Lisa Wilber

The Internetwork Marketer

Chris Tinney Quit a Fortune 500 to Make a Fortune

By Uma Outka

Unlike many corporate executives who work to replace an established income, Chris climbed the corporate ladder concurrently with launching his networking career. Ironically, his involvement in each business fueled his success in the other.
I t’s the last place to get gas before entering Yosemite National Park: Mariposa, California, a town of 2000, where Chris Tinney runs a large and fast-growing network marketing business.

Until a few months ago, Chris was fully engaged in two careers, one as a corporate VP of Sales for a Fortune 500 company, another as an increasingly successful part-time networker. Now that he’s networking full-time, it’s allowing him to do more still—without sacrificing the quiet comfort of small-town living.

Unlike many corporate executives who work to replace an established income, Chris climbed the corporate ladder concurrently with launching his networking career. Ironically, his involvement in each business fueled his success in the other.

“The tools network marketers use are always on the cutting edge—fax blasting, e-mail blasting, automated calling programs. I took what I was learning in the industry back to the corporate world, which is one reason I was able to rise through the ranks there so fast.”

At the same time, as a corporate executive, Chris became skilled at public speaking. His responsibility for hiring top people gave him the ability to identify leaders quickly. With the security of another income source, Chris also had the freedom to speak his mind in the corporate setting.

“I wasn’t dependent on that next check to pay my bills; I became known as the guy who would tell you what he thought.”

By the time he was making a six-figure income in network marketing part-time, he was earning a multiple six-figure income as an executive. With three corporate apartments and more phone numbers than he could keep straight, he was rarely home. That’s when he decided that as soon as he replaced the corporate income of $20,000 a month, he’d go full-time in networking.

Choosing a Different Path

When he first started his networking business, his wife Kim, a yoga instructor, thought he was crazy. He was already on the road five days a week—now he was going to spend his weekends on yet another enterprise? But it wasn’t about more money for Chris. His two sons were getting older, and he knew they wouldn’t be at home much longer.

“If I’d continued down that path, my kids would be out of school in three years, turn around and say, ‘Gee, wish we would have known you, Dad.’ In the corporate world, you tell yourself you’re doing the right thing because you can provide them with things other parents can’t—but in the end, your kids don’t want that, they want you.”

He posted a picture of the family over his desk for motivation and so Kim and their sons could see what he was working for.

“A lot of things happened when I did that,” Chris says. “I threw out everything people had told me and started from scratch, developing an Internet strategy. I knew I needed to automate the process so I could spend my very limited time talking exclusively to the most qualified people and developing them as leaders. That’s when everything started to turn.”

With the system in place, it wasn’t long before he reached his financial goal; he had no trouble leaving the corporate income behind. The pleasures of his new schedule make it more than worth it.

“Now I wake up to see the boys off to school—and I’m here when they come home.” Plus, he loves having more time for their favorite pastime: paint ball! The three have already competed around the country; their current goal is to win the national paint ball tournament together.

Chris envisions starting a non-profit group aimed at teaching entrepreneurial skills to kids. “I live about four hours from the coast, and I know half a dozen kids right here in Mariposa who haven’t been to the water. I want to get kids like this into the freedom mindset earlier.”

Chris Tinney's Fast-Growth Strategy

As you develop your business-building approach, consider these essential elements of my strategy:

A Web site and automated e-mail messaging system takes care of the initial interviewing. Automatic dialing software leaves messages for qualified people, so they hear your voice early on. The next step is a live phone appointment.

My team and I hold three 45-minute calls a day to keep the organization tuned in and growing: an opportunity call, a “getting started” call, and one for distributor support. On this last, my leaders show up with no agenda; business-builders can call in for whatever support they need.

We have a huge number of people on 90- or 120-day plans to exit the rat race forever. That’s what we specialize in—designing plans that will work for people depending on how much they have to replace, how much they have to spend, and how much time they can devote to it.

Now that I’m full-time, I can develop my networking relationships beyond just the business. Our company held a huge event recently in San Diego and I took my entire team out on a dinner cruise in San Diego harbor. Best of all, it’s tax deductible. Does it get any better than that?!