Devote Yourself to creating something that gives you purpose . . .

"So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they're busy doing things they think are important. This is because they're chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning."

Tuesdays with Morrie, author Mitch Albom

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Bartering - Have You Considered Exchanging Resources?

When economic times are tough, creative women may find the use of bartering as an opportunity to exchange products or services within their field of expertise to fulfill a business need.

Bartering by definition is to trade goods or services without the exchange of money. For a brief history of this topic bartering originated between 9000 - 6000 B.C. and livestock was often the unit of exchange (History of Money ) Today we wouldn't exchange an ox for products or services, but we may exchange handmade tote bags for professional photography of our products to help them sell on the Internet.

When exchanging products for services, be sure to include all associated costs, not just time for time. For example, I recently made an exchange of hand-sewn products which took approximately 22 hours to complete and $150 of material for a service which requires little to no material content. It was easy to exchange the hours for hours, but it was necessary to also convert the material cost into hours to make an even exchange. As a result of thinking outside the box, both sides of the equation became equal factors in this business exchange.

One thing to consider when bartering is what the IRS has to say about the exchange. I've included a link to this topic on their website here. It is necessary to consider bartered services on your business financial statements. Use the fair market value for products or services when considering the value of the exchange.

There are numerous bartering websites on the Internet, to find some just Google the topic. For an article of How Bartering Works, click this link.

We might want to consider adding a classified section to this blog to help us exchange products for products, products for services, or services for services. It might be useful to consider that one person's time is not any more valuable than the others even if you have different hourly rates.

Your comments would be useful in determining how we might want to accomplish this. Are there any suggestions or any interest in bartering?

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