There actually IS a blog called MLMCoaching.com, Great site to visit and learn
This is VERY dangerous for anyone involved in a Nutritional Company because it may mean your products get pulled while they go through their Review Process.
Here’s what they’re attempting to do:
- FDA will take an unexpectedly broad view of NDI notification requirments, and an extremely narrow view of grandfathered dietary ingredients
- This guidance could have adverse impact on up to 70% of supplement products now in the marketplace
- This is only a guidance document with a 90-day comment window
- Next steps for FDA beyond the comment window remain unclear
- FDA’s reduced budget further hampers the agency’s ability to enforce stricter regulation
Our beloved Advocate and Watchdog, Rod Cook, has made a letter available on his website where you can just copy and paste AND Mail.
Please Join Me in taking this action…it’s critical…and also PLEASE share.
Effective MLM leaders are always on the lookout for good people. I think each of us carries around a mental list of what kind of people we would like to have in our MLM organization.
Think about it. Do you know who you’re looking for right now? What is your profile of the perfect MLM prospect?
What qualities do these people possess? Do you want them to be aggressive and entrepreneurial? Are you looking for leaders? Do you care whether they are in their twenties, forties, or sixties? Stop right now, take a moment, and make a list of the qualities you’d like to see in the people on your MLM team. Find a pencil or pen, and do it now before you read any farther.
My People Would Have These Qualities and Characteristics:
Now, what will determine whether the people you want are the people you get—whether they will possess the qualities you desire? You may be surprised by the answer. Believe it or not, who you get is not determined by what you want. It’s determined by who you are.
Go back to the list you just made, and next to each characteristic you identified, check to see if you possess that quality. For example, if you wrote that you would like “great leaders” and you are an excellent leader, that’s a match. Put a check by it. But if your leadership is no better than average, put an X and write “only average leader” next to it. If you wrote that by who you are “entrepreneurial” and you possess that quality, put a check. Otherwise, mark it with an X, and so on. Now review the whole list.
If you see a whole bunch of Xs, then you’re in trouble because the people you describe are not the type who will want to follow you. In most situations, you draw people to you who possess the same qualities you do. That’s The Law of Magnetism: Who you are is who you attract.
If you want leaders, you must become a leader yourself!
So, look at the Team you have so far…is this right on?
My beloved association, DRA, has become the Assoc of Network Marketing Professionals.
In the time I was their President, it was obvious that we needed to focus on “creating” MORE Professionals in the Industry and while we haven’t lost our focus on Distributor Rights (we DID publish the 1st book on Standards) we feel we will serve the entire Industry if we RAISE the level of professionalism.
What that will do for the Industry is also create MORE leaders as it became apparent to me that most distributors struggle as they either have an upline that is unable to guide them..or a Company that has no clue.
So share with me what you Believe “Professionalism” in MLM looks like. I want to know where YOU want us to focus.
May 1st, 2010 Mark this day in History when the granddaddy (Quixtar Inc., the successor-in-interest to Amway Corporation), of the MLM Industry gets smacked down on appeal for unconscionable contract terms.
Kudo’s go out to JEFF POKORNY; LARRY BLENN; and KENNETH BUSIERE, Quixstar IBO’s who had the fortitude to hang on to their belief’s and claim since 2007 and through appeal which finally ocurred on April 20, 2010
It’s a Great Day for all MLM Distributors who have been burned by the unconscionable contracts that permeate their careers in MLM/Network Marketing and the unfair requirement to arbitrate vs. litigate when complaints come up. Some of the substantial decisions of this case follow:
Page 13: “the more substantively oppressive the contract term, the less evidence of procedural unconscionabilityis required to come to the conclusion that the term is unenforceable, and vice versa.”
An agreement or any portion thereof is procedurally unconscionable if “the weaker party is presented the clause and told to ‘take it or leave it’ without the opportunity for meaningful negotiation.”
Page 14: This oppressive behavior is the quintessential characteristic of a procedurally unconscionable agreement. See Szetela, 118 Cal. Rptr. 2d at 867.
In addition, those rules were subject to unilateral amendment by Quixtar at any time. Thus, Plaintiffs were not even given a fair opportunity to review the full nature and extent of the non-binding conciliation and binding arbitration processes to which they would be bound before they signed the registration agreements or the BSMAA. These problems multiply the degree of procedural unconscionability of the ADR agreements. See Harper, 7 Cal. Rptr. 3d at 422-23
Page 15: The fact that Plaintiffs signed or renewed registration forms containing the Agreement to Arbitrate does not assist Defendants. The forms incorporated by reference the Rules of Conduct over which Plaintiffs had no say. Plaintiffs signatures thus served to make each a party to a contract they now challenge as unconscionable.
Page 17: The court identified three aspects of this ADR agreement that it concluded rendered it substantively unconscionable. Id. at 307-08. First, the agreement lacked mutuality because only the plaintiff was required to resolve his claims through the ADR process, and no similar requirement bound the defendant. Id. at 307. Second, by “requiring [the] plaintiff to submit to an employer-controlled dispute resolution mechanism
(i.e., one without a neutral mediator),” the defendant “would receive a ‘free peek’ at [the] plaintiff’s case, thereby obtaining an advantage if and when [the] plaintiff were to later demand arbitration.” Id. And third, the ADR agreement placed stringent time limitations on the plaintiff’s assertion of any claims against the defendant without placing any similar limitations on the defendant’s right to bring claims against the plaintiff. Id. at 307-08.
All of the obligations and procedures relating to the non-binding conciliation process refer directly to IBOs, not Quixtar. Conspicuously absent from this purpose is the creation of any duties or responsibilities for Quixtar.
Page 18: Quixtar reserved to itself “the sole right to adopt, amend, modify, supplement, or rescind any or all of these Rules, as necessary with respect to cases of Rules enforcement.”
It was for this very reason that the Fifth Circuit held that a similar ADR scheme in a prior version of the Rules of Conduct promulgated by Quixtar’s predecessor Amway was illusory and unenforceable under Texas law. See Morrison v. Amway Corp., 517 F.3d 248, 254-57 (5th Cir. 2008).
Page 19: As the district court concluded, the Rules of Conduct are “self-perpetuating”and therefore “inherently biased” against an IBO that seeks to challenge them.
Page 20: This lopsided advantage enjoyed by Quixtar is precisely the type of one-sidedness that the doctrine of substantive unconscionability is designed to protect against. See Harper, 7 Cal. Rptr. 3d at 423.
Page 21: Thus, as the district court pointed out, although Quixtar may be forced into binding arbitration when an IBO initiates the dispute, Quixtar is free to initiate and litigate any claim it has against an IBO in court without ever submitting the claim to binding arbitration.
Page 22: Soltani recognized that lack of mutuality is relevant to assessing substantive unconscionability, 258 F.3d at 1043, and relied on West v. Henderson, 278 Cal. Rptr. 570, 575-76 (Ct. App. 1991), which held that lack of mutuality makes contractual provisions “suspect” and upheld a nonmutual provision only after finding that it was supported by a specific justification. Particularly in situations like this one, where no special circumstance necessitates a non-mutual provision, a unilateral reduction in the statute of limitations is an indicator of substantive unconscionability. See Nyulassy, 16 Cal. Rptr. 3d at 307-08.
Another indicator of substantive unconscionability is the confidentiality requirement in the Rules of Conduct. This prohibits IBOs engaged in the arbitration process from disclosing “to any other person not directly involved in the conciliation or arbitration process (a) the substance of, or basis for, the claim; (b) the content of any testimony or other evidence presented at an arbitration hearing or obtained through discovery; or (c) the terms [or] amount of any arbitration award.” Because the confidentiality clause swept so broadly, we concluded that it was substantively unconscionable. Id. at 1078, 1084.
Page 24: Thus, while handicapping the Plaintiffs’ ability to investigate their claims and engage in meaningful discovery, the confidentiality provision does nothing to prevent Quixtar from using its continuous involvement in the Quixtar ADR process to accumulate “a wealth of knowledge” on how to arbitrate future claims brought by IBOs.
Also contributing to the total substantive unconscionability of the binding arbitration provisions is the arbitration selection procedure mandated by the Rules of Conduct.
Page 26: The use of Quixtar-trained arbitrators is to Quixtar’s advantage, and the IBOs who receive the letters are not informed of that pertinent fact.
Page 27: As the district court succinctly stated, an IBO “should not have to pay extra” to avoid the unfairness created by Quixtar’s orientation program. The district court therefore properly determined that the arbitration selection process is substantively unconscionable.
Finally, the Rules of Conduct include a fee-shifting clause that unfairly exposes IBOs to a greater financial risk in arbitrating claims than they would face if they were to litigate those same claims in federal court.
Page 28: Here we have an arbitration agreement that actually includes a fee-shifting provision and that places those costs on the IBO if it loses in a process already stacked against it.
Thank you, Judge Schroeder for your CONCLUSION: For the foregoing reasons, we hold the district court properly determined that the Quixtar ADR agreements are unconscionable and therefore unenforceable under California law. We deny Plaintiffs’ request for judicial notice as moot. We affirm the order of the district court denying Defendants’ motion to dismiss or to compel arbitration. AFFIRMED.
Now there is precendence for ALL MLM/Network Marketers to hold out for their Companies and stop the substantively oppressive, lacking mutuality, inherently biased, one-sidedness type Contracts that usually force GOOD people to leave our opportunities or never consider it at all.
The Association of Network Marketing Professionals (formerly the Distributor Rights Association) has published a book on Standards that correlate closely to this decision. Become a member and get a copy of the Standards book for your library!
If you would like a copy of the Appeal Court decision, just Contact Me and I will be happy to send it to you.
Let me know What you Think about this occurring, post your comments, I’d love to hear from you.