Set sail or stay safe dockside?

A ship in the harbor is safe

But that’s not what ships are for.

I’m thinking a lot about the pull we feel between being safe and venturing out.

Why am I focusing on this now?

I attended a webinar about creating digital courses.

The expert is over the top energetic.

She scared the hell out of me!

So much work; a lot of tech that I don’t know how to use; and social media marketing, O.M.G.

Then she said, “Sticking with what you know is safe.”

But that’s not where the growth is.

…Extra thousands and thousands of dollars.

…Time you free up for other things.

…People whose lives you can change.

When we continue to do what we’re used to doing we feel safe.

We know the steps to take, the responses to expect, the results to come.

Who wouldn’t want that?

Especially when the world around us seems to crash and burn daily.

…the dot com boom and the dot com bust.

…the Great Recession of the 2008-09.

…threats around the globe and in our own backyards right now.

So, yes, staying safe makes perfect sense.

Except….is that what got you into business?

To build a ship and stay in port?

Or to build as sturdy a vessel as you could, and then go out to sea and see the world?

I think that pricing mindset is like that.

We built our foundation on the pricing approach everyone is familiar with.

Charging by the hour.

Set a rate , track your time, and send an invoice to the client every 2 or 4 weeks.

It’s working. You have the systems in place, it’s comfortable.

But…maybe this ship needs some retrofitting in order to go farther afield.

That retrofitting could be IMPACT Based Pricing.

Instead of pretending that time is valuable and attaching dollars to units of time, IMPACT Based Pricing ties the fee to the life changing differences you deliver to your clients.

Do you underestimate the life changing differences you deliver?

Some might say, “hey a business tax return doesn’t change lives, it’s just compliance with our laws.”

Or they might say, “compliance with any government regulation, that’s not life changing.”

How could web design, videos, or ghost writing be life changing?

If you dismiss your own work, your clients will do that as well.

Stop and think about the kinds of work you do everyday.

Why do people buy it?

They had a problem or an issue. It was on their mind every day. They spent time thinking about it. They invested energy into worry or debating alternatives. They wanted to free themselves from the stranglehold it had on them.

That’s changing lives.

Some changes are small or have short term duration.

Some changes are huge and have long term duration.

Tax returns only solve e the problem for one year, you say?

Yes, and…delivering them to the IRS on time and accurately means the owner can devote their time and energy to company matters that are future looking.

Every design firm is committed to improving the lives of their clients. Web design, landscape design, interior design, marketing and branding design—every one of these fulfills a need. When that need is met, the owner is free to focus on the next step up their ladder of success.

When you dismiss your own work as not life changing, your clients will see it that way.

When you believe without a doubt that your knowledge and expertise deliver life changing differences to clients, your clients will believe that too.

And then you can get paid for those life changing differences.

For being the ship that sets sail, out of the safe harbor and into the vast ocean of opportunities.

Are you going set sail?

What would it mean to you to leave the safe harbor of hourly billing and adopt IMPACT Based Pricing?



Time with family.

Time to enjoy hobbies, travel, pickleball?

Email me and tell me how you’re setting sail away from the safe harbor of hourly billing.


P.S. When you’re ready here are a few ways I can help you explore the wide world out there.

 Think Tank: 90 minutes to go deep on one/two issues or problems of your choice. $425. Email or text Think Tank to  703-801-0345to schedule yours.

Follow/connect with me on LinkedIn.


Invite me to speak to your executive team and associates. I love the “aha” moments when you realize that you do in fact deliver life changing differences to your clients and can get paid for that.

Forward this newsletter to a colleague or associate. Invite them to subscribe.


Work with me one-on-one. I do not do ‘masterclasses’ or peer groups because I personally do not like spending 9/10 of the time working on other people’s problems. If I’m investing money and energy with an expert,  I want to work on my problems or meet my needs. That’s what my one-on-one consulting is: all you, all the time. And the fees are intimately tied to the life changing differences I deliver to you and your firm. Email me, or text ONEONONE to 703-801-0345.

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