The power of promotion


With everyone looking for their own personal bailout program from the U.S. government, pharmacist Danny Cottrell decided to take matters into his own hands, creating a local stimulus package that would involve his employees – and benefit local businesses in the area. He handed out bonuses to his employees, $16,000 in total. He only gave two conditions for spending the money. Contribute about 15 percent to a local charity like a food shelf and then spend the rest locally. To track the results, he distributed the $16,000 in two dollar bills – all 8,000 of them. His hope was to show that communities can work together in tough times. By providing this bonus to his employees, it allowed them to contribute to the local economy and buy items that they needed. One employee needed two twin mattresses. He priced them out locally and ended up finding two stores that had good prices. So he bought one mattress at each store to spread the wealth. Some employees even purchased items in the pharmacy where they work; Cottrell is actually seeing some of those two dollar bills walk back through his door so to speak. The story, which aired on NPR’s Day to Day, was a simple one, but it shows the power of working together in tough times. How can you be resourceful with your existing customers, vendors, and employees so that you all benefit? Whom can you partner with? In a sense, Cottrell’s idea is similar to paying it forward. Do something nice for someone else and ultimately it will benefit everyone.

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