Category Archives: LYnn’s Stories

That wall behind you

Recall your most recent company regional event or convention.

Have you squinted at slides with tiny writing or low contrast, spending your brainpower trying to understand them (instead of paying attention to what the speaker is saying)?

That’s me.

I wear glasses and have them checked every year.

But at a convention or training session, I’m not necessarily in a good spot to read the visual projections of what you prepared. I might be at the back of the room or over to the side, craning my neck to see around the head of the person in front of me.

My eyes are tired and my brain is racing from all the excitement of the event. Both of those conditions make the eyeball-to-brain-comprehension connection move more slowly.

When these things happen, I don’t hear what you say and I’m not seeing what’s on the screen. It’s a double loss for me, and I feel disappointed. I was hoping to glean your insights!

Speakers, please don’t let your visual and verbal efforts go to waste. Here are some tips for preparing the “slides” for your next presentation.

And a request? Please put the slide up as soon as possible! Consider that it takes the audience about 3 times as long to read and begin to comprehend it… (and I know by the time you go on stage, you’re sick of seeing those slides… but please let us audience members revel in looking at them).

Tip #1 for the audience: if there is information you want to remember from a slide, take handwritten notes if possible. You will retain the information longer.

Tip #2 for the audience: If the speaker is moving too quickly for handwritten notes: take a photo of the slide. (Turn off the camera flash! 😉  )

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #thatwallbehindyou #speaking #slides

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Lessons from a 1980’s shopping mall

The 1980’s was the heyday of indoor shopping malls in the United States. The closest mall to our house had more than 80 stores including 5 major department stores, so there were plenty of choices.

(In this post I will change the names of the stores, for copyright’s sake.)

We knew if we wanted something artsy and ahead-of-the-trend, we shopped in Solomon’s.

Prom or career-defining business interview coming soon? Hit the racks at Cube for clothes that would impress.

If Cube was too expensive, we combed the selection at Seaform, which had still-very-nice business wear, and even a small “Tall Ladies” section.

Janice’s had “knock-offs” (imitations) of several designers displayed at Cube and Seaform.

And if we simply wanted a basic pair of blue jeans, we headed to Deerfield.

The gist of it: every store had different clothes and fit different budgets. There was something for everyone, and we knew which store would likely have what we wanted.

By the early 1990’s, I noticed Solomon’s and Deerfield kept their unique identities, but three of major department stores started carrying the same designers. Many of the women’s clothes were identical. Our shopping strategy changed in response.

Was the item likely to be carried by Cube, Seaform, or Janice’s? Head to the store that was likely within budget. Check out the prices and sizes. Now walk into the other two department stores and compare. Walk to the store that had the lowest price for the item, and buy it there.

What happened?

Instead of being unique, the three stores in question offered the same merchandise with no significant differentiation in customer service or perks. So the only thing separating them was price… beyond the possibility of bragging that one “bought it at Cube.”

The stores became interchangeable commodities, and that was their downfall.

Even if that sweater was available at Cube, why would one want to spend more for an identical item? The brand name didn’t justify spending $10-$15 more, in my and most of my friends’ eyes.

We face an identical issue in network marketing, within our companies.

Each independent distributor within a company markets the same products.

So, why would the potential customer buy from YOU?

Price wars among distributors reek of desperation, so steer clear of that.

To stay away from becoming a commodity, do some deep thinking about what makes your distributorship unique.

Here are some ideas.

Do you offer special and memorable customer service? Do you gift wrap physical items? Do you donate to charity for every item purchased? Do you thank your clients in a way that they enjoy and remember? Do you remember and honor your clients for the special occasions in their lives?

Remember, your worth is much more than the sale price of the items you market.

Become comfortable with being you, express that uniqueness in the way you take care of your customer’s needs, and that will build a loyal customer base.

People appreciate being appreciated.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #networkmarketing #shopping #lessons #lessonsfroma1980sshoppingmall #unique #appreciation

A leap made with eyes wide open

In March my husband accepted a permanent position in Germany.

We discussed such a move for several years, and then a fabulous job opening became available in January.  So we jumped at the chance.

After our transatlantic flight in late July, we are settling into life in southwest Germany, and I continue to run my network marketing business which is incorporated in the USA.

I will be posting stories about networking in a new language and other business topics in the coming months!

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #leap #networkmarketing

Build the friendship

Yesterday I was driving and wondering whom I should call, just to say hi.

“Joy K.” was my brain’s answer. She is a distributor in my company, but not in my organization.

I pushed the earbud into my right ear and voice-dialed the call.

She was in the grocery store when I reached her. And she was pleasantly startled to hear from me.

“You made my day!” was one of her comments.

Readers, remember that the people IN your company are part of your network. What are you doing to create friendships and trust within your company? Even though you are “competitors,” you also have a common cause to spread the word about your company.

If your company policies allow it, I challenge you to reach out just to say hi and build a friendship with a distributor who is NOT in your organization… some one from whom you receive no income from their activities.

If you are not allowed to do that. then reach out in friendship to a distributor in your organization whom you rarely talk with… perhaps someone 2 or 3 layers deep in your team. You might not seem like a big deal to yourself, but to them you are likely That Famous Person They Only See In Their Genealogy Or Hear On A Conference Call.

And whomever you talk to, avoid talking about business. Ask them what event they are looking forward to this summer, their favorite summer food, what movie they’ve seen lately. See if you can find some social-life common ground.

Build the friendship. It just might make their day.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #crosspollination #appreciation #buildthefriendship

Can I touch it?

An exasperated sigh. The dull thunk of a pen tossed onto a thick stack of paper.

My head snapped up as I watched fingers dart through the meticulously combed rills of Mikey’s dark brown hair, then his head leaned backward and out of sight.

His office chair creaked as I stood up to see better.

“What’s happening?” I quizzed my engineering mentor across the orange cubicle wall.

“Lynn, these numbers are swimming in front of my eyes. I can’t make sense of why this trajectory keeps crashing. I think I need a break.”

I nodded in agreement.

It felt good to stand and stretch. We were putting in long hours preparing a proposal for a new satellite launch, so Mikey was under some pressure to make the mission succeed. As an engineering intern, I was assigned to prepare some of the graphs that would be included in the overhead projector slides.

“With these stacks of papers and the sea of numbers, I’ve lost all perspective of exactly what the vehicle looks like. Let’s go to the high bay assembly building and take a look at the so-called “point mass” we are flying.”

I grinned at the engineering joke. The flight-path-planning computer program pretends the 156 foot (47 m) tall vehicle is a VERY heavy ball that is smaller than your clenched fist. It makes the flight-planning equations easier to calculate, and another department analyzes the flexibility of the true-sized vehicle.

Mikey got a gleam in his eye. “Do you have some close-toed shoes?”

I pointed toward the floor. “Under the desk, just like Tish suggested.”

Mikey smiled and replied, “OK, co-op, put on your tennis shoes and let’s go make an official visit to see the real thing.”

We were chatting animatedly as Mikey swung the heavy doors open and the warm dry slap of air announced yet another perfect sunny day in San Diego.

————————

Working with an intangible concept can be hard on the primal human brain.

Brains are more comfortable with something to touch than with numbers written on a computer screen. If I can pinch it, sniff it, and see it, I can understand what it is. I can assign a monetary value. It becomes “real” to me. And I feel a lot more relaxed.

Does your network marketing, party plan, or direct sales company have products that your clients don’t physically touch? Financial services and computer-generated physical greeting cards are two examples.

Or does the client who purchases it rarely sees the final product, because it is shipped to a third party?

If your situation fits either general case, I strongly recommend you send or give a tangible item directly to the person who’s buying your product. A product sample, a physical card of thanks, or treating them to coffee are some ideas.

You’ll be the refreshing break in the midst of an increasingly-intangible world.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #networkmarketing #partyplan #directsales #touch #rocketscience #coffee

Let it rot

“Just a friendly reminder that you [have] only 1 more day of replay access to the __________________ event videos. Replay access ends on April 6th at 8:30 am Central time. “

This message landed in my email inbox yesterday.

I don’t know about you, but I am somewhat addicted to personal development.

When I read a personal development book, I underline and make notes in the margin. (Thank goodness we can easily afford to buy the books instead of relying on the public library volumes.) When I show up in person to a training session, I am vying for the front row, or as close to the front as possible. When there’s a livestream, I watch as many sessions as I reasonably can and take handwritten notes… then quickly post a summary of the talk in our distributors-only Facebook group.

The event referenced in the email was a 3-day livestreamed seminar with more than 20 presenters. I was learning powerful insights in each of the sessions.

And I was grateful for the month-long access to the full-session recordings. The completeness of the content combined with the length of time to watch lessened my fear-of-missing-out.

And when I was just getting started in this profession, I had a significant fear of that opportunity passing me by.

Here’s how I compensated.

When I was a distributor in my first network marketing company, I let the training get out of hand. I always had another conference call, Saturday “advanced training,” or book. Goodness knows I needed lots of guidance, as I was still developing an entrepreneur’s self-discipline and body of knowledge. But I went too far.

Eventually I allowed myself to understand that I was using those tools to procrastinate from doing the scarier actions: meeting people, calling to set appointments, and asking for the sale.

When I joined my current company 10 years ago I made a decision. I would attend seminars and/or study personal development information, but at a reduced rate. I promised myself to be more honest with myself regarding procrastination. I recognized that the “shiny new object” syndrome gets activated in my brain not by new shoes or the latest technology toy, but by being easily distracted by the new or ‘scarce’ book, seminar, or training session.

And over the past decade I realized that wanting to buy and hold and renew large quantities of such information WAS a flareup of the old “I’m getting passed by” thought process.

When I received that email, I thought back through the past month. I watched about half of the sessions in real time. Then last week I took 2 chunks of time to watch the remaining recordings, knowing the one-month watching deadline was coming soon.

I was confronted with an offer in that email: pay X amount of money to have “lifetime access” to these recordings, or lose access to them forever.

I asked myself two key questions.

  1.  Did I watch and take notes on the specific sections that I was most likely to apply?
  2.  What is the likelihood I will ever watch those sessions again?

The answers:

  1. Yes.
  2. Near zero. (and do I want to ‘hoard’ those materials, even the access to them?)

I chose to let it expire. (and I will gladly register for the next year’s livestream)

Sometimes a forced purge is helpful.

This time it was best to let the offer rot.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #LetItRot #personaldevelopment #networkmarketing #residualincome #email #lifetimeaccess #twoquestions #choosyist

Postscript:

Hoarding information is one way I tried to capture the elusive “secret to success.” It’s elusive because there’s no single such secret. And I realize that feeding my brain with positive and uplifting information is the important thing.

(Yes I will hang onto many of the personal development books I read over the years. This isn’t a call to go so-called ‘minimalist.’ Perhaps it is a call to go ‘choosy-ist.’)  –LS

 

4 lessons and a 9-word question

Learning about financial concepts is crucial for building wealth and staying wealthy. Here’s what I posted on social media earlier this week:

4 Lessons Wealthy People Taught Me

1. An asset pays for itself and creates a monthly net profit.
2. When bankers say, “It’s an asset,” they mean it creates a profit for THEM.
3. Build Automatic Money Generators that don’t require your presence. (a special class of assets)
4. You are financially free when your Automatic Money Generators pay you more than you are spending.

One of my social media friends replied, “How does one create Automatic Money Generators?”

Here’s a little background. We have known each other In Real Life for nearly 10 years. She’s attended parties at our home, we attended her wedding, and we have talked numerous times in person. She’s not simply someone I met online. In the past few weeks she posted a question on social media, and when I responded mentioning a $5 solution, I received some version of “I can’t afford that.”

So I considered her situation and past reactions into my response. I wasn’t going to jump into booking a business presentation with someone who thinks $5 is too much to spend. I decided to start with some basic information and a question to gauge her level of interest.

I sent a private message: “I have just a few minutes to type right now, so this might be an incomplete answer. “Automatic Money Generators” are businesses, real estate, or other investments that generate profits for the owner every month, whether or not the owner shows up for work. The situation is otherwise known as “passive income” and always requires up-front money, energy, education (books or seminars), and time to create. (Like planting an apple tree, nurturing it until it bears fruit, and making sure someone is trimming and fertilizing the tree on an ongoing basis). Net-income producing real estate rentals, real estate tax liens, musicians who have songs on iTunes, and businesses like mine all qualify. Which one of those sounds most interesting to you?”

This launched a back-and-forth via texting, which included my recommendation of a library book to read. She loves to read, so reading a book is not stressful. Also, libraries loan books for free, so the money question is eliminated for this step.

We ended with her promise to look for that book during the library trip next week… and to let me know her opinion of it after she’s finished reading.

So now it’s in her hands.

In some ways she reminds me of a younger me.

One of my husband’s co-workers made an offhand remark about 20 years ago. She mentioned a book about finance that she liked. My husband and I didn’t have an extra $20 to buy our own copy. It was a newly-released book, so there weren’t copies available on the bookshelves of the charity resale stores in our area. We contacted the local library to put our names on the waiting list for that book, and we waited nearly 3 months for our turn to read it.

Reading those pages was a pivotal moment for our understanding of the power of leverage and the differences between self-employment and business systems.

When there’s a will, there’s a way. We waited for then read (I mean devoured) that book and others written by that author. If she’s truly interested in elevating her financial situation, she will find that book and read it quickly. I will discover if she is “coachable” by what she does in this situation.

The next move is hers. Her actions will reveal whether she is ready to move from dreaming to taking action toward a more prosperous future.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #patience #coachable #4lessonsanda9wordquestion #financialknowledge #books