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Business Unplugged™
This blog features Carol Roth's tough love on business and entrepreneurship, as well as insights from Carol's community of contributors.

Have You Considered a “Bartnership”?

Written By: Catherine Morgan | No Comments

Sometimes you need something done for your business and you just don’t have cash on hand to pay for it. In “Bartering May Ease Cash-Flow Crunch, But Follow These Rules,” Carol’s recent post on Bank of America’s Small Business Community, she shares some tips for how to choose a “bartner” and structure a bartering agreement. Carol begins:

It is often said that “money makes the world go ‘round.” This couldn’t be truer for entrepreneurs, who may find that money goes out the door at a more rapid pace than it enters the business.

Business owners often need to be entrepreneurial when it comes to operations, including finding ways to get creative with financing. While we always think of money as our only currency, many of us provide expertise, goods and services with substantial value that can be bartered to grow your business.

Done correctly, you can use barter-based partnerships (let’s call them “bartnerships”) to take care of some business needs while building great collaborative relationships in the process.

However, like anything else, where you fail to prepare, you prepare to fail. And, in the case of bartering, that means anything from incurring hefty legal costs to unexpected tax bills.

Here’s a roadmap to help you barter and partner better so that it adds to your business.

Vet potential partners

When you go to partner on a barter deal, you want to ensure that your “bartner” has a positive reputation and shares your base business values.

One way to do this is to approach associates in your network where you already have a positive relationship. You can also seek recommendations from trusted business associates and advisors. If you expect to barter regularly, consider joining a barter group that verifies or rates participants, or even a barter exchange that intervenes in negotiations.

Whether you know your bartner or not, do an online search and check reviews, their social media postings and Better Business Bureau complaints to see if there is any history that could create an issue for the relationship and your business’s reputation.

Establish a fair exchange

Even in barter arrangements, the dollar remains the core standard of value. Both parties need to set and agree to a firm dollar value for the goods and services they’re exchanging to create a benchmark of “fairness” for the transaction.

You can read the rest of the post here.

Article written by
Catherine Morgan is the editor of Business Unplugged ™, an engaging speaker, and the founder of Point A to Point B Transitions Inc., a virtual provider of coaching services to individuals who are in business or career transition. Catherine is the author of the eBook Re-Launch You: Discovering Your Point B and Embracing Possibility. An experienced independent consultant and former employee of three of the former Big Five consulting firms, Catherine combines strategy development with accountability coaching. Her productivity tips and career transition advice have been featured on WGN AM 720 and WIND AM 560 The Answer in Chicago, and on WCHE AM 1520 in the Philadelphia area. Catherine speaks frequently on topics related to productivity, career transition, small business, and entrepreneurship. She doesn’t take herself seriously, but takes her subject matter very seriously.