Michele Riffe on Moving Your Firm in the Right Direction
In month four, Michele talks about how having the confidence to be clear about the value of her services is helping her move her business in the direction she wants it to go.
To view her additional videos, please see follow these links to Follow Michele Riffe on her journey to value pricing, Month 2: Hourly price and Month 3: The Right Model.
Ron said to identify a minimum price. Meaning, anybody that wants to work with us, there's a minimum price to work with us. What that means is, if it's not a project or it doesn't meet my criteria for my monthly bookkeeping, it's okay to say no. He gave us permission, basically, to say no. I have a different level of confidence in that now.
He has what he calls, "A satisfaction days." He calls it the HSD. I've had a few of those since coming back from the summit. My customers that are my maintenance-type customer, that only call me when they have new projects. I've literally doubled my rates with them. I haven't experienced any push back on that. I have developed a letter for all of my existing bookkeeping clients. In the process of presenting that letter, explaining my new business model. That I'm going away from tracking time cards and not going to track tasks anymore. Again, I haven't gotten any push back on that yet either. Actually, one guy just emailed me back and said, "No problem." I thought, all right.
Currently, I'm working with a client that I have on a fixed price agreement. Working with Ron has given me the courage to stand my grand, because this project is starting the introduce a lot of scope creep. There's things that we didn't define in the original agreement. I've followed Ron's instructions. I'm going to develop and send them a change order request. We are either going to increase the monthly fee for the balance of the current fixed price agreement or we're going to add on a couple 3, maybe 4 more months to the existing agreement. I'm not giving away my services for free anymore.
Every new customer will come in under the value price model. Ultimately, my goal is that every existing customer will also be under the value pricing model. As a solo-preneur the 2 biggest challenges I've always had have been keeping the customer pipeline full. Finding a balance between working on my business and in my business. Value pricing is working my business, but it's a lot of work. It's not easy. It's even stressful sometimes. Takes time. It's an ever changing, always learning, always improving process. It's this roller coaster and balancing act.
When I first started working with Ron, I think I can seriously say, I was really to find a new career. I was tired. I'm exhausted. I'm overworked. It felt like I was underpaid. I don't feel like that anymore. I feel more rejuvenated. I'm more excited about the business. I'm moving my business in the direction that I want it to go versus just kind of where it had been, based on the type of customers I was working with. I'm more actively seeking the types of customers that I want to work with. I think I'm also getting paid better, because of working with Ron.