Are Millennials Being Manipulated By Network Marketing Or Mentored Into Leaders?


Over the last couple of years GenY aka Millennial Generation has become a focus point for the continued growth of the direct selling aka network marketing aka MLM industry. Now I see Wallstreet and main stream media asking if specific companies are manipulating this generation.

I don’t think this is a question or issue exclusive to network marketing. We see issues in professional sports, the arts, and in general business today. What I do know is this young generation is hungry to make their mark in this world. And when they find a mentor who doesn’t over promise and under deliver, they give 100% to the mission. MillennialsJamie Gutfreund, chief strategy officer for the Intelligence Group wrote that a full 86 million millennial will be flooding the workforce by 2020 which will account for 40% of the total workplace at the time. Which means, we need to learn how to mentor the GenYer, not try and manipulate them. But that raises another question. How do you mentor a generation, so opinionated and independent? I think the first thing we all need to do is listen and learn what makes them tick! I am currently raising six GenY Millennials and each one is 100% alike and yet 100% different! For any of us to gain the trust of this generation, we need to treat them with respect and listen to their concerns and desires. Gutfreund went on to share the following stats…

  • 64% of them say it’s a priority for them to make the world a better place.
  • 72% would like to be their own boss. But if they do have to work for a boss, 79% of them would want that boss to serve more as a coach or mentor.
  • 88% prefer a collaborative work-culture rather than a competitive one.
  • 74% want flexible work schedules.
  • And 88% want “work-life integration,” which isn’t the same as work-life balance, since work and life now blend together inextricably.

Millennials don’t seem as interested in money and bling as they let on. It seems they are far more interested finding a purpose-inspired leader who will mentor and lead them in a mission focused movement. They are more team focused than past generations, and love to run in tribes! And, when a tribe of Millennials feels like they have been betrayed and manipulated, they will turn their energy directly towards stamping out whoever and whatever caused them such betrayal. They will take to social media and share with the world every little critical detail about what happened to them. They don’t do this out of personal malice, as much as they don’t want to see others harmed by the same betrayal. To them, it’s a responsibility and obligation to spread the news. So in closing, I don’t feel the media and Wallstreet are correct in portraying network marketing as a manipulative force out to harm Gen Y entrepreneurs. I have personally witnessed far more mentoring, than anything that is close to manipulation. But as a warning for the minority who might think they can manipulate these kids for their own personal agenda… Be careful, this idea doesn’t backfire on you.

Troy Dooly is recognized internationally as an influencer in the areas of personal branding, leadership development, marketing campaigns, organizational expansion, and corporate launch strategies. Dooly is a speaker, results coach, and radio host. He is a founding member, show host (Beachside CEO) and News Director of the Home Business Radio Network. He is a founding member, and currently serves on the Board of the Association of Network Marketing Professionals