Strategic Thinking

How to Help Your Distributors Get More Distributors

As leaders in the direct-selling industry, you obviously have strategic clarity about the desired outcome of helping your distributors get more distributors. I want to talk here about perhaps raising your level of thinking in four areas that could have a powerful impact on that outcome: tools, listening, cascading, and High Leverage Activities (HLAs).


Think about the tools you currently have. Are they outdated? Are they the best tools you can create? Are your distributors excited to use them? Are they easy to access?

In our experience, many people don’t think at the level they could about how to make their tools easier to tap into. In all the work I’ve done with direct sales company executives, one of the biggest complaints I hear is that their distributors can’t get to their tools when they need them, and/or they don’t know the best way to use the tools. For example, you may have a website that has a lot of great things on it, and yet it’s not easy to get to or your distributors don’t know how to use it. You may need to strategically think through the use of that tool to another level.


Are you thinking strategically about training your distributors to listen? We often think about what we’re going to push out—this benefit, this case study, this success story—and yet a big piece of the puzzle in the world of building relationships is being strategic about listening.

Here’s what that could look like in direct sales: You’re teaching your distributors that when they’re working to attract someone, they’re listening well and taking notes as they’re talking to the prospect so they can communicate back to them:

  • That they’ve been heard
  • How your product or service can fulfill an expressed desire or need
  • Why joining their team will benefit them


When your top distributors are planning for an event, they usually think strategically about things like budgeting, hiring the right talent, creating a great lineup, using the best AV equipment, and all the other bells and whistles that make an event spectacular (including humor, if they’re smart). Sometimes, however, follow up is more of an afterthought. If the message from the event is to roll out a new campaign, a new direction, or a new offering that’s going to attract more distributors, then they need to be spot on about how to cascade that information so they can maintain their momentum.

Ideally, they’ve already thought ahead about follow up. I had a group in yesterday, and one of the specific things we talked about is how to prepare now, before the event, what the follow-up items are going to be. Then they can more easily get the emails, the links, and any other follow-up tools out immediately, within twenty-four to forty-eight hours after the event. When they’ve strategically thought through the follow up so it’s not sloppily done at the last minute, they get a much higher level of impact.

High Leverage Activities

Even though we talked in the last article about High Leverage Activities, I wanted to hit it again here, because helping your distributors assess the best use of their time is one of the top ways you can help them be their best. No doubt you already know and employ that concept, and yet maybe you haven’t strategically thought about how to communicate to your distributors the whole model of High Leverage Activities (HLAs).

In addition to including your current philosophy in your onboarding kits, maybe you could shift to a little higher level of communication and incorporate training to help your current distributors think about the best use of their time, or their HLAs. Let me give you an example of how that can work in attracting people for their business.

I happen to personally coach the largest recruiter for one of the direct sales companies we consult with, who calls himself “the Attractor.” He’s made attracting people to his team his top HLA, so he creates every day what he calls his “Hot 20 List”—a list of the twenty people he wants to invest time in to attract them to his business. He rewrites his list every day and carries it either on his phone or in his pocket, and he looks at it several times a day to make sure he stays on track.

Since no single skill or habit has a more powerful impact on results than the ability to eliminate distractions and focus on your High Leverage Activities, passing on that concept to your distributors could have a huge effect on your entire organization.

In future issues we’re going to continue talking about cool concepts along the “strategy” line—like Strategic Gifting, which is a new book we just launched, Strategic Networking, Strategic Health, and Strategic Acceleration. So be looking forward to several powerful communications in our column that can help you be more strategic as an executive.


  1. Think strategically about the tools you create to ensure they are up to date, easily accessible to your distributors, and easy to use.
  2. Teaching your distributors to listen strategically is a big piece of the puzzle in building relationships and attracting people to their business.
  3. Before each event, think strategically about how to cascade the information immediately afterwards so you can take advantage of your momentum.
  4. Since no single skill or habit has a more powerful impact on results than the ability to eliminate distractions and focus on your High Leverage Activities, passing on that concept to your distributors could have a huge effect on your entire organization.

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