Tweamster's Blog

I Can’t Do That, I’m Scared | June 28, 2010

A Survey

A couple of years ago, I read a report of a survey done by Len Clements in 1991 by Market Wave, his marketing research firm. While brainstorming for an idea about home businesses for this post, I ran across a note I had made at the time suggesting to myself that I make a website out of the results of this survey.

The survey was done on over 6,000 people who were not at that time business owners, and had never been business owners. The question asked was “If all obstacles were removed, would you like to own your own business?”

An astonishing 85% said yes, they would prefer to work for themselves. I say astonishing only because getting 85% of any diverse group to agree on something this wholeheartedly must mean there’s something to it.

Another way of looking at it, as Mr. Clements himself says, the other 15% must have misunderstood the question, or why wouldn’t they prefer to work for themselves.


This almost makes me want to go out there tonight and start applying the 3 foot rule. (In case you don’t know, the 3 foot rule means you prospect or try to recruit anyone within 3 feet of you.)

If 85% of the people want to work for themselves, let’s get to it. How can we possibly fail? Just start talking to people, right? How hard can that be?

Hold On A Minute There, Buckwheat

If you’ve tried the 3 foot rule, you know as well as I do that you don’t get 85% of the people within 3 feet of you interested in your opportunity. In fact, I felt lucky if I got one in 100 to express any interest. Hmmm, there must be something else at work here.

Now granted, there can be things you’re doing that are driving prospects away, such as being needy, having a lousy presentation, poor sales skills, etc., etc.

However, after seeing that 85% figure, Mr. Clements got interested in what kept people from starting a business if they wanted one. If that many people want to have their own business, but don’t, there must be some pretty compelling reasons preventing them from starting.

So, he did further research.

Things That Go Bump In The Night

After further inquiry, it was discovered that people had some basic fears about starting their own business. And the same four fears came up over and over and over. Not everyone had all four, but everyone had one or more of these four.

1)    It takes too much money

2)    It takes too much time

3)    There’s too much risk

4)    I don’t know how

Those were the four fears that kept those 85% from following their preference for owning their own business and working for themselves.

What’s Holding You Back

If you’re here reading this blog, you’ve overcome at least some of your fears of starting your own business. Aside from mlm or network marketing, do you know of any other business model that 1) has low start-up cost, 2) gives you the ability to start part-time or spare-time while you get it started and profitable, 3) has low risk, and 4) teaches you how to do it?

If you are thinking about starting your own business or are looking for your dream business, sign up for the free 7 Days – 7 Insider Secrets newsletter and learn how to find a company that maximizes your chances at success.


I wholeheartedly urge you to read the entire article that I’ve excerpted here. It’s (c)2008 by Len Clements.


A group of professional people posed this question to a group of 4 to 8 year-olds, ‘What does love mean?’

‘Love is what makes you smile when you’re tired…’   Terri – age 4

‘Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.’   Danny – age 7

‘Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss’   Emily – age 8

‘Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen.’   Bobby – age 7

‘During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.’   Cindy – age 8

‘My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don’t see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.’   Clare – age 6

‘Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.’   Chris – age 7

‘Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.’
Mary Ann – age 4

‘You really shouldn’t say ‘I love you’ unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget.’   Jessica – age 8



  1. Very interesting, 85% you say? I find it interesting that all four reasons are things that you can fix if you really wanted to start your own business. Will definitely have to read the whole article.


    Comment by Kevin E Snow — June 29, 2010 @ 8:56 pm

    • Yes, they are. Some people just aren’t yet up to the level of doing something about it.

      Thanks for commenting. Much appreciated.


      Comment by tweamster — June 29, 2010 @ 10:15 pm

  2. Very illuminating and encouraging! I enjoy your blogs because they’re so humorous and so straight from the hip.

    Comment by Carrie — July 3, 2010 @ 2:47 pm

  3. […] Marketing by raina4money — Leave a comment July 9, 2010 I was just reading an entry in  Alan’s blog that talks about why most prospects say no.  According to an article that he sites, 85% of people […]

    Pingback by Network Marketing Challenge – Day 11 (Scared Prospects) « Raina's Network Marketing Challenge — July 8, 2010 @ 6:04 pm

  4. You are right, Alan, is not that people don’t want to star a business but they are not up to do something about it. Your post encourages me to keep going, there are still many people to help!. Loved the kid’s answers!

    Comment by Angelica — July 10, 2010 @ 5:25 pm

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