Discover Your Real Value
Make the time to work on your business — not just work for it
On Friday, I set aside some time to work on my business. During my rebranding this summer, I realized how frequently I get caught up in the day-to-day business of what I do: the emails and estimates, the coding and styling, the phone calls and Skype sessions. I was rarely asking myself what the next evolution of my business might be. Now, I’m making that time to ask myself how I want to grow.
Know what sets you apart
The task last week was to create a document that detailed what good website development was. I often find myself explaining to clients how what I do is different from some other developers out there. What I discovered in the process of writing the document was what I really bring to the project — and after evaluation, I decided that it might just be time to raise my prices (or at least to be insistent on whatever estimates I send out).
If you’re considering starting your own business or changing your rates, I highly recommend you try this exercise.
Discover Your Real Value: An Exercise for Business Owners
1. Divide your page into two columns. At the top of the first column, write “what you’re getting” and list all of the items your client is obviously paying for. In mine, I had notes about my development style, my quick communication, and the little extras I often add into a package at no cost, like the addition of Google Analytics code to a client’s site.
2. At the top of the other column, write “what you’re really getting” and list all of the extras your client is getting and may not know about. For me, this was the way I work with designers, my general positivity, and the other unexpected bonuses of working with me. For a jewelry designer, this may be giving clients information about where materials were sourced or the story behind where the inspiration for a particular piece came from.
You may find that one column is shorter than the other; that’s totally OK. There’s no wrong or right here. But if you stumble when it comes to the second column, ask yourself what you want to be giving to clients that you aren’t at the moment. Decide if that’s something you want to incorporate going forward.
You do so much more than simply provide a service or sell a product. Knowing what your more is will let your business shine even more.