The last few weeks I have been working with fellow members (with expertise in finance, project management and training) to determine the most effective ways to develop our community. Until now, my focus has been mainly on gathering members of quality and integrity. Through the simple process of natural selection, the unethical and non-responsive have been removed (thanks to your feedback and patience), resulting in ever strengthening trust and loyalty between members.
Restricted by time, I have 'followed the action', focussed my energies on the members who are active and responsive, discovering the best ways to stimulate and activate collectives and individuals. The following 3 initiatives will help balance our currency, introduce fellow members to help organise 'on the ground', and start to realise the creative potential of cash free trade.
1) Opposites Attract We will be introducing members with a positive '+' trade balance with those currently with a negative '-" balance; where there is a demand, we will look for a suitable supplier if available. A positive account is not earning you any interest and should be used intelligently and creatively. A negative account means your buying power is restricted, we will work with you to find new customers and help create interest with your participation and pro-activity.
2) Introducing Trade Consultants Currently we are developing a training manual that will be used by select members to interview and educate prospective new members. It will educate on Smarter Barter's ethos, using a questionnaire find out what suppliers they need and what they can offer in return. Successful prospects will be charged a Full Trade amount of T$90 payable directly to the Consultant. This process will help filter those businesses we WANT to trade with, and getting them trading ASAP.
3) Collaborating to Profit Share I have been working with several small groups of members investigating how they can use trade to profit share in the cash market. This involves members on-selling services/ products of fellow members on a 50/ 50 basis to their cash customers; (i) On a product level, an simple example is Shanga Beauty Products selling on 50/50 at wholesale price to Smarter Barter retailers (beauty salons, health practitioners etc). Both members share in the cash profits of the sale to the cash market, Shanga cover raw material cash costs, and the 'on-seller' converts trade to cash in a controlled and continuous way. (ii) On a service level, collaboration becomes a really powerful tool using trade. The ability to offer the services of a trusted fellow member to your cash customers has the benefits of expanding your client base, portfolio, expertise,market share and profitability. Using the same pricing as in (i), each participant offers their service to the 'on-seller' on a 50/ 50 'wholesale' price of 75% RRP; both parties profit share from the sale and strengthen trust. Last year saw nearly T$800, 000 in transactions between members, the majority between the top 20% of traders who averaged T$10, 000 each. It sounds a lot, but we've only just started.
We have untapped potential as a group to use our currency creatively and fairly for the benefit of all. Please contact Rob if you have any questions or feedback, every initiative is only possible because of shared knowledge, understanding and transparency...oh, and all are 100% cash free and organic!