What do you charge?

You just got off the phone with a client to understand their needs and greatest challenges. Now, it’s time to write the proposal for that talk, workshop or training course they have asked for.

You want to make sure your fee is not so low that they under-value you, but not too high so they price you out of the opportunity.

What should you charge?

I constantly get requests for help pricing. And every single time, I respond with one simple question:

“What is their budget?”  

Here’s the answer I get back over 90% of the time, “I don’t know. I didn’t ask.”

Wouldn’t knowing what their budget is in advance give you a better idea of what you are working with? It helps you determine if you want to stay in the game or where you may be able to shift the scope of work to stay within that budget.

But here’s the reality. We don’t ask the question because it’s uncomfortable for us to talk about money. We avoid it and instead work in a vacuum and struggle each time we write a proposal.

I know what you’re thinking…Most of them don’t know their budget or won’t share it, so why ask?

Yup, you are right. Most don’t share it or say they don’t know it.

BUT, they always have an idea of what they want to spend. In fact, if you share a range of fees with them in a conversational manner, you will get your answer pretty quickly.

Before you write that proposal, ask them their budget. If they don’t know what it is or won’t share it, try out this response

“My workshops range from $X to $Y depending on the amount of customization, the length, audience size and location. I never like my proposals to be a surprise. Is this within the range you were thinking? Is there a part of that range that would be a clear ‘no’?”

Over 90% of the time, they will quickly tell you what is too much.

Now, you have the information you need.

This doesn’t have to be difficult if we approach it like any other conversation we have with a potential client to understand their needs.

I invite you to try this out and share your experiences below.

It’s much easier than throwing something over the wall and hoping they say yes!

Need help with writing your proposal and/or pricing, reach out!


  1. I love the way you boil things down to the basics, to what something is really all about. So effective! Thanks for sharing your knowledge.

  2. You are most welcome Suzandeise! Let’s reconnect soon!!

  3. What a great article! So helpful. Keep it conversational!

  4. Thanks, Gina!! Glad you liked it.

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