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From Zero to the Life He Dreamed About

Article by: Rob Robson
February 27, 2014

Rob Robson is one of those success stories one likes to read: grows up in a working-class household, gets in a little trouble as a teen then meets the right mentor and soars in the network marketing industry. Here is Rob spinning his own “Robson to Riches” yarn:

My parents owned a restaurant and dinner theater, and I learned from them that owning a business doesn’t always mean freedom. Mom and Dad always worked 80 or 90 hours a week and supervised 40 employees. I was pretty sure I didn’t want that kind of job; like many high school and college kids, I wasn’t sure what I did want to do.

When I was 15 years old a guy pulled up to our house in a Ferrari, sat down with my parents, and talked to them about network marketing. He left my parents with 12 audio cassettes—our whole family sat around the living room and listened to all 12 that weekend. I had never heard anything like it—the description of lifestyle and freedom and changing people’s lives. From that time forward that was all I wanted to do.

My parents got started in the profession; they started building very quickly and got to a level of making $2,000 to $4,000 a month within their first year. I thought, ‘man, we’re definitely going to be multi-millionaires,’ but five years later they were pretty much the same size. We just couldn’t seem to find a way to get past the the attrition of people quitting just as fast as they were joining.

From when I was about 16 until I was almost 21 years old, I got into a lot of trouble. I was very rebellious, got involved with the wrong crowd, and developed some destructive habits. When I was 21, I finally moved back home—really trying to change my life.

At that point my self-esteem was so damaged, I really didn’t feel like I could ever have the success that I had dreamed about—I had just screwed up too badly. It was at that point I was really blessed, and my parents introduced me to the man who would become my first mentor—someone I knew very well. This guy made several million dollars a year in network marketing and he was kind enough to agree to mentor a 21-year-old kid.

He told me, “Rob, I’ll coach you on how to change your life if you listen to everything I tell you to do.” I said, “I’ll do it, whatever it takes!”

Taking the Necessary Steps

For six months he had me on a media fast: no TV, no newspaper, no movies. He told me, you have to close your mind tightly to all negativity. You’ve got to reboot your whole mainframe because it’s been polluted with viruses.

In order to install the “new programming” he had in mind, he had me purchase hundreds of cassette tapes. I had a little Sony Walkman on my hip and I worked a job in car sales about 70 hours a week. I would just have an earphone in one ear as I walked the lot and would listen to five to ten hours a day of success training, leadership education, philosophy, economics and people skills. And I started reading for the first time—I’d never read books in my life—including books like, Think and Grow Rich, The Magic of Thinking Big, Personality Plus, and How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling.

I started walking through this new library of philosophy and information which was changing the way I was thinking. Within 30 days of taking in this new material, I started to build my business. Over the next month I showed 30 presentations to people—pretty much everybody I knew.

And every single person said “no.” One hundred percent “no’s.”

The next month I showed 30 more presentations. This was a huge deal for me, just to show a presentation: just to pick up the phone to cold call scared me to death. However, I was driven with this new accountability process I had learned from a mentor; a mentor who I could tell cared for me, who had my best interests in mind and knew what he was talking about.

During the second month I was meeting people at Circle K or wherever else—I’d made a commitment that I would never let my head hit the pillow before showing a business plan to somebody.

Dead Broke but Still Pushing

I persisted, and I must admit I was totally broke, spending money I didn’t have. I put $3,000 on a credit card to buy extra tools during that time. Yet, because I persisted, things started to turn around—very slowly.

During that period I sponsored one guy and, through his list, was able to sponsor his girlfriend. Then, hey, their lists were my lists! That was my secret: when I ran out of names, their lists became my new names. I made calls with them and for them off their lists and got a couple more people. After 60 days of showing 60 presentations, I had four people on my team and I was so fired up. I’d go to the meetings and I’d be thinking, “I got half a row, look at that, that’s my row!”

Even though I continued to get so many noes, I knew that if you plant, you will reap. I could see that those who decided to make this into a profession sponsored a lot of people, and I knew that if I kept persisting—kept doing what I was doing—I would get good at it.

By the end of those first several months, my mind was so different: my belief was so high and I was starting to sponsor people. Over the next 30 days we sponsored 16 more people. We started to put a real team together; from that 16, the next month we sponsored 25.  The month after, we sponsored 45.  The month after that, we sponsored 52.

Soon thereafter I wasn’t rich, but I was making about three grand a month with a team of a little over 100 people.

On December 31st of 2000, I walked into my boss’s office and we had this conversation:

“Bob, you know the business that I told you about? That, you know, you laughed at and said I was stupid?”

“Yes I do … and I’m sorry.” (He thought it hadn’t worked out and I’d quit)

“No, Bob, actually it’s worked pretty well.”

“Really?”

“In fact, it’s worked so well it’s no longer financially feasible for me to show up to work anymore and I’m gonna have to let you go, Bob.”

New Life as an Entrepreneur

At that point I was 21 years old and I went full time as an entrepreneur. I didn’t retire and sit beside a pool. I started working the business 60, sometimes 70 hours a week. I started hitting it like it was my full-time job, plus some.

The following year I met my wife (Kenyon) at a meeting I was speaking at and used my newly developed persuasion powers to get her to marry me just 6 months later!  Over the next several years we got to a six figure income (working together as a team), and we started to speak all across the world–teaching people how they could change their lives as we had done.

It’s been 13 years in this profession now. We’ve been able to see so many places, we’ve been able to have some phenomenal toys and go on so many great vacations. The biggest thing is we get to home school our kids, and my wife and I get to be full-time parents. We get to have our priorities straight.

Prior to this if somebody would have asked me what my priorities were, I would have said: faith first, family second, and money way down below. If you looked at my calendar however, you would see that I worked 70, sometimes 80 hours a week for money and that I spent very little time on faith and family. Now we’ve been able to really shift and live our priorities instead of our obligations.

I get to tell this story every day—if you’re new in this profession, what I want you to remember is this: you are creating the story that you get to tell people the rest of your life.

Advice for Newcomers to Network Marketing

My mentors Orin Woodward and Chris Brady taught me a long time ago there’s a success pattern that everybody who has ever succeeded in anything follows. It starts with “define, learn, do.”

Define what you really want your life to be like. This has to be very specific and you have to have so much emotion and drive that you’re not willing to settle for less. It doesn’t matter how long it takes, how many noes you get: it doesn’t matter.  Think: “I’ve decided that I’m going to raise my standards. I have a picture of success that my life’s going to be about and I’m going to be about it until I get it.” That defined dream will give you the hunger to catapult you to do what you need to do to get it.

The next step is to learn. This is really about finding a mentor; finding somebody who already has the success you’re looking for and who’s willing to guide you and teach you. So many people in network marketing make the mistake of focusing on companies or products or compensation plans.  The key is following the leaders.

Don’t follow a company. Companies can screw up, products can change and comp plans can change. None of that is the key. The key is building a community. That community starts with who are you following, and you’ve got to follow somebody who is worthy. You really have to interview and find a mentor who’s worthy to be followed, who has the success you’re looking for, and is willing to give you the time to coach you along.

I remember when I first heard about the importance of mentors and I thought, “Is that kinda like a boss?” My associates said no, that’s a tormentor – different than a mentor. A mentor is somebody who has your success in mind.

The last element: you must be able to do the work. It’s not easy when you have a full-time job while trying to build a network. This profession is not designed for you to quit your regular job and start network marketing. It’s designed to start part-time; but you have to build it using all the time left over outside your other job.

You should plan to put in 15 to 20 hours a week consistently. I’ve never coached anybody who worked that schedule consistently for a couple of years who wasn’t either job-optional after a couple years or really close.

Plan, Do, Check and Adjust

Define, learn, do.

The next layer—usually picked up during the learning phase – is using what we call the PDCA process. This is plan, do, check, adjust. Every month I have a plan for exactly what I’m going to accomplish when I coach people and work with my mentor. If you don’t have a plan every month, you’re not even trying. If you have not helped your team create a plan, don’t expect your team to grow.

You have to catch the vision, you have to create a plan, you have to be willing to do the work; then you can come back and simply check it.

“How’d we do?”

“Did we hit the goals set? No? Why not?”

Use the wisdom of a mentor to make adjustments, create a new plan, and if you do that—if you follow that simple PDCA process, plan, do, check, adjust—you’ll go from wherever you are now in skills (wherever you are now in being able to bring value to the marketplace) to someone who can be a successful leader of tens of thousands of people and do anything you want in the world with this profession.

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All Articles, MLM 101—Your MLM Business Plan, MLM Success, Personal Development for Entrepreneurs

Rob Robson

Rob Robson has been happily married to his wife and business partner, Kenyon Robson for 11 years. Together they have 4 beautiful children and lead...

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Comments (25)

  • nolangarvin - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    That was well put by an amazing leader. Thank you Rob and Kenyan Robson, and Life Leadership for helping me and my family live the life we have always wanted to live.

  • Jonathan Mecham - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    What an amazing success story and a great message. Rob and Kenyon have been fantastic mentors to so many in our community. The reason, I think, is they are so sincere. Rob put in the work to chase the life he wanted. He had to change a lot to get it. We all do. I’m so grateful that Rob introduced us to the LIFE community and the leadership of people like Orrin and Laurie Woodward and Chris and Terri Brady. Now we’re chasing the life we always wanted!

  • Camon and Rachel - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    This is a phenomenal and inspiring history for sure!

    We have known Rob and Kenyon for a year and a half, and we are still learning strong leadership priciples from them both! For example, when Rob says that the best success mentor is the one who cares for you and wants to help you achieve your dreams, then you can count on it being true, as we have!

    This type of learning is not for the faint-of-heart. The best opportunity that I have seen so far to get EASY access to this kind of top-level success training and how to live the life you’ve always wanted, is in the LIFE Leadership training!

    Thank you for sharing your dreams, your struggles, and your victories with us. Here is to many more victories!

  • Robert Teeter - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    Way to go. Rob Robson is my mentor. I love the truths he brings out in me. LIFE Leadership has changed my life as it can anyone who wants more out of life. By helping me strengthen my skills Rob has taught me to focus on categories such as faith, family, finance, fitness, following, freedom, friendship, and fun. Thank you for blessing not just mine but my families lives.

  • Chad & Julie Palmer - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    We are grateful that Rob & Kenyon learned this concept because they have been able to teach it to us. We are so blessed to be working along side of these amazing people in the Life Leadership business and can’t wait to travel more with them to the beaches of the world.

  • Jeffrey West - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    Wow! Awesome story! I’m truly blessed to have you as my mentor in LIFE Leadership! It’s time to put myself on a “media fast” and reprogram myself for positive action! Thanks Rob!!

  • Brandon J. Garvin - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    I have been in Life Leadership since December 7, 2013. I have had the pleasure of life changing information coming into my life and the life of my family. Life Leadership is the chance given to someone to live the life they have always dreamed of living, or the life you were meant to live.
    I was introduced to the Life Leadership team by my good friend a cousin Nolan Garvin and His wife Meagan. They showed up at my house one night and left a couple of Cd’s and placed a book entitled “Letters to Lindsey” by Terri Brady. Then they left a Cd called “Buried Treasure” by Chris Brady, one of the Cd’s in the Edge series offered by the Life Leadership team of Orin Woodword and Chris Brady.
    My thirteen year old son took this Cd and the rest is another great story, but it made me realize that my family really needed something and I now know that something is Life Leadership.
    I really loved the story that Rob Robson shared on this Web page, I have found Rob Robson a man that is truly worthy to follow. He really knows his way in the team building world. He is completely selfless and will do anything for the members of his team, I can personally validate that! Rob is a great leader in the Life Leadership opportunity and His skill as a speaker, instructor, and mentor is based solely on the effort of teaching truth based materials in the Life Leaderships eight F’s; Faith, Family, Finances, Fitness(mental as well as physical) Following, Freedom, Friends, and Fun.
    I think this article was insightful for the seasoned veteran of home based business or direct selling as well as the newest of interested parties as myself.
    Thank you Rob and Kenyon for all that you do and all that you will do for us in the future of Life Leadership we are led well.
    Brandon J. Garvin
    Brandon J. Garvin

  • Linda Cook - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    Rob is the most inspirational and excited person I know who truly loves to help others reach their goals. As we build our LIFE Leadership business, we are looking forward to have Rob as our mentor. Rob, you are awesome and I love your enthusiasm to inspire others and teach how we can reach our dreams and goals and live the life we’ve always wanted to live, job optional! Thanks, Rob!

  • Tanner and Jill Garfield - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    Rob is a giant among men. I am so grateful Jeremy and Echelle Slade introduced me to Rob and the whole Robson family. What an amazing group of people. It truely gives me hope for our country knowing that there are leaders out there like Orrin Woodward, Chris Brady, Rob Robson, Kevin Conover, Jeremy Slade, and so many others that are ready and willing to make a difference. A difference from the ground floor building up, not political rhetoric coming down.

    I’m lucky to know several of these leaders at a personal level and I have experienced nothing other than greatness. I am so grateful. Keep up the good work guys! Thank you!

  • Michael D Madsen - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    What an incredible success story. You are truly living the life of your dreams! The LIFE Leadership development system has paid you well, and continues to bless the lives of people everywhere. What an incredible opportunity; available to anyone that dares to dream! Though not easy, this proven system, if followed will lead anyone to incredible levels of success and personal awareness. You can live the life that most people will never aspire to! 2L

  • Brian & Nikki Wooten - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    It is so inspiring to know where you have been and where you have come to simply by plugging in to a proven system. We are so blessed to be a part of your team and to have your leadership! Your experiences reflects the truth that success lies on the other side of inconvenience. Thanks for being willing to share from your heart and to send hope to those of us on the earlier side of the journey. Life Leadership truly is our best shot to live the life we always wanted! See you at the top!

  • Mark Eich - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    Very well said! We can all learn from Rob’s example. You don;t have to be old to be wise.

  • Tom & Roz McWilliams - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    WOW! Life Leadership, The best shot at living the life you’ve always wanted. It’s not just a tag line, it is the truth. We know Rob and Kenyon and have found them to be phenomenal people. We have seen success first hand that is a direct result of their mentoring. I have shaken hands and spent time with some of the best people I have ever met in the last 3 months that we have been members of this organization. We have been truly blessed to meet these people and have access to the information that is available. It truly is life changing.

    Tom and Rosalyn McWilliams

  • Jeremy & Echelle Slade - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    Rob & Kenyon Robson have been amazing mentors to Jeremy and I for many years. We are so grateful for the leadership they have provided through our endeavors. The LIFE Leadership Orrin & Laurie Woodward and Chris & Terri Brady have created that Rob is referring to is like no other. We are tremendously greatful and know that anyone that becomes affiliated with the Robson Family will be blessed.

  • Michael and Patience Marks - Reply

    Mar 27, 2014

    How awesome!!! Rob and Kenyon are two of the best leaders and mentors we know. We would follow Rob any where. I have learned more from Rob in the past few years then I have my entire life. We are very thankful to Them both and to Life Leadership for giving us a new hope in our lifes.

  • Scott and Josee Martin - Reply

    Mar 28, 2014

    What an inspirational message! Rob models his message every day, living life with an unmatched energy and enthusiasm and creating a great example for those of us who are blessed to be on his LIFE Leadership team. Rob’s commitment in helping others who desire to improve their lives to grow into the best leaders they can be is impressive. But even more important to me is his character. He does what he says he will, at a minimum, and leads with integrity.

    Awesome story, Rob!

  • Easton Kelsey - Reply

    Mar 28, 2014

    It has been a privilege to count Rob as a close friend over the last 3 plus years. I have seen him grow tremendously as a leader. He was always one of the best performers and speakers I have ever seen but his humility and true compassion for others has catapulted him to a true leader of leaders. I have no doubts Rob and Kenyon will be leading thousands of people by the end of the year and will be a Policy Council member of Life Leadership and a LIFE Coach in 2015.

  • Cynthia Bates - Reply

    Mar 28, 2014

    So thankful for the Robson family and for the friendship we have with them. Rob has taught me so much and been such a great leader. Love being part of his team. Our family is truly blessed to associate with Rob and Kenyon.

  • Rodney & Brenda Kilhoffer - Reply

    Mar 29, 2014

    Love, Love, Love hearing Rob and Kenyon’s story. They are amazing and inspirational leaders and we are so blessed to call them friends and mentors. We’ve grown so much under their leadership and are so excited to follow in their footsteps.

  • momma Robson - Reply

    Mar 29, 2014

    I couldnt be more proud of my kids! Rob and Kenyon are truly making a difference, in so many lives! They are an example of living the “Life Leadership” principles, and helping others do the same. So proud of them!

  • Kaylee and Trevor - Reply

    Apr 6, 2014

    What a great story! I love the opportunity I have to learn from Rob and Kenyon as I practice the success principles they are teaching. We got involved with Life Leadership because we wanted the life that they were living. And I’m so thankful that Rob doesn’t just preach the principles, he lives them and through his mentoring, helps us to do the same. I love the mindset that we are creating our story. It helps put the setbacks in perspective; those trials are just great backstory!

  • Mike Sagnimeni - Reply

    Apr 14, 2014

    Job well done! Rob is truly an inspiring leader all because he was willing to apply self-discipline. He is someone that everyone should look upto because of his character and persistence. Because of his willingness to be a better person, thousands of lives and marriages will be better. This country is definitely going to be on the right track with Rob creating the leaders that it needs!

  • Marcus North - Reply

    Apr 17, 2014

    Rob, we love your story, and knowing you and Kenyon makes it that much better! Your leadership and wilingness to serve us means the world to us, thank you! And thank you for bringing Life Leadership to us – Fired Up!

  • Ralph and Maurine Heninger - Reply

    Mar 12, 2015

    Amen to all that has been said, thanks so much for hanging in there and not being afraid of the NO’s.

  • Tim Goldsmith - Reply

    Nov 16, 2015

    Rob I joined Life in June 2015. It is now November 2015 and you have inspired me to push through my fears and actually head towards achieving the life I’ve always wanted! Thank you!

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