Part of the huge appeal of network marketing, at least that the companies use in their marketing, is the idea that anyone can afford to start and own their own business – one that has unlimited upside potential. Associates, reps, distributors are “Independent Contractors.” At least supposedly.
But in many cases, when you try to be Independent, the companies stop paying you, and even, institute a law suit. It has happened to many reps I know who decide to build with a different company – even if they are trying to keep the new business completely separate.
I lost respect for a company that I built a very large business with. It was hard, but I decided to build a whole new and separate business with a different company and a non-competing product. The time came when company 1 told me that they stopped payment on my check. The stated reason, it was reported that that I introduced a doctor and product expert on a national level conference call for the new company. That was sufficient grounds to stop paying me, evidently.
So I am sensitive to this often difficult issue and … I applaud MonaVie’s step in this direction [emphasis mine]:
“The Open Door — Network Marketing for the 21st Century” to Protect Independent Distributors
April 02, 2008
SALT LAKE CITY–(EON:Enhanced Online News)–MonaVie LLC (www.monavie.com), creator of the leading nutritional acai blend beverage, today announced the launch of a worldwide campaign: “The Open Door — Network Marketing for the 21st Century.” The campaign calls on direct sellers and network marketers to end any and all policies and procedures that seek to bind their independent contractors with unfair and abusive non-compete agreements.
Punitive lawsuits against distributors who choose to leave network marketing companies have become a common tactic for a few companies within the industry. The goal of these suits is to discourage healthy competition and to impede distributors’ ability to make a living for themselves and their families. Even distributors who have fulfilled demanding non-compete agreements have been sued when they attempt to join another network marketing company years later.
“Non-compete agreements were designed for high-level corporate employees, not for independent contractors,” says Dallin Larsen, MonaVie founder and president. “Some network marketing companies use overly burdensome language in their agreements as a punitive tool to tie their independent contractors to them for life, often interfering with the individual entrepreneur’s ability to earn a living. It’s my belief that direct selling companies need to earn the trust of their most valued asset, their distributors, on a daily basis. If a distributor, for whatever reason, no longer trusts his or her company, that distributor should be free to go in another direction without undue restriction.”
In today’s economy, more and more people are turning to network marketing to find full-time work, or to supplement their income. However, if these prospective distributors are worried about being handcuffed to unfair contracts, they will be less likely to take advantage of the benefits that network marketing can offer to them and their families.
MonaVie’s “The Open Door — Network Marketing for the 21st Century” campaign is built upon the company’s belief that today’s network marketing distributors deserve, as independent contractors, to be liberated from outdated, abusive and generally unenforceable policies and procedures.
“Our hope in launching this Open Door campaign is to create a sea of change in how the network marketing industry works,” Larsen says. “By ensuring that distributors everywhere can work as free agents, and are not held prisoner, we can help our industry and thousands of people who are trying to provide for their families. We welcome other companies to join the Open Door campaign by reviewing their own distributor agreements to ensure that they reflect the spirit of entrepreneurship and freedom that this industry is all about.”
You can read the rest of the article at Eon Business Wire.