During my first 2 years as a struggling home business entrepreneur dreaming of making big money and leading a free lifestyle, I made many mistakes. Some of those mistakes cost me money. Others caused me heartache, and a few almost completely destroyed my faith that an ordinary person like me could dream of extraordinary things.
But I have also made a handful of good decisions, and at the top of that list is my decision to become a member of the IAHBE. The IAHBE (http://www.iahbe.org) stands for International Association of Home Business Entrepreneurs. In one sentence, it is simply "An online Home Business University with an extensive Learning Center packed with home business information, reports, articles, seminars and other content put under one roof."
Being an exclusive paid membership resource, I was very half-hearted at first at the thought of spending a good $29 for something as intangible as "information". As I once asked myself, many people now ask me this question: "Can't I get this information for FREE on the Internet? So why do I need to pay for it?"
I have to admit that this is a valid question. And I have to agree that you CAN find similar (but not exact) information for free, scattered around the Internet. So why choose the IAHBE? How can it help you?
Let me tell you my story, from the point of view of an entrepreneur living in Malaysia, while trying to build a global business on the Internet. This is how it changed my life...
1) Your Words are the Holy Truth
Not too long ago, I used to think that my ex-MLM upline leader had my best interests at heart. I thought that the meetings I went for and the methods they preached were the only way to build and market a home based business.
That couldn't be any further from the truth. For example, my upline thought me these lessons about prospecting:
a) Go door-to-door and ask people to come to the Opportunity Meeting...
b) NEVER mention that it is a "business opportunity meeting"...
c) Personally go to the prospect's home and bring them to the opportunity meeting...
d) Make a surprise visit to your prospect's home and show them the compensation plan...
e) Convince the prospect to join or buy the products
I could go on and on, but surely you get the point. In the IAHBE, I came across an article by Tom “Big Al” Schreiter about prospecting, and it changed my life forever. Here's what the article said:
"Professionals sort, amateurs convince"
I wish words could express how that simple sentence changed my idea of prospecting forever...
The point is this: You can never rely on a single source of information. The IAHBE has so many good and qualified authors, every one of them a success in their own rights. Finally, I found a place where I can get so much high quality information, compare them, and decide for myself which ideas I want to follow.
If you’ve decided to climb the home business ladder to success, and you want to REALLY make sure that it’s not leaning against the wrong wall, you’ll need guidance from people who have "been there and done that" before you start your journey.
2) Running Around in Circles
Before I joined the IAHBE, I was scouting around the Internet for free home business tips and ideas. I found many, but the problem was that I now had to ask myself:
- Which Internet "guru" you should I listen to?
- What should I invest in?
- Which resources will help me achieve profitability and which ones won't?
- What steps should I take to get where I want without busting my budget?
As I sat around cracking my head with these questions, I realized another undeniable factor to home business success, TIME! The fact is that there are only so many hours in a day, and why was I wasting time trying to wade through the sea of information called the Internet?
Information on the Internet, I learned, can never be fully trusted, especially if it's FREE. There are so many "Fake Experts" out there pitching ideas they have not tried themselves, which can lead the new guy astray.
With the IAHBE on the other hand, I can be assured that I am getting only top quality information. All writers are screened and evaluated before their material is accepted by the IAHBE. You don't get the fake ones here, and that's a real relief.
3) Keeping My Home Business Costs under Control
As a budding home business entrepreneur, my survival depended on how well I controlled my meager finances and small capital. And yet, every business owner knows the costs associated when starting your business. For example, I had to spend on:
a) My personal growth - books, eBooks, reports
b) Advertising - ezine ads, PPC, leads and print media ads
c) Operations - PC software, productivity tools
I had, at that time, spent close to $3000 just getting started. Most that was spent on useless website traffic schemes, so called "targeted" home business leads, books, software and PPC advertising. But in my second month as a member of the IAHBE, I realized that I actually have hundreds of unused coupons, discounts and special offers for the same products and services that I paid the full price for elsewhere. How can they do this?
It's a question of simple economics. What you cannot achieve as an individual, you can easily achieve as a group. Since the IAHBE has thousands of members, they can easily negotiate for special bulk discounts, free trials, and even free gifts from various suppliers, manufacturers and retailers.
4) A Simple Choice I had to Make
Many of my down line affiliates ask; is the IAHBE suitable for me? To this question I always ask them back:
"Do you want to spend time finding information, or do you want to spend time building a business?"
The reason is this; if you're content in running around chasing information, instead of actually building a business, you don't need the IAHBE. If you want to learn only from truly successful people, and get the information delivered to your doorstep, there is no smarter choice. After all, it only costs you around a dollar a day. Heck, even useless 'lifestyle' magazines cost more :)
5) The Journey Makes a Full Circle
The only apparent weakness of the IAHBE was that it did not provide information specific to Malaysia, where I live and run my Internet business. Sure, the articles and tips were great, but when I needed information that applies to me as a Malaysian, I dreaded the thought of going back to the world of offline information retrieval.
In an email, I told them that they should be more "International" as their name suggests. To my honest surprise, three months down the road, they did indeed become truly "International". And they were looking for writers to complement their search for information on Asia, especially in home business hotspots like India, Malaysia, Singapore, China, Japan and the Philippines.
Good things happen to those who persist. Not only did I get what I want, I was also appointed as a writer for topics related to Asia. Now I had to give back, and I could not be happier doing so.
So even if you are based in far corners of Asia, the International Association of Home Business Entrepreneurs could be the smartest choice you make this year to help you improve as an entrepreneur, as a marketer, and as a human being.
Take it form a guy who learned the hard way. Take it from a guy who is a member, writer and 100% believer in the IAHBE, and how it can change your life. You can get more info at http://www.home-business-association.com/IAHBE/
Seek only the truth, for the truth shall set you free. In the story of my life as an entrepreneur, it did indeed.