If you’re not earning enough money, or working way too much, or simply feeling that your rates don’t reflect how valuable you are, then it’s probably time to raise your rates or ask for a raise. This article will help you work through doing just that, and feeling aligned and in integrity while doing it.
Are You In the Time-Money Pickle?
I know what it’s like to feel that you have to work more and more and more because you’re not charging what your time is worth or not getting the salary you deserve. It’s exhausting and makes you feel trapped in your schedule.
You can even sometimes resent your coworkers or clients or boss because you feel like you are working too hard and not receiving what you deserve in return. You feel less valued by others and frustrated by your bank account.
It must stop.
You’re worth so much more. You and your work are so valuable. It must stop because customers will likely not take you or your service or your product as seriously if you aren’t charging what you’re worth. Prospects will overlook you if your rates are too low. They assume that you’re not valuable if you’re not charging enough. Even if you don’t feel comfortable at first, it’s so important that you stand up for yourself and your value.
Please don’t give away your time for free or for rates that undervalue you!
By giving away your time, you’ll need to take on many, many clients just to make ends meet. And there are other ramifications: if clients aren’t financially investing what the time is worth, they aren’t fully valuing what you’re giving them.
Here’s what I want for you: to be able to feel good about what you charge and what you make. I want you to feel valued. And valuable. And worthy.
How to Start Raising Your Rates
First, assess for yourself if your rates or salary are aligned and in integrity for you. Are you receiving what you deserve for the time you put in? Here are some ways to know that your rates are out of integrity:
- You feel annoyed, angry, or taken for granted
- You’re often scrambling to take on more clients, sell more products, or do more overtime because you’re not making enough
- You wonder if you’re not charging enough
Once you realize that you’re undercharging, get clear now on how this is affecting you:
What’s the result in your work or life for undercharging or not receiving what you want?
It’s so important for you to understand how this affects you because this will be a big part of your motivation for it to change.
Why does it often feel so hard to charge what you’re worth? I’ve worked with literally hundreds of women on this topic, and here are some of the most common fears associated with raising rates:
- You fear you’ll be rejected or unloved
- You fear that others will become angry
- You fear that you’re not good enough or that your work isn’t valuable enough
The fears can be really strong. If you’re not in the right place energetically, even if you "raise your rates", you will still have trouble finding people to pay those rates or buy your books or hire you, etc. The sooner you address these fears and begin to believe in yourself and your work, the sooner you’ll start feeling valuable, valued, and worthy.
Get Clear on Your Sacred Message
Here’s what I’ve come to learn:
The number one root cause of fear in raising your rates is that you do not have enough confidence in yourself and in your sacred message.
So, what is your sacred message? Why is it so important when it comes to charging what you’re worth?
Your sacred message, at its deepest level, is the reason you do what you do. It’s the very important and profound message you want the world to receive via your work. Your sacred message is inclusive of how you are uniquely able and qualified to communicate that message.
The first part of your sacred message is about your vision for the world:
- What do you want for the healing of the world? If there was one thing that you felt so passionately about that you wished it so that the world could heal, what would that be? What is it that you believe in that you wish for the healing of the world?
- If there was something that you felt so passionately about that if you had the opportunity to shout from the rooftops or hilltops so that thousands and millions of people could hear you, what is it? Maybe one phrase or one sentence, what would that be?
The second part of your sacred message is how you uniquely bring that vision to the world:
- What do you really love to do? What are the things you know you are just great at doing?
- What would you want to overhear about yourself and your characteristics at a party? If you were a fly on the wall, what would delight you if you heard other people saying it about you?
You have a sacred message whether your work is a product, a service, or even if you’re in the midst of changing careers. If you have fears around raising your rates, your first step is to get very clear on your sacred message to help build your confidence and passion about your work and its value.
How To Set Your Rates
Here are some tips to consider when setting your rates:
- Do not set your rates based on what others are charging. Just because a colleague is charging "a lot more" or "a lot less" doesn’t mean you have to. The market doesn’t determine your value. YOU determine your value.
- Take into account all the costs to you: the marketing, the packaging, overhead, the other resources, and of course, your time.
- Don’t just double what you’re charging – this is not a conscious or aligned way of determining how to charge.
- Get clarity on knowing how to charge by using this rule of thumb: when you set your rates, you want to feel a little bit uncomfortable. You want to feel as though you’re stretching just a little with these new rates. Not so much you’d rather die than charge that amount of money! This should be healthy growth.
- It’s ok to raise your rates in stages. If it feels way too scary to raise your rates a lot all at once, you can stagger the increase over time. Sometimes growth happens in quantum leaps and sometimes it happens over a series of steps.
How to Tell Clients You’re Raising Rates
It might feel uncomfortable to go to current clients and tell them that you’re raising your rates. So, you need to use the energy of your sacred message and use that in those conversations. Depending on who you are, who your clients are or boss is, usually a person-to-person conversation is best, but sometimes an email is ok. Several important points to include are:
- You’re upleveling. You have made some really important shifts in yourself, your work, or your business, and you are upleveling. This is exciting!
- This is to their benefit. The reason this upleveling is so important and exciting is that it will 100% benefit them. This shift is to their advantage, so tell them how. Perhaps you want to say that you’ll be focusing on quality rather than quantity of clients, so you can bring more focus and attention to current clients. Having more time will allow you to bring more energy and presence to your work. You are modeling for them what it means to be a woman who really values herself.
- Upleveling means higher rates. Explain what the upleveling means and how you’ll be raising your rates. I like to offer current clients a courtesy discount off the new rates, so the rate is raised a bit but not as much as with a new client. This may not be for you, but for me it’s important to honor the existing client relationship. Always include your sacred message in your conversation.
- Even when I raise my rates, I like to honor my continuing clients by giving them a discount. I let them know that as a way of honoring the work we’ve already done together, they are receiving a discount from me.
Remember, what’s most important is to believe in your sacred message & yourself. Never forget how valuable your time is. When you raise your rates, it’s not just about believing in your value. It’s also about believing in the value of your prospect, and about believing that they can invest in themselves and receive so much – that they are worth making this investment in you. Once you’ve done all this homework and set your new rates, let me know how the process went. I’d love to hear from you!