Articles > Jesus Speaks on Prospecting


Situational prospecting (turning everyday random encounters into mutually beneficial prospecting conversations) is a fascinating subject. As a combination of science and art, it is both concrete and abstract. Thus, the notion of prospecting evokes a wide range of thoughts and emotions. To the novice, it can seem mysterious, daunting, perhaps frightening. Seasoned team-builders on the other hand, usually associate positive emotions with prospecting. They often prospect with ease and many of them actually enjoy the process. 
You may abhor it, or adore it, but this fact remains: some aspects of prospecting are carved in stone and simply arent negotiable. There are, in fact, eight such concrete aspects to prospecting. Think of them as laws--the Eight Laws of Prospecting. 
This article focuses on the 2nd law of prospecting. The law was spoken of well before modern Network-Marketing came about. It's been around for at least two-thousand years. As far as I can tell, the earliest publication of this law is found in the bible. Specifically, in the book of Mark--chapter 6, verse 4. In this verse, the King James Version quotes Jesus as follows: 

"A prophet is not without honor but in his own country,
and among his own kin, and in his own house."

In Prospecting Rules!, I paraphrased the 2nd law of prospecting like this: "The people who don't know you will take you more serious than the ones who do know you." If you've shared your opportunity with more than one or two of your relatives, you probably know all too well the veracity of this law. If you knew some of my relatives, you might think that this should be the first law of prospecting.
It's natural for us to offer our opportunity and/or product to the people we know and love. At the very minimum, we want them to share our excitement. Unfortunately, for many of us, family members don't want to use the product or share our excitement. There are a number of reasons for this, but I believe that one reason in particular is the most compelling.
The people who know you are familiar not only with your successes and victories, but also with your failures and defeats. Human nature, being what it is, tends to focus on negativity. So, what are your relatives thinking? How successful you've been? Hardly. It does happen, but it's not the normal reaction. 
Now let's step back and look at what's going on, here. You present your opportunity to a relative. What that relative sees is a way to make money that he doesn't completely understand. His limited understanding inhibits his belief in the opportunity. His knowledge of your past failures, in turn, inhibits his belief in you. This is one case where two negatives do not make a positive. It's no wonder relatives don't normally have constructive responses to our opportunities. The real surprise is that any of them respond favorably!
Don't use this article as a crutch. If you're thinking, Yes! Now I have a reason for not talking to my relatives, you're missing the point. If you believe that your opportunity and/or product can improve their lives, you should share it with them. So, the point isn't to avoid talking to them. The point of the article is to help you understand the dynamics at play. That way, you can keep your family's response in perspective.
Jesus is the one who first quoted the second law of prospecting and yet he shared His story with strangers and relatives alike. It's just that He got a better response from people who didn't already know Him. Most of the apostles were strangers when Jesus met them and they joined His team. Then, when the apostles duplicated Jesus by repeating the story, more people joined and the team grew exponentially. As a result, strangers or not, countless lives were touched in a positive way. 
In their phenomenal best-seller, The Go-Giver, Bob Burg and John David Mann, provide us a beautiful expression of the Law of Compensation:  Your compensation is directly proportional to the number of lives you touch in a positive way.  
And after all, isn't that the point? 

Russ McNeil writes and trains for the Network Marketing and Direct Sales industries. His content is laser-focused on the subject of prospecting. When he first entered the industry years ago, he was completely ill-prepared. Eventually, through trial and error, extensive personal development and sheer determination, he mastered the art of prospecting. Through his engaging presentation style, hard-won experience and appealing sense of humor, audiences and readers from a wide range of companies have learned fresh insights into the crucial, yet often misunderstood subject of prospecting. To discover more, visit You are free to reprint, distribute and share the article above as long as this paragraph remains intact and attached. © 2011 Russ McNeil.

Russ McNeil