Is it just me or are Kenyans in love with Multi Level Marketing and anything else that can make them quick money?
I’m totally shocked at the number of new Multi Level Marketing or network marketing companies hitting the Kenyan market. The common thread about all these MLM companies is the promise they give to their members of wealth and riches.
The business model is very simple. Each member has to create a network of people around them who are selling and consuming the products that are being sold. Many of these companies make this sound very easy. Just get 2-4 people below you who need to invest a certain amount of money and ‘help’ each of them do the same.
Here are a Few Multi Level Marketing Companies Operating in Kenya
- Forever Living
- Green world
Many people see these MLM companies as a great solution to the problem of unemployment. Directly selling is the way to go for any distributor who wants his products and services to penetrate the market and sell in volumes. The business model for MLM is sound, although there are many scams out there.
Having said that, I have my reservations and negative feelings about MLM’s. My issue is not the business model but the attitude of Kenyans. We are a society that is always on a rat race, chasing after the next big thing. We somehow do not have the patience to work out a business, any business until it becomes a stable going concern.
You join one MLM company and you are all passionate and enthused about the prospects of becoming a millionaire. Every other day, you attend motivational talks and it becomes your life’s goal to introduce everyone you can get to this new business.
Before long, you are out of steam and you cannot see any tangible progress in creating a super active down line. You come up with a brilliant solution to all your problems. A very simple solutions. It goes like this: “Why don’t I join that other MLM company? Their products seem to be moving and they seem like an excited bunch of people.”
Kenyans, when will we ever learn?
The Mirage of Multi Level Marketing
MLM’s are a mirage. You are chasing after the wind. I am not a business guru but my few years of experience tell me that a business model that depends on people’s hard work and commitment is a bad business model. Men are fickle. They are here today and gone tomorrow.
To make it even worse, many Kenyans are joining MLM’s as a side show. They still want to hold on to their regular jobs. Why? Unless a man is committed and sees no other choice for survival, he will not give you 100%. MLM’s can only work when everyone is giving 110%. Do not hold any dreams that your down line, half of whom are employed anyway will be your escape to financial freedom.
Everyone I know around me is either in an MLM or being chased by a relative to join one. When you attend their presentations, they make it sound like it is a breeze to create a down line of 1,000 people who will operate optimally. So I wonder, exactly who will you sell this idea to when everyone is trying to sell the same idea?
And don’t forget the negative attitude people have especially after making huge losses in certain pyramid schemes! (No need to mention any names.)
Wake up Kenyans.
The 80-20 rule applies even harder to this industry. Statistics show that only about 10% of distributors get a regular cheque that can sustain them and only 1% of that 10% become wealthy purely as distributors.
Many of these companies fold up after a few years and leave you holding on to a dream that will never come true.
The only beneficiaries of these MLM’s are the first 10 guys who entice a thousand of you and pack you in their down line. For the rest of your stay there (which will not be long), you will enrich these top guys.
And the rate race continues. After a number of moves, you move to other things or another MLM. You continue with your chase after money and riches.
Here is my advice to you. Take that money and invest in something you can manage and wholly control. Buy a pig or some chicken. Grow some vegetables in your backyard or use a sack on your balcony.
There is a Dark Side to Multi Level Marketing
I know we are all looking for the same thing. Financial freedom. We just have to rethink the strategies we use and reevaluate our commitment.
Do not join a fad business just to be part of the crowd. If you must join an MLM, join it for the right reasons, understand the task ahead and stay on it and make it work. If you are depending on the over-zealous MLM presenters who are trained and skilled at the art of persuasion to tell you exactly what you are up against, think again.
In case you don’t know, being a part of an MLM does not mean you own the company or its products. You are not in any way in charge of your destiny. Someone else is. You are just a means to and end. Someone else’s end.
If don’t believe me, do your own research on the dark side of Multi Level Marketing.