Are MLM Distributors Entrepreneurs?

My good friend “Thomas Neal” recently penned an interesting post at an MLM Message Board. I’m reprinting it, with his permission.

Are MLM Distributors Entrepreneurs?

“Before jumping in with an automatic “of course,” keep in mind that “small business” and “entrepreneurial business” aren’t synonymous.

The word entrepreneur is, unsurprisingly, taken from the French. Its earliest usage referred to those individuals who stimulated economic growth by finding new and better ways of doing business. The 19th French economist Jean Baptiste Say states, “The entrepreneur shifts economic resources out of an area of lower and into an area of higher productivity and greater yield.”

In the 20th century, the economist Joseph Schumpter added, “the function of entrepreneurs is to reform or revolutionize the pattern of production.” The management theorist Peter Drucker writes, the entrepreneur always searches for change, responds to it, and exploits it as opportunity.” In Drucker’s words, “Not every new small business is entrepreneurial or represents entrepreneurship.”

It seems to me that duplication and replication strategies are in conflict (partial) with entrepreneurial methods. What do you think?

The pioneers who founded the first companies to utilise MLM methods found new and better ways of doing business, but does that make those of us associated with these firms entrepreneurs? (Ray Kroc was an entrepreneur, but can the same be said of McD franchise owners?)

I believe there are a few successful entrepreneurial distributors, but that success is most likely to visit those who are focused on running a non-entrepreneurial business. Do you agree?”


More On The Topic

THE 2006 SKOLL WORLD FORUM ON SOCIAL entrepreneurship, part 1:

Check back for Part 2

Tom and Nela’s Business

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