When a friend talked to her about network marketing in 2003, Helen Jamieson was absolutely set against it. “I’d seen my parents try it when I was very young. I thought it was all shoulder pads and high heels, and I was certain it didn’t work.” Fast forward a few years and Helen had earned more than a million USD in network marketing – and spent most of it.
“I did a lot of things right and a lot of things wrong!” she laughs, “I wrote ‘The Networker’ to pass on some of those lessons.”
In 2009 Helen moved to Matakana with her husband and two daughters. When her mum was diagnosed with terminal cancer that same year, she encouraged Helen to do something with her ability as a writer.
“The Networker is a story about a wonderfully feisty woman called Sally McAllister – but picture Erin Brockovich!” grins Helen. “Sally’s working a job she hates, and she’s lurched into network marketing to try and get her freedom back.”
But Sally’s hopes are crushed as she struggles to fit her business around her demanding boss, her husband’s shift work and her kids’ needs. Her friends laugh at her about network marketing and, as she fights to find the time, energy and money her business needs... she decides to quit.
“People really believe those who succeed in network marketing have special bullets!” laughs Helen. “They don’t understand that anyone who succeeds in business has tough times. They can’t imagine anyone understands their pain.”
It’s a familiar story. As a network marketing business builds momentum things can start to feel like they’re going wrong, especially if there’s a negative spouse in the picture or money and time were tight to start with.
“I’d see great team members get de-railed by their uncle’s cousin’s sister telling them network marketing doesn’t work,” says Helen, “when all they needed was a reframe - someone to point out that the broke, unambitious person telling them to quit might not be their best expert. A lot of business books are quite dry and factual, they don’t capture the feelings you experience as you’re trying to build your team. I love that one reader said that The Networker is so good you wouldn’t know you’re working!”
Readers have called the book: ‘heart-warming’, ‘inspiring’, ‘so real!’ and ‘life changing’.
“I get teary hearing from readers around the world,” smiles Helen. “It’s dedicated to mum and my goal is to reach a million readers - women who’d otherwise quit, when actually they’re so close to achieving their dreams.
“Enjoying the process is so important when you’re building a business. Those women just need a nudge to see things differently and then everything can change.”