Meet Our Members: Michael Sears of Michael Sears Web Design

Tell us about your business and your background.
My business started as a co-op job opportunity in late 2008. I started with a company designing a new Website for their business. When I started I had little knowledge of web coding and design and knew that it would be a great learning experience for me. I soon taught myself everything I know about design and coding and soon became interested in designing other sites for other companies. It was soon after I finished up the major portion of their Website where I wanted to gain more clients and learn more about Web design. I have always wanted to do something creative, but just couldn’t find the right niche until I started designing Web sites. I really enjoy what I do and I believe that is the most important thing in life is to enjoy what you have and do for a living rather than just settling for something. I recently graduated from Rowan Cabarrus Community College with a Computer Information Technology Associates Degree and am now concentrating on receiving my Web Technologies degree.

How did you hear about GBC?
I was recommended by a friend of mine to GBC. He was really enthused about the business and how much you can make and what great opportunities it would be to expand my business; and he wasn’t kidding. It has been great for me.

Why did you decide to become a GBC member?
I decided to become a GBC member because the benefits of barter exchange are great and with the economy down it gives small business owners a way to stay afloat and receive more business through other means such as trading. This was a great opportunity for me to do more work and get my business established and also establish a network of connections.

Had you used business barter before joining GBC?
No, I haven’t used barter for business before. Although I was offered it, I just couldn’t use the service that they were offering at the time and had to pass it up. But GBC makes the barter exchange so much easier and less complex!
Did you have any concerns before joining GBC? How were your concerns addressed?
I really didn’t have any concerns before I joined it was pretty straightforward and seemed like a really good deal.

What is the benefit of GBC membership that has been most valuable?
The benefit I get from GBC is the work, I have been so busy lately with work through GBC that it will lead later on to cash customers. The benefits are great and GBC has done a great job in getting everything organized.

What services do you barter?
The services that I barter are Web design and Web development.

What services have you bartered for?
I haven’t done any bartering for service yet, I am still working on a few things and trying to narrow down what I want to use it for.

Do you have any advice for other professionals considering a GBC membership?
Advice I would give to any professional that is interested is that I wouldn’t look twice about it; this is a great deal to get you more business and possibly more opportunities for creating a wider network of contacts. Your broker will help you find work and will recommend your work to others when needed. Don’t stick to the same ole situation of exchanging a currency, just exchange your work for other work.