Category Archives: Personal Stories

The METI ™ test vs. The gift-giving scheme

A secret-gift-giving scenario with a Christmas theme has resurrected itself on the internet this week. My goal is to show you how to decide if it’s legitimate.

The description: (how do I write this without triggering a fr@ud alert?) In the scenario, women are asked to send 1 gift of $X to a name they will be given, and there are promises of Y or more gifts in response.

Beyond the US Postal Inspection Service naming it as gambling and mail fraud, physical safety questions, and identification-privacy issues, I wonder why people fall for it (and why some still defend it, even after learning the police warn against it).

I learned from Mariah Nemeth PhD (author of “The Energy of Money”) that the #1 reason for such a decision is…. We humans look for shortcuts, a fast way to create the desired outcome. Our very human drive to “make my life simpler, better, as fast as possible” trips us up, especially when we encounter the subject of money.

But even if we set Dr. Nemeth’s idea aside, how can an ordinary person with no business-analysis experience tell the difference between legitimate requests and Ponzi schemes?

Before launching my first business in my 20’s, I had the same question.

Let’s look at three major sections of launching a business or a Commerce Structure ™ (which I define as a method of giving value, typically financial-based, and receiving some value of any type in response).

I call this the METI ™ Test:

  • YOUR Money
  • YOUR Effort
  • YOUR Time (preparation and after launching) until receiving desired result(s)

All creating a wanted result: Income of money (or other financial value)

I used capital letters to emphasize what you, as an investor or business owner, have to do from conception through reaching the financial break-even point, regardless of the size of your employee staff or distributor team.

Let’s take a look at three Commerce Structures ™ .

Franchise: Your Big: Money, Initial Effort, and Time Commitment. Product Sales Generate the Income.
Lots of time researching and interviewing before signing, lots of money before signup for legal paperwork, lots of money at signup (around a quarter of a million dollars is average), and lots of time and effort to staff and run in its first 3-5 years. You will be lucky to financially break even in the first 3-5 years. Product sales generate the wanted income.

Solo Professional (product or professional service paid via invoice): Your Low-to-medium Money Commitment. Your Big: Effort & Time. Product Sales Generate the Income.
Nearly the same time commitment as franchising, lots of money in education for the proper credentials and/or marketing. You ARE the business, so when you stop working, the money stops coming in. Product sales generate the wanted income.

Mom-and-Pop Retail: Your Low-to-medium Money Commitment. Your Big: Effort & Time. Product Sales Generate the Income.
Nearly the same time commitment as franchising, money at startup will vary, and creating ongoing profitability may be something that you’re continually juggling. Product sales generate the wanted income.

Here’s the pattern.

You must contribute heavily in at least one area, likely 2 or all 3, to successfully launch a business and get it self-sustaining.

Leveraged sales or independent personal distributorships typically require the highest contributions in the Time and Effort categories.

Now consider: How long would each require to cumulatively earn 6 times their initial financial investment?

I’m guessing in terms of years– not months  — for Franchises, Solo Professionals, and Mom-and-Pop Retail.

Let’s return to the secret-gift-giving scenario. The METI ™ test shows:

  • The commitment:  Low Money, Low Effort, Low Time.
  • The claim: Receive 6 times (or more ) your initial investment in two months.

If I described a business that way, would it sound realistic?

Probably not. (Because you’d be asking me, “What’s the catch?”)

For this secret-gift-giving situation, the only way I see money (or money-related value) enter this network of participants is through their initial investment (buying the gift then shipping it; it’s truly “input” when it is received by the other participant). There is a highly imbalanced input of 1 gift into the participant network generating an “income” of 6 or more from that network. Combined, these should signal caution about the stability and fairness-to-latecomers of the model. Adding the Postal Service’s and police’s warnings to the mix, I personally agree this secret-gift-giving scenario is illegal. If it was a “send x number of gifts and receive that same number in response” situation, that is much less questionable.

in summary:

When there is no “Big” commitment in any 3 of “YOUR” areas and your promised returns are significantly higher than your initial investments … and/or your income comes solely from other people’s initial investment, in my personal opinion it signals an illegitimate or illegal situation. In such a case, don’t realistically expect a fast, leveraged, high-quality return. (I am not an attorney and this blog does not constitute legal advice.)

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #trsc #METItm #METItm #greed #secretgiftexchange #secretgiftgiving #networkmarketing #mlm #leveragedsales #partyplan #directsales #marianemethphd #energyofmoney #commercestructure #commercestructuretm #ponzi #christmas

 

P.S. This METI ™ analysis also applies in other areas:

Earning a college degree: Big Money, Effort, and Time. Years to recoup 6 times the initial investment.

Bench pressing twice your weight: Big Effort and Time. I’m guessing years instead of months.

Investing in the stock market: Big Money or Effort or Time. Again, I’m guessing years (the less financial education, the more money and time are required)

P.P.S. I receive no compensation for mentioning Maria Nemeth PhD or her work, nor for any sales generated.

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What’s your code?

“Everyone has a code to crack. Once you’ve cracked the code, you are home free.”
Jordan Adler, Top Income Earner and ANMP Trainer

Each of us comes to this profession with different skillsets, experiences, and levels of personal development. Becoming an industry leader with a sustainable residual income demands high competence in many aspects.

For example, public speaking is fun* for me.

For you, maybe not.

But what you do easily might be challenging for me.

As informal coaches of a team, one of our tasks is to evaluate what our newbie’s business-owner-strengths are… and which ones need practice, professional instruction, or partnering via outsourcing.

In his quote, Jordan implies each person’s code, or group of challenges to face, is unique.

Your “code” won’t likely be the answer for someone else’s situation. But if you ask the right questions in a respectful manner, you can help the newbie discover theirs.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #crackthecode #whatsyourcode #jordanadler #quote #directsales #partyplan #mlm #networkmarketing #leveragedsales #anmp

*P.S.   I feel nervous before the speech or presentation– from the moment I agree to do it– but I know I rock on stage. That nervousness drives me to prepare thoroughly. Besides writing and rehearsal prior to the event, I earned a Competent Communicator ranking in Toastmasters. Over the space of 5 years I attended 10+ days of interactive public speaking training, which focused on releasing nervousness-on-stage & bad memories from stage performance experiences in childhood. And when I take the stage, I OWN the platform. It’s simultaneously exhilarating and humbling to deliver a talk. A fun result doesn’t mean the journey was easy.

 

 

 

How a piece of construction paper shifted my money habits

When I was in the early years of my first network marketing business, I found myself giving away money to various charities… gladly. A documentary about a historian, meal-for-the-holidays, etc.

That all changed when my husband lost his job and we had to move in with his parents.

The small Colorado town we landed in had a vibrant community life. Nearly every week there were opportunities to volunteer one’s time or to donate money to local and national charities. I donated my time to various events and had fun being part of the action. My husband took a job in the grocery store, and I went to work as a mortgage loan officer, to pay the credit card debt and our share of food and utilities.

Meanwhile, every penny was precious. We discussed every purchase above $5, and when the bank account was continually hovering a mere handful of dollars above zero, we agreed that we would stop all financial charitable contributions and selectively gift our time instead.

The change in my attitude came in early December of the second year.

In the town’s annual tradition, one of the local groups set up a poster in the entryway of the grocery store, which held “Santa” wishes for people in need. Instead of CDs or the newest toy, these were requests for newly-purchased basics and were written on pieces of red or green pine-tree-shaped construction paper. A winter coat. Mittens. Boots. Socks. And where to drop off the items at the county fairgrounds. (The previous year, I bought and donated a new pair of girls’ boots to match one of the requests.)

Each item had the appropriate size listed, along with a basic descriptor of the receiver.

The item that stopped me in my tracks was: “11 year old girl needs 7 pairs of (size) underwear.”

I also realized that my own underwear was nearly in shreds, the elastic so stretched and ineffective sometimes they slipped off my hips but were caught by the slacks I was wearing. (I think you can imagine how that worked.)

I pulled out the pushpin and freed that red slip of paper from the display, promising myself that I would remount it the next day, intact, if I could not provide the item.

My husband and I had a discussion in our bedroom that evening. In the end we decided to spend money on both of us women. Seven pairs for her, and likewise for me.

As I gently placed the requested item on the intake table at the fairgrounds, I realized this was a turning point in recognizing the difference between poverty consciousness and prosperity consciousness in my own life.

Since that time, I have observed when I have an urge to donate goods or money. I ask myself, “Am I also taking good care of myself and our household?” And nowadays when money is much more plentiful: “Have I been creating artificial lack in my head, denying myself a similar purchase?”

Each of us wrestles with different aspects of money behavior.

Sometimes we need an outside reason to spur us to take care of our own situation.

And sometimes we need an outside influence to go earn the money in the first place.

Regardless of your personal situation, I suggest you watch the video regarding the second situation. Randy Gage has some insightful ideas, which might come in handy for one of your teammates.

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach”

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #underwear #gifts #donations #networkmarketing #mlm #partyplan #directsales #leveragedsales

A strange type of group

Many years ago, I was talking with a potential team member, and he said with a sneer,

Isn’t that a cult?

And I matter-of-factly replied,

It’s the kind that GIVES you money. Are you interested?

The dumbfounded look I received in response was priceless!

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #cult #mindset #networkmarketing #leveragedsales #directsales #mlm #partyplan #humor

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

The bright side

My neighbors were noisy early this morning. I awoke suddenly in the dark and reached for the clock. 5:04am. I could hear the muted thump of a stereo system and feel the bed shake nearly continuously. (and when I discover which of the 20+ flats it was coming from, I will talk to them during the day, when everyone is calm.)

Needless to say, that was the unplanned early end of my night.

Being up early is unusual for me. You see, like many people reading this blog, I earn Roll-Over Money. I’m a night owl by inclination, which means I would rather stay up late than get an early start on the day.

So being jerked awake earlier than planned can put me in a foul mood.

To turn around a state of mind that was quickly sliding toward seething anger, I literally asked myself, “How can I take advantage of being up early?”

Two answers popped into my mind: submit the product orders that I had planned to do today, and post a photo/Facebook Live if the sunrise ends up looking spectacular.

I submitted the product orders…and it was still “yesterday” at the company headquarters, due to the difference in time zones. Who says time travel isn’t possible?

And the sunrise was spectacular. Hence a photo of the vivid orange and yellow painted sky, which my social media followers have been enjoying for more than 5 hours.

Here’s my question for you: When things go awry, how can you turn it around?

After all, Ma Ingalls has a philosophy in the “Little House on the Prairie” books: There is no loss without some gain.

Today I’m glad I was able to think on the bright side, like the pioneers in those books.

(or, if you prefer music over prose, Monty Python has a song along those lines. You’re welcome for the “ear worm.”)

–LYnn Selwa, “The Rocket Science Coach” ™

#lynnselwa #therocketsciencecoach #thebrightside #leveragedsales #mlm #networkmarketing #partyplan

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