Why you should pay your friends!
Ok I'm serious about this, (to a point) and it's all to do with the 'karmic flow of money'!
A yoga instructor friend of mine recently asked me if I would be joining her 'Yoga By The Beach' class and told me; "come on down, it's on me". She was a little surprised when I said I'd join in but I only if she'd let me pay. "If I don't pay you it'll mean you're paying me to join your class!"
And so I explained why I thought friends with small businesses should look after each other's interests as well as their own. Everybody wants something for free and many people 'expect' free services of their friends, but how does that help the friend and their business? Most of us have lots of friends and when we start off in business we quickly make more friends and acquaintances through networking. Naturally we want to show off our products or services and we want people to like what we do and spread the good word, but we wouldn't last long if we gave everyone we know a 'freebie'.
If you have a product worth $50 and I give you $50 for it, I have $50 less and a new product, and you have one less product but $50 more - and that's the way it should be for your business to survive. If you give me that product for free, you have one product less and you miss out on $50. So in effect, you are paying me to take your product. And just because a service isn't necessarily a physical thing, the practice still works just the same! After all, if I don't pay you, how are you going to be able to pay it forward, and how will it ever come back to me?
I'm not saying you shouldn't accept a discount or some kind of referral fee; in fact if you bring them more business then a referral fee is a perfect example of the karmic flow of money. This very practice when accepted as fair and proper will help to create a ripple effect that will eventually come back to us and we'll all benefit.
So next time a friend who may be struggling with a small business offers you something for nothing, consider yourself a real friend and think twice before accepting it...