Archive for November, 2011

Paying to Work

“What’s this all about? I have to pay to work?”

The curt response came in a one line email without punctuation and it followed an enquiry from someone who answered an online advert about working from home.

So it was someone who was looking for a job – and you can’t blame people for looking for a job.

Look at me:  I spent most of my life working in a job. This was hardly surprising because all through my schooldays I was told “Work hard, get good grades, get a good job…”

And I did have a good job. I was proud to have it; but it was still a job: I was employed.

Now I realise what that meant. It meant that my employer decided whether I could have the job in the first place and then decided how much I would get paid… and they always paid me less than I was worth. If they hadn’t done that they would never have made a profit out of me.

That’s the way it is with a job – and yet all over the country, millions of people accept that having a job is the norm.

And just to add to the absurdity, these millions of employees all have to trust that their employers are going to run profitable businesses – otherwise their jobs may not be secure.

But of course it has always been this way – the relationship between the employee and the employer. A thousand years ago it was little different. Then we had the serf and the lord – and a thousand years before that we had the slave and his owner.

Admittedly, conditions have improved – but has the relationship really changed? Remember, the employer must always pay the employee less than they’re worth – the employer understands that, but does the employee?

So here’s the alternative: You start your own business. That is to say you invest in yourself: You pay out money up front because you believe in yourself. Then you decide how much work you will do and you will get paid exactly what you’re worth – which may be more or less than you imagined; the marketplace will decide…

The point is that you are in control. Oh yes, the marketplace may change the rules as you go along. Your product or service may go out of fashion or become obsolete. You may have misjudged the market entirely and never get started. This is the risk the business owner takes – and their success or failure is dictated not by what happens to them but by how they react to what happens to them.

In other words, if you start your own business, you are in charge. Your success is dependent on no-one but yourself.

Scarey, yes?

So I shall explain this to my correspondent who asks about “paying to work” and I shall pose the question:  Job or business: which of those two ways of making a living would suit them best?

Of course, they may choose “Job”.

And I shall breath a sigh of gratitude that there are such people. Because, you see, the world is divided into two types: The ordinary people and the special people. And the special people are always going to need a lot of ordinary people.

They will need ordinary people to wait on their tables and service their cars and build their houses . They will need ordinary people to decorate their offices and look after their health and their bank accounts…

So it’s a good day when you meet an ordinary person.

But when you meet one and you show them that they can be special – well, that’s a great day.

What kind of day is it for you?

P.S> If you would like to explore this philosophy further, you can’t do better than Darren Hardy’s excellent 2-CD set “Making the Shift”.

The girl who had been to Newark

It was a road trip. In fact this was a spectacular road trip. From my home near Ipswich in Suffolk, I had volunteered to address a breakfast meeting in Swaffham in Norfolk – a distance of some 71 miles before 8.00 a.m. From there I drove to Sheffield for a team meeting with a distributor who had been inactive for a while because of family difficulties but who was now keen to get started again. Then it was on to Birmingham for the Opportunity Meeting – and then home. A round-trip of 426 miles and it involved the A17.

The A17 made it seem longer. I don’t know if you know this dead straight and depressing stretch of tarmac. It starts in Kings Lynn and tramps endlessly across the fens through places with names like Fosdyke and Swineshead and Stragglethorpe until it fetches up at Newark in Nottinghamshire. In fact that’s only 63 miles. It just seems like forever. The landscape is nothing but vast fields and sky, there don’t seem to be any bends and since it is single-carriageway, there is nothing to do but pootle along at 50 miles and hour looking at the back of a lorry.

In fact the only reason for mentioning the A17 at all is so I can introduce you to the girl in the filling station. I can’t even tell you her name because – to my shame – I didn’t ask. I was that fed up and in a hurry that I just pushed a card at her and hit the road again… not at all your successful network marketer.

But the conversation was a gem – particularly because I didn’t even start it.

She said: “Going anywhere nice?”

– Sheffield. Is Sheffield nice?

“I don’t know. I’ve never been. I’ve been to Newark and Leicester and Switzerland and Notts.”

Switzerland? How did Switzerland get in there? Was it down a B road south of East Heckington?

But she pulled me out of my gloom – especially when she smiled.

“You’re cheerful,” I said.

And then, like an actor who has been given his cue, I blurted out: “I’m always looking for cheerful people. They can make some really good money. Are you in the market for extra money?”

And that was how I came to give her the card. The whole exchange had taken no more than a minute before I headed off to Kirby La Thorpe and Coddington.

The last I saw of her, she was looking at the card as if it was a missing fragment from the Lost Scrolls.

“Cool,” was what she said.


A Brisk Winter’s Day – that’s what you would have called it if you’d been wrapped up in woollies and with a long stripey scarf  round your face.

On the other hand, if you’d acted on a whim to do half an hour of Free Prize Draw in the street and you didn’t have a coat, you would have called it perishing cold and wonder whether the prospect of double pneumonia was a worthwhile trade against the vague possibility of an appointment.

But a good motto in network marketing is “If you think it, do it”.

What this means is that if you think of doing some activity which will drive your business forward, just do it. Don’t ask if you’ll get anything out of it. Don’t wonder whether it’s worth getting home half an hour late… just do it!

So today I stood in the cold in a thin jumper and asked 37 people if they would like to enter my free prize draw – and 37 people hurried past, intent only on getting into the warmth of their cars (or if they were going in the other direction, the warmth of the shops).

One by one I ticked them off … 10… 20…30…36…37…

And then a man paused in mid-step, considered walking on and said finally: “Oh, all right then, what do I have to do?”

Duly, we filled in the form. I asked him the six questions. He gave all the right answers – but then, one by one, he proceeded to change his mind on all of them and ended up confessing that he was a contrary old buffer and I was wasting my time.

My time, I assured him, was never wasted.

Because you see, if you persist with the right activity, you will get your desired result. That is the law of nature and it is undeniable. It’s just that I didn’t know quite how quickly it was going to demonstrate itself.

For the next person to come past also agreed to enter the draw – and she too gave all the right answers. But she did not withdraw them all immediately afterwards. Indeed, once we got talking it transpired that she would indeed be interested in “additional part-time earnings”:

“I’m a nurse,” she explained. “At least I used to be and I think I shall have to go back to it – but I must confess, I’m not looking forward to the prospect. Not with the Health Service the way it is now…”

And I really think she may turn up for our Opportunity Meeting on Tuesday. We got on really well. Indeed I agreed to look after her dog while she went into  Boots.

….and if I hadn’t agreed to do that, I would not have met the next person to go by – who also agreed to enter the Prize Draw … and topped it off by giving me an appointment for Wednesday.

For which I take no credit at all – it’s all down to the law of nature.

… Oh, all right then, I will take some credit. There has to be some compensation for standing in the cold for half an hour…

But then I know something like that would happen. You can’t argue with the laws of nature.

Half an hour

Just 30 minutes – that’s not a lot out of a day. At least that was my reasoning when I decided to keep a log of my activity.

What would happen, I wanted to know, if I were to spend half an hour a day offering people the chance win a car in my company’s prize draw? How many people would I talk to? How many appointments would I get? How many customers…

Well I can tell you it works – but I knew that – whenever I’ve been short of customers for some promotion or other, I’ve always headed out into the street with my stack of entry forms. But until now it’s always been a question of “carry on asking until enough people say ‘yes’.”

Much more illuminating is doing it the other way: A commitment to half an hour a day – every day… five days a week.

I’ve been at it for two weeks now and this is what I managed:

Monday November 7th: 30 minutes (well it was the first day, what did you expect?)

Tuesday November 8th: 21 minutes (Oh dear… and so soon!)

Wednesday November 9th: 39 minutes (obviously gave myself a serious talking-to).

Thursday November 10th: 30 minutes

Friday November 11th: 29 minutes

So, only one minute short in he first week.

Week Two:

Monday November 14th: None at all!

Tuesday November 15th: 32 minutes.

Wednesday November 16th: None

Thursday November 17th; None (now I was in serious trouble – 88 minutes behind schedule.

Friday November 18th: 12 minutes. What can I say? I was busy!

So on Saturday – even though it wasn’t a work day – I told my family I just had to pop down to town for 90 minutes. I was full of guilt when I said it – as if I was going to spend the morning gambling their inheritance. They looked at me as if it was perfectly reasonable to pop into town on a Saturday morning.

So out I went and did 47 minutes.

Put it all together and over the two weeks I was 20 minutes short. But let’s look at what we got out of it: Two customers signed up already, another two appointments done with firm commitments to signing up this week. A further eight appointments in the book and on top of that, eight people who have asked me to call them – one of whom leaned out of the door of the bus as the driver tried to close it, shouting: “You will be sure to call me won’t you. I’m very interested…”

So yes, it does work.And no it’s not as easy as it looks.

But then, if this business was as easy as it looks, they couldn’t possibly afford to pay us as well as they do.

But what’s the real lesson here? The rewards are absolutely genuine. You just have to do what it takes.

The New RAC Man

You may remember the RAC man in the supermarket. It was a few months ago that I went up  and asked him how many people that day had suggested he should be a distributor with my company.

Well, he did become one.

He never did anything  – oh, he went on the training, he got all excited but he never actually did anything. But as we know, that’s just the way it is. Some will, some won’t, so what, someone’s waiting…

As it happens, the one who was waiting was another RAC man in the same supermarket. So once again, I walked up and asked how many people had suggested he sould be a distributor.

And he said: “You must be John Passmore.”

I had no idea I was so famous.

But it turned out that RAC Man Number One had told RAC man Number Two all about how he had come to join the business. RAC Man Number Two just happened to have joined three years previously but never got started. As we have established, this is not uncommon. We all have stuff to do. The stuff seems important at the time but now he had decided his day had come. He wanted to join again!

So what did his colleague do? Did he say: “Great, let’s get you started.” Did he say: “Sign here”?

No, he said nothing!

So there was Number Two wanting to join and hot knowing how to go about it. Then one day, who should walk into the supermarket but a serious distributor – we know he was serious because he was wearing the company logo.

The RAC Man went up, tapped him on the shoulder and said: “Hey, aren’t you going to ask me if I want to join your business?”

This is what we call in this industry “jammy”.

In fact the new recruit had fallen his feet. His new sponsor is one of the company’s movers and shakers and I have no doubt that our new RAC man will go on to great things.

… although naturally I would have preferred him to do it in my team!

So may I ask RAC Man Number One – if any more of his colleagues ask to join – to kindly point them in my direction…



Every bit of teaching about Network Marketing emphasises the value of consistent daily activity. The 30 Minute Academy is based on the idea of spending 30 minutes a day prospecting. You can do this  either by telephoning people you know from your list or by talking to people you don’t know using a Prize Draw.

The important thing is to keep a record of your results. Firstly this will make sure you do it (otherwise you have no results to record) and second; you can measure your gradual improvement.

Posting it here makes it even more imperative that I put in the daily activity. Feel free to add your own results as a comment. Just paste the table from your own Word document.

Date Time How Minutes (day’s total) Number of people asked Appointment? Callback agreed?
10.11.11 1455 -1501 Prize Draw. Woodbridge Car Park 6 15 Yes (signed 29.11.11)
1504 – 1511 10 (16) 14 No
1511 – 1516 5 (21) 5 Yes (signed  21.11.11)
1515 – 1525 9 (30) 7 Yes (But No for now)


Small Nook

Saturday was frantic. The sailing club had rung and said my galley duty was due to start at 10.30 a.m. and not 11.30 – but we have a swimming slot in the timeshare pool at 10.00 a.m on Saturdays. Meanwhile Tamsin was taking Number One son to his drama workshop and Number Two son wanted to be taken to his triathlon training…

This is, I suspect, a normal Saturday for the average British family nowadays. But where in all of this was I going to fit my little part-time business? I only wanted a small nook or cranny of the day – but the day was welded end to end with urgency.  I barely had time to dash to the Post Office to collect (appropriately) next year’s diary before heading off to swimming.

And there I spotted my chance. You see, when I say “the Post Office”,  what I really mean is the tiny little lobby of a vast red-brick building at the end of the high street. I have no idea what goes on in the rest of it but if you ring a bell, eventually someone appears behind a glass screen with your parcel.

The full meaning of the word “eventually” was evident from the bored-looking people already waiting. In fact, more than that, they looked mildly disgruntled. Maybe they’d been waiting longer than I thought. At any rate they did not look in the right frame of mind to enter my prize draw.

But on the other hand I was on a mission and what did it matter if they said ‘No’? I was looking for ‘No’s’. If I can get 20 a day, I know I’ve been working – even on a Saturday.

“Since, we’re all waiting,” I said brightly, shattering the silence and feeling more comfortable once I’d got started, “I’ve got a prize draw here. You could win a car or £10,000.  Want to have a go?”

The woman at the counter turned away as if I had said a rude word. The man behind her went to follow suit. But then, as I started putting the form away, he added: “I never win anything.”

And that’s all we need, isn’t it?

“Well you’ve got a good chance then, haven’t you, after all this time…”

And I got the form out again.

He peered. “What’s it all about,” he asked.

By time I was half way through my 60 second presentation, the woman at the counter had turned round and was listening to every word.

Now I’d like to be able to tell you that I made an appointment there and then – but I didn’t. However the  man did take my card.

Now I don’t know whether he will look at the website and if he does, I have no idea whether he will call me. But none of that matters. What matters to me is that, in a dead spot during a frantic Saturday morning, I was able to touch my business.

And if I keep on doing that, I can’t fail…



Every bit of teaching about Network Marketing emphasises the value of consistent daily activity. The 30 Minute Academy is based on the idea of spending 30 minutes a day prospecting. You can do this  either by telephoning people you know from your list or by talking to people you don’t know using a Prize Draw.

The important thing is to keep a record of your results. Firstly this will make sure you do it (otherwise you have no results to record) and second; you can measure your gradual improvement.

Posting it here makes it even more imperative that I put in the daily activity. Feel free to add your own results as a comment. Just paste the table from your own Word document.

Date Time How Minutes (day’s total) Number of people asked Appointment? Callback agreed?
09.11.11 0912-0919 Prize Draw. Woodbridge Car Park 7 6 No
1127-1130 Prize Draw: Dales Road, Ipswich 3 (10) 1 Called but No
1130 -1139 9 (19) 4 Yes but cancelled
1615 -1622 Prize Draw: Woodbridge Car Park 7 (26) 6 Yes – signed 14.11.11
1623 – 1632 9 (35) 13 No Yes – signed 06.12.11
1632 -1636 4 (39) 6 No




It’s a good word and I think it means a skinny young person with a whispy beard – probably straggly hair that hasn’t seen a shampoo bottle for a while and a general air of intense cool.

But then I’m not cool so I may have it all wrong and might just have insulted the very helpful young man behind the counter in the computer repair shop.

And I wouldn’t want to do that.  Mostly I wouldn’t want to do it because he has just rescued me from modern man’s worst nightmare: A total Windows reinstall.

This is one of those events where the opportunity arose quite by accident. In fact this is what we want to achieve as network marketers – the situation where the opportunity to offer someone our business comes up and grabs us by the neck.  Really, we have no alternative. This is how it came about:

Scuzzy was running my credit card through the maching (£50 and cheap at the price). “I’ve spent most of the morning listening to someone telling me I should’ve got a Mac,” I told him. “Apparently the idiot teenagers who invent the viruses never get around to inventing ones for Macs.”

“Yeah,” he said. “I’ve got a Mac at home. They don’t break down either – well hardly ever. Mine’s seven years old and I’ve never had any trouble.”

Seven years! What I’ve spent minding the four computers in our house over seven years would have bought a new house, let alone a new computer!

“I’ve got a PC as well,” he went on. “Can’t afford two Macs.”

“Expensive are they?”

“About £900 for the equivalent of a £500 PC.”

“You’d better get Dave to give you a pay rise.”

“Yeah, I wish.”

Pause. In the network marketing lobe of my brain two synapses flailed random electrical impulses at each other until:  “Well I could probably help you there.”


“Yes, I’ve got this part-time thing going. Tell me, if the money was good enough, do you think you could find a couple of hours a week?”

And now he’s looking.

* The dictionary definition of Scuzzy:  Slang, chiefly US: Unkempt, dirty or squalid (Possibly from “disgusting” or a combination of “scum” and “fuzz”.

As promised

“That’s the nicest thing anyone’s said to me today.”

The man on the end of the phone was clearly in a state of some astonishment. I mean, eight hours a day making 400 cold calls asking for “the person who deals with the Health and Safety” .

And get this: if just one of those calls resulted in the sale of his company’s service (which turned out to be checking all the electrical  appliances) then he had met his target.

One in 400! No wonder he appreciated my saying how good he was.

Admittedly it was not quite what he hoped I would say – but since my business does not have any employees whose Health and Safety might be compromised by a dodgy plug, then clearly I was not a very good prospect for him.

However, he was an ideal prospect for me.

“Yes,” I went on. “I think you’re really good at what you do. Believe me I get a lot of these calls and I don’t usually stay on the phone while someone goes through their script but I’m still here so you must be doing something right. I hope they pay you well.”

There was a sort of garbled snort on the other end of the line. If you speak garble, you would probably have translagted it as “Oh year, I wish…”

My cue: “Well the reason I ask is because I’m always looking for people who are good communicators  for my business. Tell me, are you in the market for more time or more money or possibly both. “

“How do you mean?” he asked.

“Well if the money was good enough – and I do stress, only if the money was good enough –  could you  find a couple of hours a week?”

So now he’s looking.

A Good Day

How can it be a good day if nobody joined and the only appointment called to say she’d been sent home from work because she wasn’t well and could we postpone?
Well here’s the good part: I felt I needed to make up for that lost appoointment. Maybe I could get another for the same time – after all, I’d already arranged with the family to be out this evening.
So after getting a haircut (and leaving a card with the hairdresser to give her sister whose husband is too mean to pay for a decent holiday) I stepped out into the car park to look for five people who would refuse to enter my company’s prize draw to win a Mini or £10,000.
The logic is that it’s always much more pleasant to look for people who say “No” than people who say “Yes” – that way, whatever they say, you win.
Here’s what happened: The first four said “No”. The fifth said “Yes” and gave me an appointment – which meant I had to ask one more to get the five.
Just to be awkward, the next person refused to enter the draw until I’d told him what it was about.
I didn’t mind at all because of course the whole object of the draw is to get people to ask what it’s all about.
So I told him – and then he said “No” he didn’t want to enter the draw.
Which meant that I won on both counts…
And then to top it all I went home and a very nice man rang to ask to speak to the person who dealt with Health and Safety.
But that is another story for another day…

The Good Barman

The black part rose through the white part as if a magician had tapped the glass with his wand. I’ve never understood how they do this.
“It’s a mystery to me,” said the barman, watching the Guinness transform from the flat and muddy concoction that came out of the can to it’s full draught stout splendour.
I don’t know if you’ve experienced this but it’s how you get your Guinness in an establishment that does not sell enough of the stuff to warrant a proper keg in the cellar – somewhere, for instance, like the Youth Hostel we stayed in this weekend while taking our annual family “big Walk”.
And in keeping with tradition, I like a Guinness at the end of the day – and I love to see the way the barman presses a button and the flat beer acquires a head as if by magic.
… in this case too much of a head. It didn’t stop when it reached the top. In fact it started foaming down the side of the glass.
“It’s not supposed to do that!” exclaimed the barman. “This is supposed to be scientific. It should stop exactly at the top of the glass. Oh, I do apologise. This is dreadful.”
I agreed. In fact I was not at all sure I could bring myself to drink anything “faulty”. The other customers at the bar agreed. The general consensus was that it was “operator error” to blame – at which the genial barman admitted full responsibility and only charged me half price.
He was one of those larger-than-life characters. He didn’t just serve you a drink, he gave you an experience – whether it was how he had persuaded the management to stock Hobgoblin or explaining the peculiarities of the storeroom which explained how he managed to keep the bottle beer so cold.
I liked him – and so, it was abundantly clear – did everyone else. I don’t know where such people come from but they are like sparkling gems in the dull mass of humanity – and I wanted him in my business.
So the next morning I sought him out and complimented him on the way he ran his bar.
“The thing is,” I told him, “people like you. They warm to you – you must know this…”
He nodded. He smiled. He knew it all right.
“I’m looking for people like you. Tell me. Are you in the market for more time, more money or possibly both?”
And now he’s looking.

What’s it all about?

This is the diary of a successful Multi-Level Marketer making money from home and fitting a part-time business into a busy life.
Over the years it has developed but the objective remains the same: To demonstrate how anyone can build a successful network marketing business in "the nooks and crannies of the day".
Eventually this spawned a training programme which I called The Cold Market Academy. This began as a seminar available only to MLM-ers working with my company. Then it went online as an e-learning course.
Now it is a book available through Amazon: MLM, Network Marketing and the Secret of the Free Prize Draw (you can see more about this on the "MLM Prize Draw" tab above.)
But at the heart of the Network Marketing Blog is the answer to the two most common questions people ask when they look at this business - and the two biggest challenges they face when they start:
1. I'm not a salesperson.
2. I don't have the time.
These are genuine concerns and all too often they get brushed aside: "Don't worry about that. We'll show you how..."
This blog is designed to show how it works in reality and in real time - how anyone, no matter how busy, can work their business consistently in small fragments of time. Because that's all you need; just a few seconds to find out if someone's interested.
And please bear in mind the entries here are only a tiny snapshot of the daily activity. Most of what goes on would make very dull reading indeed: Making calls from the list ... adding names to the list...making calls from the list...
As for being a salesperson: Have a look and decide for yourself.
Is it sales?
Let's say you call on a friend unexpectedly and find them up to their ankles in water and battling with a burst pipe.
Imagine it: There they are, soaked to the skin, trying to wrap a towel round the leak while they shout: "I rang the plumber but all I get is the Ansaphone..."
Honestly now, would you ignore their plight or would you volunteer the number of your own plumber.
Would you do what you could to help them or would you consider that going into "sales" on behalf of the plumber would be beneath you?
And what would your friend say when they realised you had deliberately chosen to leave them struggling to stem the flow and all because you felt embarrassed about "selling" something.
Network marketing is all about spreading good news and it's all about helping people.

If you're thinking of getting into Network Marketing - or already in it but not making enough money - contact me at

About Me

John Passmore,
United Kingdom.

For 25 years I was a newspaper reporter - ending up as Chief Correspondent for the London Evening Standard. Then I gave it all up and, with my wife, set out to live the simple life on a small boat while writing a column for the Daily Telegraph. Five years and two children later we moved ashore - and five years and another two children after that I ran out of money. Nobody wanted to give me a job and I couldn't afford to start a conventional business. Then at a craft fair in our local community hall, somebody showed me network marketing. It was described as a home-based business that would provide anyone with a second income if they were prepared to work for it. I was sceptical. There were claims of high earnings and something called a "residual income". But what if it did work? And besides what alternative did I have? So I threw myself into it wholeheartedly (which is the only way to succeed at anything). I'm not saying it was easy or there were never moments of doubt but if you're prepared to learn and determined never to give up, then there is a statistical certainty that you will make money. I started in April 2005. I was broke and embarrassed. Today I have no money worries whatsoever.