuable, tangible learning materials. Hours of intensive training, knowledge and a bit of inspiration that come from the masters of their industries: masters of sales and marketing, human potential, internet marketing, copywriting, website development and more.
If I lost my mind today, I could pick up any one of those treasures and begin again. Because those books, tapes and videos represent hours of investment in my mind, in myself and in my future.
By comparison, I think I have a 27" television. I'm not sure. I don't watch it much any more. My kids have kind of taken over the remote control.
And that's fine by me.
I'm too busy learning about new internet marketing strategies or business building techniques. My focus is on learning the best ways to write sales copy and closing techniques for my clients. It's more important to me to understand the most effective ways to cultivate customer relationships than what's happening on the latest episode of ER - is that even on anymore?
What's on your bookshelf? Do you even have a bookshelf? When I look at the books I own, it only scratches the surface of all the books I've read at the library, or borrowed from friends, etc. Where are your treasures? What are you learning? How are you growing your business?
In Network Marketing, you can't just focus on setting appointments, closing sales and praying for the best. It takes focus, dilligent effort and constant improvement of your craft. It means reading about others who've been successful and applying what you've learned to improve yourself. In the automotive industry they call it kaizen: continual incremental improvement.
The more you learn, the more you earn. Take a look at your bookshelf, your tv and your paycheck. See a correlation? What are you going to do about it?
After nearly 10 years in Direct Sales, Lisa Young stopped listening to her up-line and started seeking professional sales and marketing wisdom from the far corners of big business. Today Lisa offers ready-to-use insights, tips and inspiration to others in the Home Party Plan community looking to run their business like a business and achieve success. Lisa's free monthly newsletter “PartyOn!" features articles from a business perspective designed to help MLM reps reach their booking, sales and recruiting goals. You can sign up for the newsletter or purchase her book at http://www.HomePartySolution.com