“Ask Russ” May 2022 by Russ DeVan

Russ DeVan

I feel “lost” without a script. What are some of the best things I can say that will create a conversation conducive to exploring prospects? 

R. Porter – Minneapolis, MN

One way to look at the solution here is to ask yourself: “What would somebody I would want as a prospect be listening for?”

The more you can be interested in who someone is and less interested in getting the right question out, the better off you are. Here are some of my “go-to” questions and responses. Don’t worry. You’ll always know exactly when to say them: 

Tell me about you…?

Could you please say more about that?

What is your opinion of…..? 

The original prospectors were looking for gold and the signs that would lead them to it.

The big difference here is we are listening for the “gold.” Start digging!


I feel uncomfortable with public speaking, selling, and recruiting. Can I still have success with network marketing and what do I do about my fears? 

Natalie Bowles – Altoona, PA 

One of the most memorable lines ever spoken on not letting irrational fears control our lives and outcomes came from our 32nd President, Franklin Delano Roosevelt:

“We have nothing to fear, but fear itself!”

Fear is a thief. It steals enthusiasm, authenticity, and confidence, and replaces them with doubt and insecurity. Fear keeps us from being present and making a contribution. It’s also a ghost. It’s not real. Fear is as phony and weak as the boogeyman, once we realize he’s not “true.”

Years ago, doing a public presentation of a memorized script, I forgot my lines. After a few attempts to restart by repeating the last sentence, I panicked. I fled the stage. Fortunately, one of my coaches and mentors stopped me halfway down the aisle. He whispered in my ear: “They don’t KNOW that it’s a script! Just make something up!” I went back up and stared out at the blank faces of the audience. I blurted out apologetically:

“I forgot the script!”

Everyone laughed…including me. Then, the strangest thing happened. I remembered the script and completed it, flawlessly. So here’s my advice. The way to confront and make fear disappear is to notice it. Speak it. “OUT” it!

Say to a prospect that you have an agenda, instead of hiding it.

Let them know you want to tell them something but you are concerned about what they might think. Tell an audience you forgot where you were. If you do this, you will find, as I did, that fear is our own construct and when we acknowledge it to others, we get what we seek the most; empathy, appreciation, and of course, forgiveness.


Think And Grow Rich seems to be the most famous book in network marketing personal development circles. What other books would you recommend, Russ, that rank among the very best in terms of their impact on you, personally? 

Gordon Jones – Roanoke, VA

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Russ DeVan
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