April 26, 2013: Steve and I are on our way to his parent’s house, which is a 2.5 hour drive away. I totally screwed up our who morning and afternoon. First of all, we were supposed to wake up super early to help Ray, our roommate, move and be out of the house by 9 maybe 10 the latest. I was so burnt out from yesterday that I just slept through it all. I was supposed to wake at 8:30 but ended up waking up at 12. Sometimes I can be a really crumby friend. I woke up to say bye but when I saw she was in the shower, I just went back to bed. Since I way over slept past my schedule, I missed my coffee date with my friend Shane in Toronto and now Steve is feeling pressured from being late.
You see, today is a special day. Steve is going to have his “launch” and his first “home meeting”. A launch is where he pays his $500+tax to start up his very own independent business with ACN. I had mine exactly one week ago.
I’ve been so busy lately I haven’t had/taken the chance to finish this post nor write new ones unfortunately. Well, to continue from last Friday, a home meeting is where you gather a bunch of people to the comfort of your home to show them the business. Home meetings may not seem like a big task, however, after breaking down the process that goes behind organizing one – from what feels natural and what you are told to do by ACN representatives – it can be difficult to organize a successful one.
Let me explain by pulling out key points:
1) When first introduced to ACN at a meeting, there is so much energy delivered from the speakers. The business is purposely delivered in such an energetic manner to pump you up to believe that you’re going to be rich. Not only is there tons of positive vibes thrown in your face, but there is also an urgency to get involved so you don’t get left in the dark regretting what could be the best decision of your life. So right off the bat, they pull at your emotions, giving you hope that you’ll get rich and all your problems will go away and if you don’t take this risk, then you’ll regret it one day.
2) Along with the urgency to do-do-do, there are also manuals, instructions, calendars and scripts for you to follow. One of the first tasks is to show someone else the business and QUICK! There is no time to think, just do-do-do. That’s why, even before you may even understand how the whole complicated system works, you are driven or pushed into already doing the business yourself. The business, in short, consists of two main concepts, sell and recruit. So that’s why Steve on the same day signed up for the business and had a home meeting, just like I did, because of this planted urgency.
3) The system is so damn complicated and layered that makes it hard to explain. In short, an ACN Independent business owner (IBO) is a sales representative and a recruiter. You get paid three different ways, from your own customers, the customers of those you recruit and the bonuses (customer acquisition bonuses or CABs) you get from being a good recruiter. The amount of money you make depends heavily on the percentages you get from your customers and bonuses, which all depends on the amount of customers you have, how many people you recruit and their customers, and the people they recruit and their customers and so on. In other words, ACN is a multilevel marketing business and how you get paid is based on a model that ACN created, one which is very different from what people are used to. Salary, wage and commission work are a lot more straight forward, you get paid a set amount to do the work, or a set amount an hour, or a set cut if you sell such idem. How you get paid with ACN is very complicated to understand and explain in just one sentence.
4) ACN’s business and compensation model resembles a scary model people call a pyramid scheme. A pyramid scheme is a multilevel marketing business where people make money by recruiting people. There are many businesses which are designed to be a scam where the products that the recruiters sell (if there are any products to begin with) are at no use or value. The way the company truly makes money is by fooling people to think there is value in the product and to pay a price to join the business. The start up fee is the company and the employee’s income. ACN differs slightly because people don’t make money by recruiting people, they make money from the services that people buy. But because ACN resembles a pyramid scheme by being a multilevel marketing business and requires IBOs to pay a start up fee, people get scared that it is a scam.
So bringing it back to home meetings, you have this complicated and sketchy business that you must present to your friends. The key is to not word vomit, and to blurt out any thing about the business at all. Chances are, by trying to explain what ACN is on the phone or without any material, you are going to scare off whoever you are trying to recruit. All you can do is be energetic and urgent when you try to get people to come to your meeting and be as vague as possible while maintaining the person’s interest. This is going to be very hard at first because people are curious and will dig for detail, especially if you’re acting different (being especially energetic and urgent) and it will be hard to brush them off. In fact, at first you’ll probably want to explain more to the people you invite because they are your friends and people you trust that will understand and hear you out. Of course, the nature of the business is far from normal that rejection and disappointment is the norm. All that is expected for you to do is follow what you are told and ignore those that don’t believe in the business.