Friday, May 30, 2008

A different perspective

There's an adage that says, "When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change."

The other day, I was looking for a notepad on my desk. I needed it to write down some information that I wanted to be sure to remember later.

My desk can get kind of messy. OK, it can get very messy. Stuff was piled all over the place.

I looked and looked. No notebook.

I moved some piles around. Looked under other piles. Nothing.

Finally, I stood up. I quickly spotted the notebook right where I could see it perfectly from a higher vantage point.

On the way home later that day, the odometer on my ever reliable car hit 272, 931 miles. It occurred to me that there is another six-digit number that would logically follow that one.

And no, I'm not thinking of 272,932. But, yes, I know that number would also logically follow 272,931.

I'm thinking of another number. Figured it out yet?

Try this. Remove the comma — 272931. Does that help. No?

All right. Give this a shot. Don't think of it in thousands. That help? No?

All right. Think of the numbers in groups of two. 27 29 31. Now you know it, right?

The number I'm thinking of is 333,537. After 27 29 31 comes 33 35 37.

When you change the way you look at the number, the number changes.

It's often that way in life. Often a problem arises. A challenge occurs.

If we groan and fuss and gripe about it. We're not likely to find a way to solution.

But if we focus on finding a way around, over or through the situation, we're much more likely to solve it. We might even find a way to turn it into a positive.

There's a great episode of a show that's been off the air for a while called, "The West Wing." In it, the sitting president was running for re-election. The opposing candidate was portraying the president as aloof and out of touch.

Indeed the president was a brilliant man and often came across as condescending to some. His team struggled with a way to deal with it, until finally one of his advisors pointed out that they should use it to their advantage. He said it should be a blessing to have a president with a high IQ.

The president quit worrying about looking too smart. In the next debate, he showed his intellect and made his opponent look stupid. He went on to win re-election.

Next time you're struggling with an issue, try to look at it from another perspective. See if there's an upside, a way to use the situation for good.

Even if the thing you're looking at doesn't change, you'll change for the better.

Steve DeVane
This network marketing system helped me change the way I look at business and at life.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The recipe for success

My wife makes this great hash brown potato casserole that is out of this world. She takes some hash browns and mixes in some butter and other stuff, then puts them in a pan, tops them with bacon bits and cooks them in the oven.

They are good. I mean, they are real good.

She often cooks them for family reunions. When we're going through the line, one of the first things I look for is those potatoes, because I'm hoping there's still some of them left.

Often there's not. I hate it when that happens.

My wife got the recipe from someone she knew. I was thinking the other day about how my wife follows the recipe. If I'm going to the store, she tells me exactly what she needs for that recipe. Then she puts in exactly the right amount of each ingredient and then cooks it for just the right amount of time.

She does all that because she has a recipe. She knows if she follows all those steps the casserole will come out just right.

It's the same way in our life and in our business. If there's someone who's successful and is willing to show us the way, all we have to do is follow their directions. Do what they do and we'll have the success that their having.

I spent years floundering in my network marketing business. I knew successful marketers, but their success didn't translate to my success.

Then I found this free mentoring system. The networkers I met freely shared their expertise and their time with me. People who had absolutely no stake in my company showed me the path they had already taken to success.

For a while, I couldn't believe it. I kept waiting for the manipulation.

It never happened.

I kept saying to myself, "What's the catch?"

Never was one.

Finally, I got past my disbelief and started doing what my mentors showed me to do. Now, the success I had missed is coming my way.

All I had to do was follow the recipe.

Steve DeVane
This free e-book was the first step in my recipe for success.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Learn the art of success

I am often amazed at how techniques I learned in coach training apply to the network marketing profession.

Coaches are taught to have no agenda. A coaching session is all about the person being coached. That outlook fits perfectly with network marketing.

The best way to help people is to first understand what they need. If we don't know what they need how can we know how to help them.

The best way to understand people is to get to know them. The way to get to know them is to relate to them with no agenda.

Think about it. We shouldn't want someone in our business if they don't really want to be in the business.

If they don't really want to be in business, they're never going to succeed. They'll spin their wheels and get nowhere.

Furthermore, if they don't want to be in business, we'll spend a good amount of our time convincing them rather than training them. It's a waste their time and our effort.

My friend and mentor, Tom "Big Al "Schreiter, has taught me the importance of having skills in our network marketing business.

Here are some coaching skills that will help you learn about people. It's based on the acrostic — LEARN.

Listen. When you're in a conversation, try to spend at least 80 percent of the time listening. That means you should not be talking more than one fifth of the time.

Encourage. Look for ways to support the person. Too often we're looking for something wrong, so we can pounce on the person with our "opportunity." Instead, encourage the person to find their own path.

Ask powerful questions. The answers will help you get to know the person better. Ask open-ended questions that will give the person an opportunity to share about their hopes, their dreams, their goals.

Respond. Make sure you understand what the person is telling you. Don't get ahead of them in the conversation by thinking about what you're going to say next. Tune into what they're saying, what they want, and what they need.

Negotiate action. In network marketing, we need to emphasize negotiation. Coaching sessions usually end with the person being coached deciding what they want to do and when they're going to do it. In our business, make sure the person is making the decision with no pressure.

These skills will help you in your network marketing business and in your life.

Steve DeVane
This free e-book taught me how to be successful in network marketing

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Lessons from high school athletes

I went to my daughters' school athletic banquet tonight. Team after team went to the stage as their coaches told about the seasons they had this year.

Each coach told about how his or her team came together, each in different ways.

Some coaches talked about adversity that their teams faced. Some had injuries. Some had other challenges. Each had worked their way through them.

One coach talked about nicknames that his team had adopted for each other. Clearly this brought the team closer together.

Another coach talked about the goals the team had strived to reach.

But the most inspirational words of the night came from seniors who had played their last high school games.

One talked of how he was grateful to have had a school that allowed him to participate in athletics.

Another talked about how sports had taught her the power of teamwork.

Another talked of how athletics taught her leadership skills.

All this got me thinking of how each member of each team gave up part of their individuality for the good of the team.

A star basketball player had to learn how to make the other players better.

A softball player had to switch positions to make the team better.

All this got me thinking of how I can improve the teams of which I am a part.

First I can look at the overall goals of the team instead of just my goals. If the team is doing well, I'm doing well.

Next, I can decide how my talents and my gifts can fit into the team. I'm on each team because I contribute to it. I can look at what part of my strengths will fit into the needs of the team.

Finally, I can look for ways to improve myself in every situation. The seniors athletes didn't just go through the motions in their sports. They looked at how they could improve themselves in each game.

If we'll look, we can find ways to improve ourselves in the situations we face. Do that and we'll be winners no matter the score.

Steve DeVane
This network marketing system constantly teaches me how to improve my life and business.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Thirty days to change your life

A few minutes ago, I heard some noise coming from one of my daughter's rooms upstairs. It's late, so I hollered up to her that she needed to get to sleep.

She said OK, but she was putting up some of her clothes. Not wanting to stop her from something that needed to be done, I let her go.

A couple of minutes ago, she yelled down for me to come upstairs because she wanted me to see her room, which she had just finished cleaning.

I went up and saw her nice, tidy room. It was a beautiful sight. Everything was cleared away and in it's proper place. I could tell my daughter felt better to be in a clean place.

As I came back downstairs, I thought about how I feel like my mind is much like my daughter's room. All the junk that used to crowd my thoughts have been cleared away. My thoughts are almost always positive now, and even when a stray negative thought sneaks in, I recognize it and do away with it.

It wasn't always this way. Until about six months ago, my mind was full of useless chatter. Now I'm much more focusedthanks to the Mental Cleanse.

The Mental Cleanse can help you clear your mind and get you on the path toward success in 30 days.

Below, Michael Dlouhy, the founder of Mentoring for Free and the originator of the Mental Cleanse, explains how those 30 days can change your life. Michael, my good friend and mentor, made the video for me.

Steve DeVane
This free e-book started me on the path to success and happiness.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Avoid strategies that don't work

Several years ago, someone I trusted in network marketing suggested that I buy some leads to help build my business.

It seemed like a good idea at the time. Earlier, I had made the list of family and friends as I was taught to talk to about the business. When that didn't work, it sounded good to have a list of "pre-qualified" people to call.

So I bought leads.

And I made calls.

And I bought more leads.

And I made more calls.

Didn't work.

Now I know why.

My friend and mentor, Michael Dlouhy, studied hundreds of networking companies. He's been in the business more than 25 years.

In this video, he explains why buying leads doesn't work.

Steve DeVane
This free mentoring system taught me what does and doesn't work in network marketing

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Why we do the things we do

Success in life comes easier when we decide to take our own path.

Knowing that direction comes with knowing ourselves. Once we become familiar with our strengths, gifts and talents, we'll more easily recognize the way we are meant to go.

Another key factor in getting to know ourselves is understanding which of the four generally recognized personality types most closely characterizes us.

Everyone is perfect just the way they are. Realize that you don't have to change to be successful in business or in life.

One of the best ways to think about the four personality types is using colors to represent them. The four types can easily be determined by considering how you interact with other people.

About 35 percent of people have a yellow personality. Those with this personality are open, but indirect. They answer questions, but tend to give short answers. They are nurturers. They value their families. They want to help people.

People with a blue personality represent about 15 percent of people. Those with this personality are open and direct. They will let you know their feelings. They want to have fun and like to talk.

Another 15 percent have a red personality. They are direct, but self-contained. They will answer questions, but won't reveal much. These are usually people in power.

Those with a green personality make up about 35 percent of the population. They are indirect and self-contained. They are the least likely to directly answer a question. There is often dead space in conversations with them because they have to process the information before answering. The are analytical and want to have as much data as possible.

Knowing your personality will help you understand yourself better. You'll understand why you do the things you do. And you'll realize that you're a great you just the way you are.

Steve DeVane
This free e-book helped me understand my personality better.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Push your business to its limits

I was reading a thread on a personal development forum about Dean Karnazes, an endurance runner. He gives his advice for pushing athletic performance to its limits. A lot of what he says is great advice for our business life.

Karnazes says to be audacious. Any goal worth achieving involves risk, he says.

We networkers often get stuck in what is called "analysis paralysis." We find something we think will work, but we want more information. We want to be sure.

So we sit and waste valuable time and energy searching for more information. If that time and energy would have been put up into the process we were considering, we would have been far ahead of where we are. And if we were going to put the time and energy into researching it anyway, why not put that time and energy into moving forward.

Karnazes also says to flirt with disaster. He pushed himself to near death to find out that he was strong enough to survive.

Less than a year ago, my business was near death. I was getting nowhere fast. I was nearly spent. Then I came across this business system which turned my business and my life around. I wanted to throw in the towel, but I pushed through that wall. I took a chance that's paying off.

Karnazes also says to promote yourself. His high profile motivates him because he knows his family income is dependent on it.

We network marketers sometimes look for ways to build our business with a low profile. We think we can stay in the background.

Network marketing is not a sales business, but it is a relationship business. We have to make a name for ourselves. You do this by simply sharing what you know and helping other people.

The beauty of building a business this way is that the more we help people, the more we better ourselves and the more we better the profession of network marketing.

One thing I liked about Karnazes' advice is that so much of it seems counter-intuitive. For example, he eats lots of junk and has cut back on his sleep.

Sometimes we have to go against the grain in order to reach our dreams. To some it doesn't make sense for network marketers to help people in other companies. People in competitive mode look on others as adversaries instead of what they are - our colleagues.

Take a chance. Be an endurance networker.

Steve DeVane
This free e-book changed my perspective on network marketing.