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November 01, 2011

Publisher's Note

Letter from John Fleming, November 2011


John FlemingThe month of November brings with it one of the most treasured holidays—Thanksgiving. As we move toward this day of celebration, regardless of what else might be going on, we take time to realize that there is something very real about an attitude of gratitude, and that there is always much to be thankful for.

This month I have chosen to share a personal encounter. Over the past few years I have written many “From the Publisher” pieces and only on one other occasion have I discussed a personal matter—because it related so much to what the direct selling industry is all about, just as this one does.

This past weekend, I was reminded of the great value that can be derived from the building of a successful direct selling business at the independent contractor level. I visited with a dear friend, a direct seller whom I had observed for many years as she went about starting and building a most successful business. She believed in the dream/possibility of the business opportunity, and she understood the value of serving customers, recruiting and mentoring others to do the same.

My friend, described above, grew personally into a top leader in her company and she developed many others who became leaders as well. She was always absolutely amazing to me as a person—vibrant and energetic, and so very passionate about her dream. She and her husband were also very unique. It was business during the week, but on weekends they both rode their beloved Harleys.

Today, life is very different for my friend. A recent and unexpected illness is preventing her from doing practically all of the things she once did. However, one aspect of her life continues to thrive in spite of very serious personal challenges. Her direct selling business has continued to grow! Thousands were attracted to her sales organization because of what she believed in. Her husband showed me a report, which ranked her organization in the top five within her company. Remarkable. Amazing. We could use so many words to describe this individual. Most important, she is an example of why a direct selling/network marketing business can not only meet a need, but also be life-changing!

I have always believed that one of the primary attributes of the direct selling business model lies in helping others to find their why in life. Why would anyone invest a few hours per day in learning to do something that they probably never thought about doing? I cannot imagine a person, who is not already in direct selling, going to bed at night and dreaming about becoming a great direct seller. I really do not think this happens that often. It happens when people are shown an opportunity, unlike anything else available, where they can invest both time and money in accordance with their own desire and be governed by principles and values they can believe in. Where else can people from all walks of life find a true pathway that enables the possibility of meeting needs that need to be met, not to mention aspiring to achieve dreams that have been on shelves within the mind?

I did not ask my friend Sophia to define success for me. Had I asked the question, I do not think her response would have been a traditional response at all. The dollars have come in abundance; the numbers would indicate such. But the asset that was built—that continues to grow—is the asset of having a successful direct selling business composed of thousands of others who also have their own businesses. I am sure that Sophia would have responded—through the iPad that she now uses to speak for her—with an attitude of gratitude for having been able to see the possibilities offered her through the company she chose to join. That attitude of gratitude is also so apparent when you listen to her husband Randy or her daughter Karen.

The story I just shared with you was simply a reminder for me of what each of you provide as company leaders and suppliers. Hundreds of thousands search for, hope for, and often pray for, but still do not know of, the incredible opportunities you offer. But for those who have already found your opportunities, I am quite sure that millions share an attitude of gratitude for what you make available. Each of your companies has personal success stories that transcend any general definition of success.

Here at Direct Selling News, we are always grateful for the opportunities we experience in sharing the stories you create. Happy Thanksgiving to each of you! My personal gratitude is extended to my good friends. Our friendship and visit became another experience I will never forget, and a great reminder of why this industry is one of the finest forces for good on the planet.

Until next month … enjoy the issue!

John Fleming
Publisher and Editor in Chief