5 Ways to Build a Strong Direct Sales Team

Recruiting Tips

As a direct seller, we all know there are two ways to make money: sales and a team. So, after a bit of time selling, learning all the things to know about your brand, and building your own client base, the natural progression is to build a strong direct sales team. 

Now, let me put a disclaimer on that: you do NOT have to know everything to be a leader! You just cannot be afraid to make mistakes. You’re never going to be perfect at something the first time you try it. When I was in the field, I made a lot of mistakes. I grew past them, cried through them, and mastered new skills along the way. And you know what? I wasn’t the only one. 

All new leaders make mistakes.

Let’s normalize that mindset, shall we? 

I see way too many talented direct sellers back down from leadership roles because they’re afraid they don’t have what it takes. I’ll let you in on a secret. Your mindset determines your success. So be bold, go after it, and don’t expect to be perfect. You’re going to be a different leader on day 1 than you are on day 983. You’re going to grow into it and learn more than you ever thought you could. You’ve got this! 

So, once you decide to embrace that beautiful confidence and take the plunge into building a strong direct sales team, here are the five things I think every leader needs to do to have a successful team.

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BE A LIFELONG LEARNER

To be a good leader, you need to be a lifelong learner. You need to be coachable and admit when you don’t know something. 

In life, just as in business, nothing ever stays the same. The only way to get better is constant improvement and constant change.

Think about one of the biggest companies out there—Facebook. How many times have you logged in to see a different homepage? We’ve seen Facebook change about a million and one times since we’ve been on the platform, right?

New party formats will come up, new ways to sell things will start to go viral. Video wasn’t even a thing when I was a direct seller, and now we sell mainly on Zoom and Google Chats. TikTok and Clubhouse didn’t exist a little while ago. All things in life change. So be nimble, not afraid!

Another good learning tip is leaning on those who came before you. Look at your business role models, who have done exactly what you want to do and sit at their feet and learn. 

Many direct sellers think that this innate sense of competition and that your leaders, upline, or teammates are your competition. If you think that way, this will never work for you—excuse the sass, it’s simply the truth. 

You need to have an abundance mindset and realize that there’s enough success to go around. So why not learn from those who are the most successful? It’s not a competition. 

With this real-life learning, you also have to embrace learning tools! Think podcasts, books, courses, even mastermind groups for real-time interaction with other people chasing big, bold goals like you. 

My one tip here, though, is that learning doesn’t replace activity. You need to be a doer too. Learn and implement. Then, once you master something, move on to learning the next thing.

 

SET A STRONG PACE 

As a leader, you can’t be shy about your success, and you need to push to succeed. Nothing in the direct sales business is magic. It’s all hard work, systems, and strategies.

I hear from leaders who say their team isn’t doing anything. So, I ask them what pace they’re setting as a leader. I ask if their team sees what they’re doing every day.  If your team can’t see the pace, they don’t know what to strive for! 

When I was a leader, I was super transparent about my sales and recruiting efforts. I wanted people to know what was going on in my business.

Too often, we see talking about our successes as bragging or boastful. But as a coach, your wins and strategies inspire your team to do more and be more. They need to see that what you’re doing is working, and that they can do it too. The proof is in the pudding. Do not minimize your accomplishments, and be transparent with your team!

Are your team members going to beat you? Yep. If you’re doing it right, yes, they will. You will inspire them to go for it, and they’ll succeed! Not gonna lie. This part was a little painful for me as a leader. I always thought as a leader; I should be in the lead. But this is not true. If you’re inspiring your team to go big, and they do, then you’re succeeding! 

 

BE QUICK TO PRAISE, SLOW TO CRITICIZE

I’ll be honest, friends. This one is hard for me! I’m a perfectionist. I like things to be correct. I don’t understand why people didn’t just copy/paste and do what I do. As a leader, it was hard for me to accept that other people would work at a pace that wasn’t mine or that other people would do something different from me. And that is OKAY!

You also need to praise the little wins. You need to accept that not everyone is in the business for the same reason, and everyone will have different goals. Praise that! 

When it comes to criticism, keep that out of the public eye. As a leader, your role is to ensure everyone follows your brand’s rules and represents the business well. But save critiques for one-on-one calls, not the weekly group call. Also, before you criticize, ask questions to understand the situation. Maybe they didn’t know, or the way you read something wasn’t the way they meant it. 

Give grace and give praise. That’s what it comes down to!

 

HOLD YOURSELF AND OTHERS ACCOUNTABLE

I’m going to get a little sassy here. Other people will not hold you accountable. You need to do it yourself.

I’ll give you a fun little example. My husband, the one who loves me most, is my worst accountability partner. If I say I want to lose weight, and then I have a terrible day, he offers to get me ice cream. That’s just how it goes. Other people can love you, support you, and want to be there for you. But they’re not going to hold you accountable for your big goals. So you need to do it, and you need to be that person for your team. 

Some leaders think it’s harsh to hold their team accountable. I have to disagree. There’s no one else in their life that’s going to do this for them. It is not pushy or harsh to help people achieve their goals. When one of your team members says, “This is my goal,” and you ask them what they’re doing to reach it, yeah, you may be holding their feet to the fire. But if you don’t do it, who will? You are helping them reach their goals and stay on track for success.

In my team, we also practiced transparent accountability. 

I held my leaders accountable in front of our whole team. Our cover image in the group was essentially a pacing report between my leaders. They’d get a star or checkmark that they achieved a goal.

And you know what? It created a little competition and made them go for more! 

I asked them if they thought this worked, and they all said, “Yep, it keeps us accountable.”

So keep yourself accountable and find an accountability buddy. Let it be your upline, or if they don’t do it, go above your upline. If that doesn’t work, find a sister in your business or someone that’s in a business similar to yours at an equivalent level.

I have tried a bunch of accountability partners. It’s okay if it doesn’t work out. You may have to work through a few before something sticks. Don’t give up. Just keep looking, and make sure you’re that accountability buddy for your team.

 

DEVELOP NEW LEADERS

Here is where we grow, friends. My favorite part of being a leader was building up new leaders. Your ultimate goal should be to build a team of leaders! It shouldn’t be all on you to lead a strong direct sales team of hundreds. That’s not sustainable. 

There is nothing more refreshing than working together, collaborating, and pushing one another in a team of leaders. Once you start to spread out the leadership responsibility, you can achieve more and reach bigger goals together! More heads are better than one. 

DON’T BE AFRAID TO GROW

Alright, friends. I know you’ve got it in you to be that big, bold leader you’ve always imagined. Don’t be afraid to learn, lead by example, remain accountable, and don’t be afraid of growth. You’ve got this!

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Want a proven plan for growing your business without feeling like you're chasing your tail? The Direct Sellers Business Blueprint explains the 4 key areas you must master to build a simplified, systematic direct sales business. It will even tell you which area to tackle first, so you can stop feeling overwhelmed by what to do next. It's completely FREE for a limited time.

 

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Hey, I'm Mary!

My passion is helping you simplify and streamline your direct sales business using tried and true systems that reduce overwhelm and help you reach your business goals even faster! Find out more about what we do here.

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Confused about what to do next in your direct sales business? Need a clear, simple plan on how to grow? Grab our free Direct Sellers Business Blueprint and learn the 4 key areas you must master to grow your direct sales business!

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