Category Archives: LYnn’s Stories

Speaking in opposites

Business language can be backwards in its approach.

In a recent industry-wide webinar, I observed people speaking about their businesses.

One person used a word starting with the letter k (a synonym for ending life) and he meant it as a compliment of how well he performed a recent presentation to potential business colleagues.

Another talked about massive growth and used a word beginning with b.

(actual words omitted because I don’t need some search engine flagging my blog as violent)

And the presenter challenged the crowd with a common question: “How bad do you want it?”

These statements got me thinking about how our subconscious mind interprets language.

In personal development books and seminars I learned how the subconscious mind interprets language. It is like a 3 or 4 year old child, taking things literally, regardless of how old we are or how many years of school we attended.

So I started asking myself, “Do we really want to end our businesses? Do we want them to expand so quickly and unsustainably that they disintegrate and burn everything in their vicinity?”

Well, not really. Those words are metaphors for enrolling everyone, or for rapidly expanding growth.

And it’s truly not “bad” to want something… it’s another way of saying I want it STRONGLY.

Scoff if you wish at what seems like verbal nit-picking … but realize the center of motivation and goal setting listens to the literal. Yes, your internal toddler controls your goal-setting.

Consider these alternate phrases:

“I wow’d everyone!” “Momentum!” and “How strongly do you want it?” are three suggested substitutions.

Watch your language… it can program you for success or failure, even inadvertently.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #watchyourlanguage #language #literal #opposites #speaking #speakinginopposites

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Pinching the buds

We planned the garden during the bitter cold days of winter. I had visions of fresh strawberries, so my mom ordered the plants.

After the last frost we broke ground to expand last year’s garden, so we had plenty of room to grow strawberries. Removing sod, hoeing, and loosening the dirt to accept the plants. Watering every evening.

The sweet fruits would be our reward.

Then May arrived, and the plants began to blossom.

Then my mom broke the bad news to my 12-year-old self.

“We have a choice. If we want strawberries this year, we can let the blossoms open and get pollinated. We will have a crop in June.”

I was nodding my head excitedly.

“But.. if we do that, the plants will never get bigger. We will only have small crops, and that won’t be much fun to split a small number of strawberries among the five people in our household. To get a bigger crop, I have to pinch the blooms off… that will force the plant to send out runners, and starting next year we will have a huge crop throughout June.”

I sadly agreed, and it was hard to watch the strawberries not produce any fruit that first year. My friends asked in June, How many strawberries did you get? And when I told them ‘none,’ they asked me, “Why did you bother planting any in the first place? You can get stawberries at the store for a lot less work.”

But during that second summer… I was glad my mom pinched those buds the year before. We had one of the largest strawberry plots in our neighborhood. And plenty of fruit to pick and eat– twice a day– during June, for nearly a decade.

Sometimes in our businesses we want to enjoy the fast fruit. Spending our initial profits (plus more) on a flashy outfit, tech toy, or costume jewelry. Figuring out how to build one-time bonus income to boost our checks so our income equals or surpasses our job paycheck. Deciding what to do to get promoted faster, at the expense of building a solid residual income.

Where in your business activities do you need to “pinch the buds”?

Certainly it’s fine to enjoy some of the fruits of the labor in the early days. But consistently prioritizing short-term “flash” over long term stability will stunt the growth of the organization. …Or at least create roots that rot, seemingly suddenly.

Enjoy some of the profits, and focus your efforts on long-term growth.

The satisfaction has a sweeter taste when it follows self-chosen, self-disciplined actions.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #leveragedincome #networkmarketing #strawberries #networkmarketing #residuals #residualincome #pinchingthebuds

Are you stealing?

You may have heard this advice.

Comparison is the thief of joy.        –Theodore Roosevelt

Some sponsors tell this to their distributors, to keep the newbies from feeling depressed about “not moving fast enough in the business.”

(I have even heard top 10% income earners in several businesses make the same complaint about their personal enrollment and personal customer gathering efforts. It’s a common feeling of frustration.)

So, you may have given this advice to your team… but do you follow it?

Before you answer, there’s an angle you might not have considered…

Let me explain with a story.

It was my first network marketing company. I had to build the confidence and skills from scratch. It took me more than a year to gather my first 20 customers. I asked certainly more than 100 people, including all my relatives who had households of their own or ran a household. (This was a one-per-household type of product.) I persevered through a lot of outright no’s, a large helping of promises-not-fulfilled, and plenty of brush-offs.

I attended the Wednesday evening business presentation and Saturday training every week for the entire time. As I got closer and closer to the magic 20, the company started bringing the newly-accomplished distributors to the front of the presentation room each week, to shower them with praise for completing this milestone during the past seven days.

It gave me the fuel to work even harder to finish.

Then came that awesome day when I did. I jumped around excitedly in our apartment and took special care with how I dressed for that next presentation meeting, prepared to be brought to stage with the other distributors who accomplished the goal during the past 7 days.

With a huge grin on my face, I showed up early and reported to the stage manager with the other smiling faces.

“I gathered my first 20 customers!”

“Great! What’s your name?” he asked, slightly hunched as he wrote the pertinent information on a palm-sized folded paper with his ballpoint pen.

“How long did it take?” as he lifted his head a little, locking eyes with me with a smile and an expectant look on his face.

I told him.

He took the pen away from the paper and stood straight up. His smile of excitement fell off. And what he said took away mine.

In a slightly condescending manner he said in a low voice, “Accomplishing the goal should be reward enough.”

Now I felt confused. “But, you announce the distributors every week, and I accomplished the goal, just like they did  (and I thought, ‘just like the other people standing here who are hearing this’).”

He said in a much firmer voice, “Accomplishing the goal should be reward enough.” And then he turned to the next person, effectively dismissing me.

Color me mad.

He was the highest ranked distributor in the room and was in charge of the meeting. There was no one else to appeal to.

When time came to congratulate the newest batch of 20-customer-gatherers, I graciously applauded for them.

But I sat there thinking, the way I was treated was “How NOT to be a leader in network marketing.”… and I promised to remember how I felt, to use this lesson to guide me when I became a leader.

It also made me wonder: What other goals in this company will be highly praised for some but brushed off for others reaching the same milestone?

Let’s talk about how this lesson applies more than 15 years later.

When a new (or seasoned) distributor has not reached a goal, do you directly or indirectly scold them for “moving slowly?”

Do you compare people in a destructive way, saying things like “If you were serious about the business, you would already have accomplished ____________. So-and-So has (no network marketing experience, 9 children, 3 full-time jobs, only 5 minutes a week to work the business, etc.) and THEY already did it!!”

Don’t steal a distributor’s joy of progress.

Much like how we don’t criticize children by harshly comparing the beginning violin student’s squeaky bow work with the smooth mellow tones of the child prodigy. The fact that the personal milestone was reached, the skill was increased and a definite improvement noticed, is reason enough to celebrate. A newbie gathering their first 5 customers IS, I repeat IS, a big deal. Even if it took them 6 months and you did it in 6 hours.

Now let’s talk about the more typical goals of our profession: the customer gathering tally, rank advancement, team volume level.

No matter how long it takes your distributor to accomplish the goal, please celebrate it with as much enthusiasm and pride as you do for the fastest moving distributors on your team: One-to-one and in team meetings. With their permission…on their social media page.

Reaching the destination is what matters. Not the speed, not the flash.

Sure, you might make a bigger splash about the people who reach the goals super-fast. Those might be the people to whom you give a speaking role at the regional meetings and company conventions.

I’m not suggesting you give the equivalent of “participation trophies.” Just don’t make the mistake of making only a private, lukewarm acknowledgement ( or a brush-off) to the ones who move slowly. Such a reaction gives the impression you are dissatisfied with their actions.

The distributor is looking to you, the leader, to demonstrate expected response of leaders in YOUR business. They are asking themselves,

“This is how I feel. Am I being

Respected?

Appreciated?

And Rewarded Appropriately

for accomplishing this goal?”

Such a seemingly dissatisfied reaction from the person they look up to (you!) collides with their newly-won sense of pride. Your comparison, through what you omit, has the strong potential to steal their joy.

Distributors will notice when you seem embarrassed by them … and don’t be surprised if they leave for a team, a leader, a company that celebrates their success.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

P.S. I went on to gather more than 100 personal customers with that company.

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #trsc #areyoustealing #joy #volume #goals #participationtrophy #rankadvancement #leveragedsales #networkmarketing #partyplan #directsales #mlm

Say “Awe!”

In the northern hemisphere, many people are decorating their homes and windowsills with holiday lights and ornaments.

Menorahs gleam in ever-increasing candlelight.

White and colored tiny lights blink a welcome.

Here in Germany, the recent coating of snow makes many old half timber buildings look like a classic Christmas card.

Wherever you are in the world, my wish for you this week is that you find a moment where you stop and take a gasp of wonder at a beautiful sight.

A cat bumping heads with the person holding it.

A child’s delighted laughter.

The sunlight suddenly illuminating your favorite tree.

And if this season of celebration is painful for you, you might be comforted by last week’s post.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #sayawe

 

A beautiful and brutal time of year

In early 2014 my parents in law perished in an automobile accident.

I hoped that the 2014 Christmas season would be less brutal than I was cautioned to expect.

Wrong.

That year I could barely handle looking at holiday decor and sentiments, which is tough when one’s business deals squarely with those themes in the biggest financial quarter of the year.

I recall handling my clients’ requests with calmness and friendliness, but frequently after hanging up the phone or coming home after a meeting, I would cry from grief.

Subsequent years have been easier, but always include twinges of bittersweet memories.

If this describes you, know you are not alone.

Nowadays I look forward to the snow, low nighttime light, and the surge of friendly tidings of friends and strangers. I enjoy helping people select their items for purchase from our web site and giving pointers about designing their personal greetings of the season.

This season tends to heighten emotions, whether of past celebrations, current friends and family, or of those left behind or gone.

Regardless of what your product or service is, at least some of your clients and potential clients are experiencing similar, usually hidden, grief. It can manifest outwardly in angry responses to questions, suddenly cancelled appointments, and other awkward sales situations.

Please don’t take their actions personally. They might be receptive again after the new year begins.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #christmastime #grief

 

 

An Everyday Thankfulness

My husband and I moved to Germany a few months ago, so this is the first major holiday we’re spending away from extended family and friends that we’ve known for many years.

However, it’s a normal day in Deutschland.

My husband went to work, just like all the other employees in the country.

Grocery stores and post office are open. Trains run on their typical workday schedules instead of the reduced-frequency Sunday/Holiday timetables. No greetings of “Happy Thanksgiving” from people walking by. Here in late November, the undercurrent of excitement is from the openings of the Weinachtsmarkts (Christmas-theme outdoor markets) in each major town, starting this week or shortly thereafter.

I can’t find canned pumpkin, evaporated milk, or stuffing mix in any of the local grocery stores. I have no idea where to get a whole turkey, fresh or frozen. Cranberries are mythologically hard to find. Pumpkin pie has not been spotted in any store or bakery we’ve seen thus far.

Yet, I am thankful.

Moving here is a 15 year headstart on a long-time dream. My husband is employed in a job he loves. People are kind when we speak our beginner-level German but butcher the pronunciation and grammar. I can walk to a major grocery store within 10 minutes. I can hop on a train and in less than an hour indulge myself in several old downtowns crammed with gorgeous 5-storey half-timber (fachwerk) houses.

I am grateful for the internet, which allows me to seamlessly continue serving my USA based clients and gather new ones here. Social media helps me keep in touch with my friends and admire their gorgeous Thanksgiving dinner tables from afar.

We are in good health and have access to the universal health care mandated for every person staying in this country longer than 90 days.

I can pick up a phone or connect a video call over the Internet to hear loved ones’ voices on a whim.

And, I’m grateful for you. Regardless of the country you live in, thank you for reading my posts. I appreciate your time and send you best wishes for a joyous end-of-year holiday season.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #aneverydaythankfulness #gratitude #thanksgiving #networkmarketing #mlm #residualincome

 

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