The Stuff of Fairy Tales
Well, I did it again.
After listening to the fears, concerns, and apprehensions of a woman whining about the dangers before her, I rode in on my white horse – with sword in hand – and stuck that fire-breathing beast. He tipped right over into a heap of problem solved.
And, then, oh, wow! — the ship hit the sand.
Come to find out, that was her Pet Dragon.
Once upon a time…
I’ve been thinking.
Rather than I charge you a Price for Value — how ’bout we just exchange Value.
On the horizon, I can see opportunities requiring more of a Process focus: QuickBooks, Bill.com, TSheets, Applications (etc.) — worthy Projects for which I do not want the responsibility.
And, if you have opportunities for People coaching, consulting, etc. for whom you might want help — I am interested in assisting YOU. (Because my new focus and purpose is: POP)
So, as Time marches forward, maybe, we can be available Resources — for each other.
In the interim, we can connect remotely and set the parameters for a mutually beneficial professional relationship.
What are your Thoughts?
Her Response (Word-for-Word, I Kid You Not)
I think I would like to pay you for your services – at least initially until we get better acquainted with our skill sets and what we desire to do. I am just getting my feet back under me this week – having been out all week last week. But I’ve been thinking about our conversation and how we might work together. I feel like I don’t have many answers in that regard. Would a standing Thursday 9 a.m., 1-2 hour meeting work for you? I’m thinking every other week as opposed to every week and if that were the case, probably 2 hours would be better than one. That being said, I could do this Thursday but not next. Then if I just get it on the calendar, I should be able to make that work.
Do you think you could guide me through working on value pricing/niche development within my business and learning to focus on the types of things you focus on, i.e., helping people get what they want, POP, value as opposed to compliance work? I’m asking if you feel this is skill set you have an could help me work on modeling my business more appropriately. If you feel this is a conflict – as we’re trying to “work in the same space” – I totally can understand that. However, I think there is enough work to go around – but appreciate your thoughts as well.
I have expertise on the QuickBooks side and integrations, etc., for sure and don’t know that I want to give that up. Maybe that’s where my niche is to focus. Maybe Carla Caldwell – gal I told you about who does what I’m asking you to do – is my coach, but you help guide me through organizing all this. I’m sort of lost when I think about all of it.
You asked me to price the service you’d provide. I will be brave and throw out a number. I was thinking $200 for a 2 hour session is too low and $400 seems to high. Maybe we’re in the middle at $300 for each 1-2 hour session? Not committing to 2 full hours – just what we need that time to get our work done?
Thanks Kim. Talk to you soon!
Yes — I accept your Proposal.
This is my Understanding:
• You will pay for my Coaching and Consulting Services.
• We will connect every-other Thursday, at 9:00 AM, for no more than 2 Hours.
• We will begin each remote Coaching and Consulting Session with your Thoughts and Questions.
• My focus will be on sharing concepts relative to Value Pricing, Psychology of Coaching, and Practical Application to Your Niche.
• We are not Competitors — We will Complement one another.
• After all, it is impossible to be competitors — because, we are unique Artists and one-of-a-kind Value Creators.
• For those individuals seeking QuickBooks type processes, with accompanying App integrations, I will provide an introduction to You.
• I will establish a Google Drive portal for the sharing of Resources — which will assist in keeping us Organized.
• I will prepare — and, submit for your approval — a Contract for Coaching and Consulting Services.
• Acceptance of the Coaching and Consulting Contract will be accomplished by the payment of a $100 ‘Commitment’ Fee.
• The fee for my Coaching and Consulting Services will be $300 per Session.
To prepare for our first remote Session, tomorrow, Thursday, August 9th, at 9:00 AM, I suggest the following:
• Read the article: I AM — do the exercise of finishing the I am… Statement — and, be ready to Share with me.
• From your Thoughts and Questions list, pick one item of greatest importance to You — and, be ready to Share with me.
• To select that first item, You might find it beneficial to choose an issue, which you know will ‘feel good’ — as you take the First Step toward your desired Goals.
Acceptance of the Coaching and Consulting Contract will be accomplished by making an Online Payment from the QBO Invoice that I will transmit to You.
If any questions, or concerns, please, contact me immediately.
Seen One — Seen ’em All
We’ve all seen a Contract. Every professional has their boilerplate version. I had to revamp my four pages to fit the parameters of a $300 Coaching Session. I will confess, this whole episode was beginning to feel odd. I was going along to get along. Yet, the intent was pure — this was a ‘friend’ whom I wanted to help.
As the reader of this comedic drama, all of your warning bells, sirens, and whistles are probably going off right about now. Me, at this point, I’m still clueless.
Except, I took great care to make the money part of the Contact crystal clear.
YOU are committing to pay SAGETALK —
a one time non-refundable sum of $100 + payments of $300
per 2-Hour Sessions for access to – and use of – the SAGETALK Program.
The first $300 payment will be due upon receipt by YOU of a QBO Invoice.
Yes, I know, “Communication is what the listener does.” But, I had given this my best effort.
Session Number 1
We had fun!
Two hours of non-stop banter, questions, stories, teasing — and, otherwise good-natured fun. Or, anyways, as much FUN as two CPAs can muster.
And, yes, we did a LOT of great work, too.
Prior to our first session, the Contract and Invoice for $100 (the Commitment fee) had been emailed and Payment received. As promised, after the Session, I emailed a QuickBooks Online invoice for $300.
This was her response (Word-for-Word, I Kid You Not):
I paid this. I didn’t realize that the $100 was over and above the $300 per session. I thought the $100 was just an I’m serious about this and want to get started. I thought this invoice might be for $200. Thoughts are appreciated. Thank you. (Maybe I didn’t read well enough!)
Those people, who refuse to make a decision, end up high-centering on the fork-in-the-road. Look at the word closer: ma-Y-be.
See the fork-in-the-road? The people who are fond of maybe are reluctant to choose — left, or right, at Oak Street.
To encourage us, always, to make a decision, look at ma-Y-be, again.
Ma = Cry Baby
Be = A Creator
Y = Choose to Be
My original mistake was giving up on my sincere premise of giving to a Friend. At the moment money was involved — Price for Services — there was a business transaction and professional relationship.
Because of my first mistake, clearly defined expectations were impossible. As a result, there was no possibility, or probability, of success.
What begins twisted ends twisted.
I wanted to share with a Friend —and, a Client simply wanted a business transaction and professional relationship.
So, thank goodness for the Termination Clause:
SAGETALK may terminate this Agreement at any time in its discretion, upon notice to YOU. Paragraph 3.1. below shall survive termination of this Agreement, binding YOU to Confidentiality in perpetuity.
I immediately initiated an online transaction with Wells Fargo for the $400 to be refunded by Paper Check. I had failed to meet her expectations.
Our two hour Tango high-centered on the fork-in-the-road with my acquiescence to follow the lead of someone who does not understand Value Pricing. That’s why she suggested a relationship at the very beginning.
Value Pricing Model
She asked for an understanding of Value Pricing. For two hours I told her about the concept — yet, I have a process to show, anyone, how it’s done.
• My goal is to provide Value that exceeds your Expectations by (at least) a factor of 3.
• Because I offer a money-back Guarantee, negotiation on Price is irrelevant.
• I will deliver Value (x 3) to the level – and beyond – of whatever the chosen Price.
• YOU choose the Price, clearly define the Objectives, and set expectations for Results.
• I will choose the period of Time – during which we will work – Together.
Silly me, I more than bent my own rules — I broke them. There is a better way. I have designed three Steps to prequalify anyone wanting to do Business with me.
Pet Dragon Resolution
There are Questions in each of the three Steps (each more intense than the preceding) testing for Commitment (the exact opposite of her Pet Dragon: NO Commitment).
Why didn’t I lead her through these Steps?
Come to find out, I had a rascally Pet Dragon hiding in my own dang forest: People PLEASER.
He has been dispatched to Dragon heaven.
… and, everyone else lived happily forever, after.