By , on Business Management.

There are countless reasons NOT to increase your fees now, and during an economic slowdown perhaps even pressure to lower them. As a business and personal coach I hear these arguments from my clients every day! Yet most professional people are genuinely interested in making a better living. So here are five great reasons to increase your fees.

1. Because you are worth it
There are others out there providing the same service you do but charging more, even offering an inferior service. I coached a technical illustrator who was appalled at the prices quoted by her male colleagues. She said it showed how arrogant they were. “No”, I said, “it shows that you are worth it, too. The difference is, they believe it and you don’t.”

2. So you can hear “no” more often
So how do you know if the market will make room for your fee increase? If your prospects always say ‘yes’ to your quote, you are undervaluing yourself. Aim for a fee that gets a “no” more often. If no one ever objects to your rate, it’s time to increase that fee.

3. To learn more about your customers
If you don’t hear “no” from prospects, you are missing a valuable opportunity to gather more information. When you increase your fee, and people object to it, ask questions. Aim to identify their concerns and objections. In some instances you will be able to clarify their objections and win their business, and the more you immerse yourself in those conversations the more insight you will develop into why your skill is valuable to people.

4. To set higher standards for who you choose as clients
Ask yourself, “Whom do I really want to work with?” I am sure the answer is “clients who value my work.” I coached an Interior Designer who wanted to triple her business’ income in twelve weeks. She analyzed her revenues and found the clients consuming the most of her time with legwork were costing her money, not making her money. I coached her to fire them. That made room for two new, profitable clients. Now that she knew the characteristics of profitable clients, she found them easily. So just like that, she tripled her income.

5. To get you thinking creatively
Finally, we business people often get into a rut in our thinking. Try listing 10 ways to increase your revenues by 10%. I am willing to bet that the items on the list are similar to how you do things now, but involve doing more, and doing better. Now list 10 ways to double your revenues. The items on this second list are probably in a whole new league when compared to what you do now.

I forgot to add that by increasing your fee you can earn more and work less! That may be the most compelling reason of all.

© Jo Miller
Jo Miller is a Women’s Leadership Coach who assists managerial and executive women to realize their potential as leaders. Visit www.jomiller.netto schedule a free leadership coaching session.