State of the (Comm)union

Our co-founders introduce this issue's special features on community in networking, and the state of the Networking Times community itself.

Books of Notes Letters News to Use Words of Wisdom
"The Greatest Networker in the World Goes Platinum": a review of the double-book re-release of John Milton Fogg's classic Trends and signs of these networking times Quotations from famous thinkers on the nature of learning.

A panel of four guest editors on the question, "Is it virtual or belly-to-belly?"

Dietary Supplements: End of the Line?

Don Karn
We'd like to think of our ability to freely purchase and use dietary supplements as one of our inalienable rights--but that's not necessarily so. In this cogent article, Karn shows how a legislative linkage between the European Union, Codex Alimentarius and World Trade Organization could soon severely restrict our fair trade--and what you can do about it.

Got Skills?

Chris Widener
Leadership is the critical factor in building a network that survives your efforts--in other words, residual. Widener offers a primer on five critical leadership skills: the ability to: 1) communicate; 2) to see the end result long before others; 3) to define goals for yourself and others; 4) to teach others; and 5) to inspire others.

Community--For Real

John Milton Fogg
"I didn't start out to create a community. Honestly, I never thought about it." Nevertheless, in the pursuit of bringing out "the best that they could be" in the networkers he knew, says Fogg, community is what it turned out to look like.

Edison's Secret

Robert T. Kiyosaki
Schoolchildren are taught that Edison's greatness lay in his inventions. Not so, says Robert (Rich Dad Poor Dad) Kiyosaki: his greatness lay in understanding how to create the system the inventions needed for the world to use them.

Learn How You Build the Business

Michael Clouse
"Networking marketing should be an exact science; it isn't." So saying, master networker Clouse takes us on a short-course tour of the "duplicable system" idea, with its paradoxical nature: how do you harness entrepreneurial spirit in a do-it-our-way system and not squelch it?

What Copernicus Saw

Teresa Romain
Copernicus, Kepler and Galileo triggered a revolution in perspective when they showed humanity that the planets--including Earth--revolve around the sun. But why didn't anyone see this before? Because we tend to see what we believe...not the other way around. Is there a what-revolves-around-what truth you're still not seeing in your own life?

Community Building on the Web

For over 15 years, Amy Jo Kim has been designing online networks and communities. Ph.D.-trained (though she never displays the title) in behavioral neuroscience at the University of Washington, she spent five years as an interface architect at Sun Microsystems; today Ms. Kim is one of the world's leading authorities on Web-based community design and online gaming environments. She is also founder and Creative Director of NAIMA, a Web design studio south of San Francisco that develops cutting-edge "social architecture for networked communities" for such illustrious clients as eBay, Electronic Arts, Maxis, MTV, Nickelodeon, Origin, Paramount, Sony, Westwood and Yahoo. Her book, Community Building on the Web: Secret Strategies for Successful Online Communities, is considered the bible for building Web-based communities. In this interview, Kim shares her views on what elements define a truly functional virtual community, the pros and cons of virtual community for network marketers, and how in the future, the boundaries between virtual and "real" community will grow fuzzier and ultimately disappear.

Watching Out For a 47-Million-Member Community

In 1971, Neil Offen became the Washington, DC-based Direct Selling Association's first full-time staff attorney. Seven years later, he had graduated to President--and the trade association had grown into a formidable lobbying and educational force for a profession which today boasts 47 million members worldwide. In this issue, Neil talks about the ways the profession has changed in the past 20 years, the ever-challenging issue of public perception of network marketing and direct selling, and the future of the profession.

It's a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

Kim Klaver, former networking superstar and widely known speaker and trainer to the profession, teamed up with networker and consummate technology expert Dan Hollings to create a leading-edge virtual community dedicated to "Alternative Network Marketing." The raison d'etre of their virtual "neighborhood" is to create a place where network marketers could learn to present "network marketing without all the hype," and to share with others their successes and challenges in the process.

The Greatest Networkers on the Internet

After John Milton Fogg's modern classic, The Greatest Networker in the World, had sold over a million copies, a group of people began meeting on the Internet to talk about the book and its values-focused philosophy (which John dubbed "networking for the rest of us"). That group has since flourished into a full-blown online community. In this interview, John talks about his decades-old dream of bringing people in the profession together--and how the Internet has begun to allow that dream to come true.

Dave Stoltzfus: Networking Traditional Values

David Stoltzfus lived in a home with no computer--and no electricity to run one--throughout his childhood. In fact, he never even saw a phone until he was nearly 20 years old. Today, the Amish-born-and-raised Stoltzfus is a financially successful network marketer whose "Lighthouse Ministries" has found a way to give back to men less fortunate than himself.

Practice Makes Professional

Steve Siebold
Siebold looks at master presenters Keith Harrell and Bob Proctor and draws on his experiences with the Siebolds' years-running "Tiger" training pro- gram to make a point: powerful belief and enthusiasm are rooted in competence, which can be attained only with a serious commitment to practice.

Invest in Yourself First

Bob Burg
Master networker Burg reminisces about the first audio training program he purchased, and how seminal an influence it was in the successes that followed. At the time, Burg recalls, he truly couldn't afford to buy the thing--but he could afford even less not to buy it!

Increase Your Retention Rate

Gary Coxe
One of the biggest challenges people have with retention is that they often enroll the wrong people in the first place. Would you enroll someone in your business who has not the faintest idea of what's involved in running a networking business?

Know Your Netiquette

Lydia Ramsey
"The top 12 e-mail mistakes": omitting a subject line; not making the subject line meaningful; not making the header correspond with the subject; not personalizing your message; not accounting for tone; not checking for spelling and grammar; writing the great American novel; forwarding e-mail without permission; thinking nobody else will ever see your e-mail; leaving off your signature; expecting an instant response; completing the "to" line first.

Niche Marketing is Easy...

Tom Schreiter
Two cardinal rules of niche marketing: 1) choose a niche market that's easy to identify; 2) make sure your niche market is easy and inexpensive to contact.

Say Less and Sell More!

Dawn Siebold
Nine strategies for effective listening: use silence; make eye contact; use supportive body language; listen without interrupting; ask probing questions; repeat and paraphrase; eliminate distractions; empower your client to talk; use positive verbal responses.

All For One and One For All...

John David Mann
In networking marketing, there is a powerful tendency to define ourselves as loners, ruggedly different from everyone else.