Have you ever been in a situation where someone wanted your services but didn’t expect to have a consulting fee associated? Well, I have …too many times. It is an uncomfortable situation for sure!
It leaves you feeling uneasy to say the least. I tried to identify where the “uneasiness” comes from, you know that voice inside you that says, “YOU SHOUDN’T BE DOING THIS!”
Here are (3) common characteristics that do not serve us women entrepreneurs. I just recently came to terms with this. I hope sharing my experience will empower you, my fellow DeW.
- “Happy Helpers,”-people pleasers, nurturers, etc.… Let’s face it. Most of us have been raised to be born helpers. “Sure, I can help you,” is my first gut reaction. Even, “happy to help” as I have regurgitated throughout my career.
- Justifiers – Justifying the request…. “Well, it will only take me 15 minutes.30 minutes tops!
- Self-Doubters- Who Do I Think I am? Do I dare ask them to PAY ME for my time? I don’t want to come across arrogant. What if they are turned off by my request?
Imagine if a well-established CEO was asked for free services. Do you think he/she would go through the same litany as mentioned above? I tend to think not. Let’s think like a Confident CEO, “CC” for short. C’mon join me for this exercise, it will be fun!
PHONE CALL FROM CLIENT:
“So, “CC,” we would like to setup up a call and have you review our materials it will only take ½ hours, 1-hour tops.”
“CC” responds, “Certainly, I will send you a link to schedule a call. My rate is $10K/hour. I accept credit cards and will provide an electronic invoice based on the length of the call. I look forward to connecting.
Did “CC” go through the litany of the 3 Characteristics Listed Above? I think not!
ACT LIKE A CONFIDENT CEO:
3 Ways to Establish Boundaries:
- Be Direct – If the client acted brazen enough to ask you to provide services at no cost, be brazen right back! Clearly lay out your consulting fees. What is the worst that can happen? They say no and you are not giving your time away. No harm no fowl.
- Refrain from Guilt – Do you think “CC” felt any twinges of guilt? I don’t! Why, because this is business. This is not a family or friend request. Guilt and business don’t mix!
- Know your Worth – “CC” was “happy to help” but also knows “helping” has value. “CC” was also “happy” to send an invoice. “CC knows his/her time is valuable and is not afraid to ask what he/she deserves. Be like “CC.”
The next time you get a request to provide services at no cost, ask yourself “what would the more confident version of me do?” Then refer to the 3 Ways to Establish Boundaries as a guideline. If you still feel uncomfortable, reach out to a fellow Dew to remind you just how valuable you are!
I just did this early this morning and my inner “CC” high fived me. In fact, it freed up my valuable time to write this blog 😊 Now, I am truly “happy to help.” I hope you will be too if placed in the same situation.