C.O.D.D……Let’s go fishing

Title: A Structure for your recruiting chats that actually works

Have you ever heard of C.O.D.D? It’s a technique to use in your direct sales or party plan business to fish for potential new team members.

And luckily it doesn’t actually involve any cod fish.

I feel I should start with a confession: In my first two years as a direct salesperson I did not recruit a single new team member.

Not a single one.

Things changed after my first convention and learning about C.O.D.D. Learning to use  this technique helped me to grow into an international record holder within my company for sponsoring the most people in a single month.

C.O.D.D. stands for Compliment, Objective, Disclaimer, Date.

You can use this structure to casually arrange for a coffee catch-up with potential new team members or to sign someone up on the spot.

So let me walk you through it.

How to use the C.O.D.D structure in your direct sales biz


You start the conversation with a compliment. It’s important that the compliment is genuine because people can smell a fake from a mile away. Also, you need to make the compliment fit the person. You can’t say the same tired line to everybody because people will talk to each other or may overhear your conversation where you say the same thing to everybody. Learn to see the good in people and compliment them on it.

At parties or direct sales events, I look for people who would make great team members and I tell them why. I say something like: “You’d make a fabulous consultant because…

  • You were so passionate about our products. Everyone listened when you told them about your favorites!
  • You are so warm and friendly. I think you managed to catch up with everybody at this party! You’re obviously a fabulous people person.
  • You are the life of the party!


After your genuine compliment, you move straight to the objective before they even have a chance to respond to your compliment. Your objective could be to get them to take a recruitment information pack home or encouraging them to buy the business kit on the spot. I usually say something like: “I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about it before, but…

  • I’d love you to take home this information and have a read of it.
  • The business kit is such amazing value so you’ve got nothing to lose by giving it a try.


Use this easy structure to make those recruiting chats easy and fun.

The disclaimer is meant to put them at ease. You keep it casual and ensure they won’t feel like you’re putting the “hard sell” on them. Which you are not. I usually say something like

Don’t worry, if it’s not for you I promise I won’t stalk you, but there’s no harm in finding out about it. If it’s not for you, you might actually know someone that it would be perfect for.

Quick note: if your objective is to sign them up on the spot, you skip the disclaimer and go straight to the sign-up phase. You can say something like “Let’s go ahead and order you the kit. It’ll feel like Christmas when it arrives!” Then you move to set a date.


In this phase you’re trying to set a date to meet them again. You can ask: “When is best for you to catch up for a chat about it and I can answer any questions you might have?” or something similar. When you’re trying to sign someone up on the spot you can ask something like “What’s best for you to have a gathering to let your friends and family know. A weekend or weeknight?”. Have your diary ready and try to get a firm appointment.

Let the passion for your direct sales biz shine through

The key to this process is to realize it’s a structure for effective conversations, not a script.

To make it work, you have to make it fit your personality and style. You have to find something real to compliment someone on, and you have to have real passion for your business. Authenticity and passion will always shine through and by using techniques like C.O.D.D. you can become more effective.

Authenticity and passion will always shine through….

To become fluent in using C.O.D.D., it helps to role-play it a few times. Perhaps you can practice with a friend, business buddy or family member before your next party or event so the conversation is smooth and natural. Once you’re confident you’ll see that your sponsoring chats become a lot more effective.

Now, go fish!

Recruiting or sponsoring is a skill that you can learn, it’s not something you are born with. If you want to improve your recruiting skills to build your business, check out the Recruiting Masterclass. It’s jam-packed with ideas, strategies and tips to help you become a superstar recruiter in your own direct sales biz.

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