Tom ("Big Al") Schreiter once spoke what has become my all-time favorite summary phrase about network marketing: "Most people do network marketing everyday--they just don't get paid for it."

The utter simplicity, practicality and truth of this statement are to me the essence of what I call the "Get Rich Slow" approach to network marketing.

Here are what I consider the four cornerstones of that philosophy:


Cornerstone 1: Use, Recommend and Sponsor

This is what your network marketing business is all about. Everybody does it, or they don't build a business.

The very first thing to learn in your business is how to use the products. Once you know how to do that, you can show and tell others.

The next thing to learn is what to do to recommend the products. Once you know how to do that, you can teach others to do that, too.

The next thing to learn is what to do to sponsor business partners. Once you know how to do that, you can train others to do that, as well.

The good and great news is, as Tom Schreiter said, most people do it every day. In fact, most people are so good at using and recommending products and services they value and enjoy, you could accurately call them "experts." Since most people are masters of using and recommending, those two are usually pretty easy for people. The third step, sponsoring, is accomplished by...


Cornerstone 2: Shipping and Receiving

Network marketing is all and always about talking to people--whether live, on the telephone, in print, using recordings or videos...or digitally, with web pages, email, chats, or Internet instant messaging. The quality and quantity of these conversation "connections" will lead directly to a person's success in this business.

My coach, Kurt Wright, has said that the number one cause for network marketers' failure is having the wrong agenda. They set out to "get" people to become customers and business partners. Most people respond to someone trying to get them to do something, even when and if it's good for them, with a fight-or-flight reaction.

With "shipping and receiving," the agenda is simply to connect with people, the purpose being to see if they and you (and your product/service) are a "fit" for each other. This approach is rejection-free and has much higher odds for success.

The four phases of "shipping" are (in this order, because one must precede and leads into the next): relationshipping, friendshipping, partnershipping and leadershipping. Do this shipping business well, and you'll receive all the personal, professional and financial rewards. The more and better your shipping is, the more and better your receiving will be.

And how you learn to be more and better at shipping and receiving is through...


Cornerstone 3: Coaching and Leadership

Coaching is the fastest way for you to build a large and successful network marketing organization--and have your people do the same. This is because network marketing is all and only a person-to-person affair. Your business will grow only as big and as fast as you do--as a person.

Teachers, trainers and consultants show you how to do things to become successful. A coach shows you who to be. As Carol McCall says, in the e-book Everybody Needs a Coach, "Coaching is asking powerful, provocative, productive, problem-solving questions. Coaching comes from the philosophy that people already have their answers. Your job as a coach is not to tell; it is to be skillful at asking the questions to which people already have the answers."

Network marketing is all about leadership: first becoming a leader, then coaching the men and women in your organization (those who have the natural talent and desire) on what inner and outer actions to work on and play with to become leaders themselves. With three to five "walk-away leaders" in your group (men and women who will build the business with and without you), your success in network marketing is inevitable.

In network marketing, a leader is a coach; the very best leaders--those who develop more and better leaders in their organizations--are always the very best coaches.

And all the above requires the last and most important of the four cornerstones:


Cornerstone 4: Speaking and Listening

Other than taking care of your body (dead, dying and dysfunctional human beings don't build large, lasting downlines), this is all you ever do in network marketing: You speak and you listen. Learning as much as you can about these two most fundamental of all human skills is the most important thing you will ever learn.

You can learn to speak and listen in ways that literally move people to take heartfelt, enthusiastic, committed action...that have people feel special, happy, excited, and truly connected with you--darn near falling all over themselves in their appreciation of you (and of themselves!)--and wanting more of you (and what you're offering, too).

You can learn to speak and listen without mental judgments. You can learn to speak and listen in ways that open up possibilities, tap into intuition, get quickly and deeply to the heart of the matter; ways that validate, rather than violate.

Speaking and listening is the simplest cornerstone to understand, and the hardest for most people to master. Speaking is asking great/right questions. Listening is truly hearing both the words and the music.

These are the four cornerstones of the Get Rich Slow philosophy for your network marketing business-building, for growing your business--and yourself--like The Greatest Networker in the World.


JOHN MILTON FOGG is author of The Greatest Networker in the World. You can check out what John is up to with coaching at: