Lessons learned from The Paper Clip Challenge

I learned a lot from The Paper Clip Challenge.  If you’ve been following my blog, you already know what that is.  If not, you may need to read my post from earlier today.   Anyway, for those of you who are climbers and want to start your own business, whatever that is, these are some of the lessons I learned from the seemingly simple Paper Clip Challenge:

  1. In business, and especially in trade, “greater value” can have multiple meanings, including monetary, novelty, neccesity, and sentimental value.
  2. When you acquire two items in exchange for a single item, you must then decide whether to trade those two items separately, as a “package deal”, or as one main item with a “freebie” thrown in.
  3. Transparency with your customers fosters trust and loyalty, and is likely to get you a better trade.
  4. Some trades are best not made, especially if they are not mutually beneficial or are dishonest in nature.  It may also be a trust issue on the part of either party that makes the trade a toxic one.
  5. Sometimes the answer is, “No deal,” and that’s okay.  Find the need.
  6. Know what you want from a trade, or at least have an idea, because the person you are seeking to trade with may flat-out ask, “Well, what do you want?”  Don’t be caught off-guard if this happens!
  7. Know when to stop trading.  If you trade and receive something vital to your business, know when to stop trading!
  8. Know how to market your product.
  9. Trust the Lord.  Have faith that He will fill you with His Holy Spirit and lead you and guide you in all things.  If you have other beliefs or do not believe in a higher power, do not discount the faith aspect of this statement.  Have faith that it will work out.
  10. Don’t give up!  Don’t waste your talent by giving up!  Be creative!
  11. Know who to trade a particular item with.  Give some thought to where the need for what you have to offer might be, and to who might have something to trade for it.
  12. Develop a strategy for the trade interaction.  If you are confident (or can act and appear confident) about the trade, the interaction goes much more smoothly regardless of the outcome.  Help them want what you have to offer.
  13. Demonstrate what you are trading for them or allow them to try it out.  Hands-on is powerful.

So, hopefully you got something out of this for your business dealings.  Always be honest.  I know that sounds redundant and unnecessary, but it doesn’t always go without saying.  Honesty is always the best policy in all your dealings.  Now go think on that business you’ve always wanted!  Better yet, try The Paper Clip Challenge for yourself and see what happens!

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