Imagine, then, if in just one hour you could match hundreds of detailed offers and needs within a group of people, even if the group were all strangers. What if such an opportunity not only stimulated meaningful connections but had the potential to re-localise your economy and reduce your ecological footprint, all through a fun activity?
Well, it certainly is possible! Below is a 10 step guide to running an ‘offers and needs market’. It’s a process I’ve successfully run with groups as small as three and as big as 100.
The offers and needs market method is far from unique; in fact it’s just a variation on the traditional marketplace! It draws on my experience with gift circles, abundance swaps, the Local Exchange Trading System, as well as asset-based thinking (and can be done as a follow-up to group asset-mapping). Where the offers and needs market is unorthodox is in its use of silence as an important means to encourage participation from people with introverted tendencies, its rapid-fire exchange process, and its use of a particular set of descriptors to classify each offer and need.
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