Authors note: Glenn Turner is my sales hero, guru, and champion all in one. In 1972 through his tapes, movies and books, Glenn Turner taught me how to sell, and the principles of achieving and maintaining a positive mental attitude. Yes, there were others (Napoleon Hill, Dale Carnegie, Earl Nightingale, Bill Gove, J. Douglas Edwards to name a few), but none like Glenn. I had never met him, only heard his tapes and watched his movies until last April. Twenty three years after I took his first lessons: What a rush. The following interview is compiled from several meetings. I have eliminated my questions from this writing, and am letting his answers form a story. I hope you enjoy it, and use the message to achieve as I did.
Who is Glenn Turner?
Glenn W. Turner is the king of network marketing. A sharecropper’s son, with an 8th grade education and a harelip (cleft palate), he turned a $5,000 (in 1967) investment into 300,000,000 (three hundred million) in five years.
How did he do it? By having a great idea, and believing in himself. He thought he could. Turner created a company, developed a self-belief system that could not be penetrated, and then taught others what he knew to be true through the medium of network marketing.
As an originator, you pay a price for blazing a trail. Network marketing is a household concept today, but back in the 70’s, it had the same stigma as “franchising” network marketing was known as “pyramiding.” And the strong arm of the law was reaching out to hammer Turner at every turn.
“Many things led to civil actions against me,” said Turner as he gazed off reflecting on his lost empire. “Political pressures, bad press, jealous people, parents envious of their children making $20,000 a month, lawyers wanting more work if I told you some of the stories, you would tell me I should write a book well I did, and you can buy one today.”
“Jeffrey, I tried to contact government officials about how to run my businesses legally, they said ask your lawyer. I just wanted someone to tell me what I could and could not do.” said Turner. “They would never tell me what the rules were partly because they didn’t know them, and partly because they had no laws to govern network marketing, specifically. They didn’t like me because I was too fast and too good. Government officials feared me. I was making millions and they were making thousands.”
“In Washington, DC, 17 policemen joined me full time in my business, the police chief got mad, and had a “cease-and-desist” order issued on me. By the time I won in court, his people had to go back to work but they made more money in a week with me than they made in a year on the job and they didn’t get shot at once. (I got shot at by their boss.)”
“In five years I received 1,800 awards including two honorary doctorate degrees, and had 1,100 civil lawsuits filed against me and my 78 companies. The way I look at it is you subtract the lawsuits from the awards, and I’m still 700 ahead of the game.” (That’s attitude.)
“In those days it was who you knew, and I didn’t know anyone important. I was naive. I figured it was America, everyone was equal. I believed my teacher that we were in the land of the free. I was wrong. I was in the land of ‘pay to be free’.”
“I spent millions carving legal pathways. Network marketing companies like Amway, NSA, Quorum, Herbalife, and Mary Kay are all legally operating today because Glenn Turner blazed a trail in the 60’s and 70’s, and took a fall in the 70’s and 80’s.” (Turner took a 300 million dollar fall.) “In my new book, Turner, Turner, Turner The King of Network Marketing, I’m able to tell details of what happened to me, and how those events shaped the network marketing industry as we know it today.”
“When Dare to Be Great (Turner’s company) was hot, I was so real, I was unreal. I waved my harelip like it was a wand. I recruited thousands of people with no videos, conference calls or credit cards.”
“My success was training people to believe in themselves and their dreams first, and then providing a path of encouragement for them to achieve. My greatest secret was me. I wiped away their excuses. If a sharecropper with an 8th grade education and a harelip could make a few million, anyone could.”
End of part one. Clip and save. Part two will be here next week.
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