Over the years, I have encountered many IBOs and they often have a common theme. They trust their upline and in some cases, consider them mentors. Some IBOs go so far as to trust their new mentors over trusted friends and family. (This is also the insidious part of this whole scheme) Now in a business venture, it might be good to have a mentor or someone to guide you, but in the Amway opportunity, most of the upline mentors make money off those who they mentor. That is a major conflict of interest but IBOs simply fail to see it.
When an IBO sees the plan in a big meeting, the speaker will often be built up as a financial genious, and possibly as an expert on how to succeed in Amway. An IBO may hear something about the trail was already blazed by upline and you just need to follow the trail. Don't re-invent the wheel, just duplicate what upline has done. But as I have said many times before, duplication sounds easy and looks good on paper, but in real life, the vast majority of IBOs run into problems that they simply cannot overcome, such as the bad reputation that the Amway name has in the US, or trying to justify the ridiculous prices of some Amway products.
What is troubling however, is that IBOs are taught to trust upline and do as they say (defacto requirement), but they are also taught that failure is their own shortcoming, even when they do exactly what upline told them. It is also troubling that many uplines will tell their faithful followers that they need to purchase more and more tools (voicemail, cds, seminar tickets). In some cases, an upline may advise their downline to sacrifice basic family needs to buy these tools. Some IBOs were advised to skip meals to buy a cd, or skip paying the mortgage to be able to attend the next big function. I personally witnessed IBOs in my crossline who followed upline advice to their own demise (home foreclosure and bankruptcy). Sure, IBOs are culpable too, but the upline had the gall to give that kind of advice.
I might also add that as a newer IBO or prospect, you may have heard that "everyone starts at zero", or that it's a level playing field. It is not. As a new IBO, you will likely be in the 100 PV bracket. Since Amway pays out about 31% in bonuses, your upline(s) will split up about 28% in bonuses off your efforts while you get a 3%bonus. That doesn't sound very level to me. You also do not make any money from the tools. That is reserved exclusively for higher level pins.
So each IBO should look at things objectively and see if your upline is helping you or simply helping himself by giving you advice that ends up in profit for himself with little or nothing for you. You might be surprised to know the answer.