Eight years ago, I wrote a piece about how financial guru Dave Ramsey sucks because he supports multi-level marketing. I was hoping that since then, things may have changed. They haven’t. Dave has even gone further with his support and promotion of MLMs as a legitimate way for people to make money. He ignores the fact that 99% of people lose money in MLM, and obviously thinks that the people who lose money just didn’t work hard enough.
In this recent article from Dave’s website, Ramsey Solutions, he wholeheartedly endorses MLM. You might think he’s going to be smart about this, given that he starts off sarcastically referring to it as the most incredible opportunity.
He’s bought the MLM talking point that they’re all about selling products. He’s also swallowed the “one bad apple” argument: “While a few bad apples can give the whole tree a bad rap, you shouldn’t be too quick to write them all off.”
When listing the pros to MLM, Dave mentions the ability to make money. Funny, he doesn’t mention that 99% of people who participate in multi-level marketing lose money. And you can work from home! Flexibility! Work when you want!
Yes, Dave (more properly his people writing the article and putting his name on it) have bought all of the nonsense talking points from the MLM-ers.
On the con side, they say it will cost you money up front, but this is just like any business. MLM is not a business. That’s the biggest problem here. Ramsey is treating MLM like it is a real business, but it is not.
He does point out that making money from recruiting is what makes these companies pyramid schemes. Ramsey also mentions: “If your MLM is promising you a six-figure paycheck in your first year, you may want to throw up the red flag.”I think they all promote this idea! If only you are willing to work hard, you can make unlimited income, you can make executive income with part time hours, you can be a six figure earner in a matter of months….
It’s interesting that the Ramsey organization can promote the idea of joining an MLM, even in light of this comment they make: “On top of that, your leaders and teammates will be encouraging you to buy more (and sell more), so it’s easy to spend your own hard-earned money in the name of “being a good teammate.””
Does that even sound like a business to you? Or does it sound more like a scam?
Dave does suggest if your reason for joining an MLM is supplemental income, that you should look elsewhere for a part-time job. But does that even make sense? Of course people who join MLM are looking to make money. So that means they should not join MLM? Then what would the purpose of joining an MLM be? Should people who do NOT want to make money join? (Well, I suppose they were inadvertently telling the truth since 99% of people lose money in MLM.)
Stay away from MLMs. And stay away from sketchy advice. Dave Ramsey has wonderful advice for people who want to get out of debt. But the multi-level marketing topic is one on which he has been failing for at least a decade.