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The weekly newsletter for everyone interested in barter--the world's most versatile business tool!

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February 22, 2000

In this week's report. . .

  • Reward and motivate your employees utilizing trade
  • New web site open for swappers and collectors
  • Virtual trading for commodities is now available
  • NATE convention to be held in Las Vegas
  • Here & there. . .

 

Use Barter (Trade Dollars) To Reward and Motivate Employees

Employee attitudes, rather than cash flow or process technology, most affect a company's competitiveness, says the Stanford Business School Magazine. The following techniques will get employees to devote their hearts and minds to your company:

Start, but don't end with a mission statement; keep your company's charter alive by reviewing it periodically with employees.

Develop your staff by training them continually about the changing workplace.

Give every employee at least two jobs, two areas of responsibility, and people will rise to meet your expectations.

Finally, involve everyone, not just managers, in planning for the future.

Greater Effort Through Barter-Garnered Perks

With budgets, it's not always possible to give top performers a monetary raise. But you can show them that you value their contributions by creating a variety of low-cost, high-impact rewards. Here are a few examples, and most can be covered by using trade dollars:

  • Invite the employee to lunch or dinner (or give them scrip for dinner-for-two) at one of the restaurants in your exchange.
  • Award him or her a one-month, six-month, or yearly fitness-club membership available through the exchange.
  • Provide a premium parking space for the employee.
  • Give flowers or a balloon bouquet ordered from a member of the exchange.
  • Make a contribution to his or her favorite charity...ideally a charity that accepts trade dollars.
  • Volunteer to do the employee's least desirable work task for a day.
  • Name a space after the employee...the Susan Smith Corridor, for example.
  • Give him or her a gift certificate (scrip) for a store or service that's a member of the exchange.
  • Send a thank-you letter or e-mail message to the deserving employee.
  • Arrange for a Bed & Breakfast stay through your trade exchange.
  • Publish an article about the employee in your company newsletter.

WebSwap.com Eyes Millions of Americans Who Are Core Collectors

A new web site, www.webswap.com, says its patent-pending "matching" technology automates and simplifies the otherwise complex process of matching two or more individuals' needs and wants.

According to CEO Jens Christensen, three out of four internet users have recently swapped items with a friend or family member off-line, which a survey by Greenfield Online, a leading internet-based market research company, confirms.

Swappers-to-be who visit WebSwap.com will list the items they "have" and the items they "want" free of charge. Webswap's patent-pending "matching engine" then identifies potential barter partners, notifying them of the match. Christensen says their unique technology increases the likelihood of matches by 1,000 percent.

Users can register on Webswap for free. When a trade is completed, the customers are charged a small fee (for the transaction) based on the value of the item. For items valued up to $10 the charge is 50-cents. Responsibility for exchanging the items are left up to the individuals.


Virtual Trading Floors For Commodities Established

Goldman, Sachs & Co. of New York estimates that agricultural business-to-business sales on the Internet will reach $123 billion in 2004. (That's 12% of all agriculture sales made in the United States.)

And now, following ten months of research and $3 million in funding, a new web site, agex.com, intends to systematically establish virtual trading floors...initially for a variety of nuts, dried fruits, juice concentrates, and then produce.

Agex.com, headquartered in Sacramento, works like this: Anyone globally can pay a $5,000 annual membership fee to post offers to buy or sell commodities, seven days a week, 24 hours a day.

Participants can negotiate with counteroffers, and members are able to flag others in the system or color-code offers. That way, everyone knows whether an offer on their computer screen is from someone they enjoy doing business with or, frankly, someone with whom they choose not to trade. Sellers are charged 0.5% of each transaction's value.


NATE Convention Slated for March 2-4 At The Monte Carlo In Las Vegas

The National Association of Trade Exchanges is expecting an overflow attendance at this year's annual convention in Las Vegas. Over the years that city has proven to be the biggest draw for their attendees.

This year the organization is providing companies attending with a FREE video of the various business sessions. The offer is the first-ever within the commercial barter industry.

Other noteworthy events will include the "roasting" of outgoing NATE Executive Director Tom McDowell (one of the founders) and the introduction of his replacement, Alan Zimmelman.

The beautiful Monte Carlo hotel and casino will be the site of the convention. For further details contact Alan Zimmelman at (760) 944-7399, or fax (760) 944-7998.


Here & There. . .

  • NBC is investing $150 million of television and online advertising on NBC and CNBC.com and NBCi (plus another $50 million in order-fulfillment, distribution and customer service through ValueVision, 40% owned by NBC), in a new internet company, Ralph Lauren Media.

    Ralph Lauren Corp (RLC) and NBC will introduce the famed Ralph Lauren Polo brand on the Internet via www.Polo.com.

    RLC won't be investing directly in the new Internet company (Ralph Lauren Media), although they will be mentioning the new site in their own print ads which approximate $100 million annually. Even though RLC won't own any of the new company, it will earn royalties of 10% to 15% on all sales made through the site...once sales have reached $75 million. Now that's a trade made on one's name!

  • BarterTrust.com has secured an alliance with Magnifi Inc., a company that provides business-to-business marketing applications and services for global 2000 companies, advertising agencies, and marketing partners. Magnifi's hosted service, magnifi.net is partnering with BarterTrust, a San Francisco-based electronic barter network for companies and trade exchanges.

  • BarterNews publisher Bob Meyer is now attending the International Reciprocal Trade Association's Australian 2000 Conference, held at the luxurious 5-Star Kooralbyn Hotel Resort in the beautiful countryside of SE Queensland.

    Meyer is scheduled to speak February 24, for 90 minutes, on the future of the commercial barter industry in the new economy. The four-day event has attracted attendees from around the world and will equal in attendance, IRTA's Annual Convention. Quite an accomplishment for IRTA-Australasia.

 



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