How Valuable Are You?
Your fee says a great deal about you.
Like it or not, people use money as a criteria for passing judgment on everything from homes, to cars to people.
When you develop a fee for providing value to your clients, you (and they) typically view that fee as a reflection upon you.
And you leave them no choice.
When you charge for work completed, or time you spend, it’s hard for people to grasp the value you provide.
Think about that for a moment.
How much is reviewing a contract worth?
How much is a conversation with opposing counsel worth?
In that context, most people would view the value you place on your time as unacceptable (even arrogant).
But if you set the value of your services in the world of the client, if you help him see how you can provide value to him, your fee is almost irrelevant.
So instead of an hour reviewing a contract, you provide the client with a title to a home free of liens and encumbrances.
You replace the conversation with opposing counsel with a purchase agreement for a business that will deliver $2 million per year in new revenue.
When you adjust the lens through which you view your work, you immediately change the dynamic of the relationship. You are no longer viewed as someone punching a time clock. You are viewed as a valuable confidant.
Price your services by the hour and you set yourself up for commoditization.
Develop a fee based upon the value you provide and you are a trusted advisor who has aligned his interests with the interests of the client.
Incidentally, I have several business structures that help attorneys make a great living and live a great life ®. How much is making more money and getting home for dinner, on time, every night, worth to you?
Here are some other resources you need to review:
If you bill by the hour, you are not going to like this article very much. Few good relationships are built on a foundation of hourly bills. You can move to an alternative billing structure. Here are the reasons why you should.
If you want to move away from the traditional law firm billing model, this is an article that can get you off to a good start. Here we outline a quick and easy way to bill your clients and increase the trust they have in you.
In this article I take another shot at convincing you to look at the value you provide. The analogy I use is a bit “far out” but it makes the point well.
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