MLM – Sitting on the fence and rules for SMBN Members

The rules of SMBN membership if your business is in MLM – Please read this as if anybody is working against these ethics they will be refunded membership and removed from the network.

Let me start with saying – you are welcome – just one very simple rule – you make it clear if you are looking grow your team, or if you are just selling the products for an extra income, there is a significant difference.  You also need to be clear from the offset what MLM company you represent and what products they sell.


I read the following quote today and it is very apt for the explanation I am about to give:

‘If women could stop throwing their sisters under the bus for their own individual gain, that’d be great.’

Now I know that hackles will already be up, and I understand why, I have worked in multi-level marketing and I have friends that have worked in MLM for years and are doing well, but I have also seen very intelligent capable women seriously dragged down by this over the years.  Here is the issue, that with a little explanation can help us all move forward and have a healthy relationship with MLM companies and the ladies who carry them.

The problem is when you claim to be living an amazing life and have an amazing business and ask people to PM or DM you for details – that is already being secretive.  If you are claiming to have an amazing life you should be transparent about how long it has taken you to be on a full-time minimum wage (i.e. at least 1K profit per month, steady income), and how many people you have working in your team to enable you to be in that position, and how long it has taken you to recruit them.  If you do not have women in your team you need to be clear about how long it has taken you to achieve that volume of sales.

There is a reason for this.  When we start in business we can all work for a year or ten without earning any money, but we are under no illusion in the beginning and we are not living on the breadline whilst others are profiting at our expense, we are living on the breadline so that we reap the rewards entirely (eventually).

There is a piece of legislation called the UK Modern Slavery Act 2015 (S.54), which calls for transparency in supply chains to ensure that they are demonstrating due diligence against slavery in their supply chain and whilst working for below minimum wage may legally escape slavery by a margin, it is certainly not ethical and is very close behind, and so the MLM chain need to know what they are likely to be working for.  It is no good to do well when people are suffering on the bottom line (and I mean seriously struggling).  So, to have (mainly) women, working very hard all year to line the bank accounts of those above them and those at the very top is what people have issue with.  If it was transparent people would not mind so much.  It needs to be clear that you can sell products for extra money, and that you can build a team to do the same, but all of these ‘amazing life amazing business posts’ are insulting people’s intelligence, and more worryingly pulling those in who do not have enough life experience to realise how hard it is to build up that level of business.

Now I do buy certain products, and I have no issue with it being the women I buy from who are the ‘middle man’ instead of the chain high street shop – there is always a margin between the manufacturer and the end user and it is okay to support women building a ‘shop from home’ business to help support them and their families.  But, at least on the shop floor the workers do have a steady guaranteed income to build on, and then there is the matter of corporate responsibility.  Bosses of MLM companies are extremely wealthy as they have a free and sometimes paying workforce, but without responsibility, i.e. holiday pay, sick pay, maternity pay, furlough, pension etc, even zero hours contracts offer median holiday pay.

The only other issue though ladies is that it is all consuming, please don’t make your friend afraid to tell you about their bloating problem because they know they will be sold to instead of listened too, be careful not to close the margin between friend and sales woman.

So ladies, you’re welcome to the SMBN as an MLM, but be clear, be transparent, do not go on a recruitment drive targeting members, this network is to raise your PR externally making it clear who you are and what you are looking to achieve.  If you are clear on your profile that you are looking to build your team, they can contact you if they want to.

On that note, I learned this week about a new company (or at least one I had not heard of before) – selling clothing.  What I loved was that the flyer handed out at the networking meeting was very transparent, very ethical, it was clear how much you could expect to earn, how long you have the kit before you have to pay for postage to return it, how the lady in the meeting was looking to recruit and how much commission would be achieved on sales.  It was very clear that you could do it for fun or work hard if you wanted to achieve £1k plus, and, it carried the following statement:

Statutory warning: It is illegal for a promoter or participant in a trading scheme to persuade anyone to make payment by promising benefits from getting others to join a scheme.  Do not be mislead by claims that high earnings are easily achieved. 

Bravo Captain Tortue! And, lovely quality clothes (I am not affiliated)

If you have issue with being transparent in the beginning you need to ask yourself why, and if you are not prepared to disclose your own chain and income you need to ask yourself why.  If this blog offends you then it is better to know now before you join that the SMBN is not the network for you.  But if you are ethical and transparent and you want to showcase what you sell then welcome aboard x

Jules, SMBN

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