For almost fifty years, network marketing has been held as “alternative employment.” Like “alternative medicine” and “alternative agriculture.” our industry has been a possibility for only those few adventurous men and women willing to risk the stormy entrepreneurial seas outside the safe harbor of conventional business.
Now that’s changing—in large pan because of the dramatic transformation of the American workplace.
THE EMPLOYMENT SIDE
Current unemployment is at 7.4 percent (October 1992), way up from the 5.2 percent of two years ago. You know the litany—nearly two million jobs cut in nonfarm sectors in the past two years, and hundreds of thousands cut from electronics, construction, managerial/supervisory. It’s hitting collars of all colors.
A decade ago we wrestled with a 10 percent jobless figure, so that’s no big deal. Or is it?
Yes, it is. What’s different about this recession/recovery is that this time an alarming percentage of the jobs lost are gone forever. Some economic experts (such as author Paul Zane Pilzer) predict 20 percent unemployment by the year 2000. Why?
Because the changes we are witnessing in the American workplace are not just a series of seasonal or even cyclical alterations, but a dynamic transformation to a new and better way of working. The focus of business in the ’90s is “leaner, cleaner, and meaner.”
THE CORPORATE SIDE
Business cannot afford to pay the going human being wage rate if the same work can be done by a computer or a machine. An American auto worker earns sixty-five thousand dollars in pay and benefits. A middle manager makes fifty thousand dollars. If a robot or computer can do their jobs, without need for day care, life insurance, sick leave, or paid vacations, there is no dollar-sense in keeping them on. And that’s what’s happening in both blue- and white-collar professions.
Where will this cost-for-performance trend show up next? In marketing. Marketing (meaning promotion, advertising, sales, and distribution) is 80 percent of a product’s cost. If a corporation can invent a way to pay less for its marketing efforts, increase sales results in current and new markets, and pay only for sales results after those sales are made, they’ll do it. Wouldn’t you?
BOTH SIDES NOW
As jobs are cut (but not forgotten by the people who once had and still need them) and as corporations become more bottom-line oriented, network marketing will become the beneficiary of both business megatrends.
People will turn to network marketing to augment their incomes, as a hedge against unemployment, and ultimately as a positive, full-fledged career choice.
Corporations will turn to network marketing as a way to increase sales, enter new markets, and pay for both only after the results are in. In both cases and for both reasons the network marketing industry stands to benefit greatly.
THE WAVE OF THE FUTURE
Network marketing is an answer to the employment dilemma for the disenfranchised American worker and workers around the world as the networking explosions in Poland, Brazil, South Korea, and Austria attest.
Network marketing is one of the solutions to the cost versus productivity problem faced by businesses around the world.