Value. What are your services really worth? What do your clients get as a result of buying your products or working with you? The price you place on your products and services is really no more than what you think you are worth.
One woman I worked with charged $90 an hour for coaching; yet in reality, she worked three hours for every hour she billed. Another used to run a $500 million dollar business division. Now that she owned her own business she was concerned that she didn’t have enough experience to charge $200 an hour for her services. Another client shared with me that she had sold over a million dollars in $20 t-shirts, by speaking from the stage. She wondered why anyone would be interested in how she did it. She figured, if she could do it, it must be easy and everyone knew how.
We easily see the value in others. We also accept the valuation cap that others place on us.
When I left corporate America I declared that my goal was to replace my salary minus my commuting and babysitting expenses. I replaced my salary quickly, yet earning so much as a dime more than that took three years. Why? It was because I accepted Wall Street’s valuation cap of me as gospel and didn’t look inside myself to figure out what I was really worth.
There are many reasons entrepreneurs under-charge for their services. Some of the ones I hear about the most are:
They lack confidence and believe that they need another degree or certification before they can “do” whatever it is they do.
They under-value their own education and experience. For entrepreneurs who enter a “new field” their previous experience adds to who they are and what they can deliver. For entrepreneurs who have been working in their business for a while they often feel like they are one-step behind where they need to be before they can raise their rates.
We base our rates on what others are doing and not on what our clients get from working with us.
When you don’t understand your true value you cannot charge what you are worth. AND you are also likely to approach sales conversations with trepidation instead of confidence in your ability to deliver value to clients.
I believe there are 5-components to the VALUE you place on yourself and therefore the prices you charge your customers.
Your VISION: What you see for yourself, your business and your clients.
Your ACTIONS: What you do on a regular basis to support your vision. This includes the projects you choose to take on, the opportunities you pursue and what you decide not to do.
Your LEARNING: What you’ve already learned and continue to learn both formally and through your experience with clients and the world around you.
That you are UNIQUE: The experiences you’ve had both in and out of the workplace add to the person you are and your ability to provide your service.
That you are ENOUGH and have the right to say “ENOUGH”: You already have enough certifications and experience to help someone. You also have the right to say ENOUGH. To say no and set boundaries. You don’t have to work with everyone; you don’t have to say yes to every opportunity. You can say yes or no depending on whether or not they support your vision for yourself and your business.
The better able you are to recognize your V.A.L.U.E. the easier your business will be to run and the happier it will make you.
Answer the following two questions to help you to start assessing your own V.A.L.U.E.
Now take it deeper… ask yourself: So what does that give them?
How has this exercise increased your understanding of your VALUE? Please share.