3 Biggest Blunders Most Entrepreneurs Make That Keep Them Overwhelmed, Overworked and Underpaid (Part 3)

Have you been under charging and over-delivering, and you wish you had someone to help you price your coaching services?

Are you struggling with how much to charge and how to confidently talk about your fees?

You started your business because you wanted to create and grow something that inspires you, provides you income to design your dream life and make a big impact in the world.

Yet, things are not going according to plan.

You’re great at your job. Your clients are happy.  You love what you, but it is so draining that you’re thinking of going back to that safe job you quit to live this so-called entrepreneur dream life.

What gives?

In Part 1, we discussed the first of the 3 Biggest Blunders Most Entrepreneurs Make That Keep Them Overwhelmed, Overworked and Underpaid.

Specifically, the “[l]ack of a crystal-clear, powerful vision.”

In Part 2, we discussed the second Biggest Blunder, which may also be one of the biggest headaches, especially for service-based entrepreneurs, including coaches; “Failure to identify a Niche.”

And, when it comes to the No. 1 Biggest Blunder, women entrepreneurs lead the pack.

So, what’s the top self-sabotaging culprit?

  1. Failure to Own Your Value and Confidently Price Your Services to Charge What You’re Worth.*

*Please note that this blog post contains generalizations based on my personal experiences.  They do not reflect the experiences of all women entrepreneurs.

I absolutely love coaching! And I would do it for free even if I wasn’t getting paid.  Actually, let’s be honest, I used to do it for free a lot.  When I started my business, I was at the height of my money blocks.  My relationship with money was disempowering and overwhelming.

I started out billing by the hour because I wasn’t ready to own my brilliance, or my value and it was a familiar habit from my former life as an attorney.

I admit. I did not hold my clients as whole and complete.  I did not hold them as capable of paying for their services.  I did not hold them as powerful, abundant or smart enough to figure out how to pay for what they wanted.  I believed all the “I don’t have money” scarcity stories AND sometimes even made the disempowering decision for them.

Why? Because I was holding on tight to my own scarcity stories.  Owning my worth meant I had to let go of the security blanket of acting powerless.  I would have to own that I was ENOUGH.  I wasn’t ready to be that secure.  I needed a few years of feeling like shit and judging myself every day.

It was a safe space for me – familiar and sweet; my comfort zone.  From that place, I didn’t have show up as my best and highest self.

At my lowest point, a client offered to pay me, and I told her, “It’s ok, I’ll do it for free.” She said no to the freebie and wrote a check for the payment.  She later told me she felt completely disempowered and disrespected by my assumption that she didn’t think highly enough of herself to pay for her own personal development.

In the realm of my limiting beliefs, I thought she’d be happy I was doing her a favor. So, why was she pissed?  Who wouldn’t want a discount or freebie, right?

Wrong.

She later told me she would have paid more, but she figured she’d take advantage of whatever I was being insecure about.

It wasn’t only in my coaching business that I wasn’t owning my value and confidently charging what I was worth.

As a fashion designer, I used to charge significantly less for all my custom, handmade work because I believed that everyone should be able to afford my work. It never even dawned on me that not everyone wanted to buy my work.

A few months after hiring my first coach, I 5x’d (is that even a word?) all my prices and all my ideal clients showed up. I sold out of my jewelry collection and finally learned how to truly charge my worth.  But I wasn’t just upping my pricing for the sake of it.

I had to nail my niche, create a unique brand, a signature system, and packaging that spoke to the heart and soul of what my clients and customers wanted in their lives.  Value is everything.

My disempowering money blocks were not just about money.  That relationship merely mirrored every other relationship in my life and business.  Once I healed my relationship to money, I healed my life and business.

I finally recognized that how you do money is how you do everything.

In my work, I notice that a few of my clients walk the fine line between owning their value and trying to make sure everyone can afford their services/products. This leaves them undercharging and over-delivering, which in turn has them tired, burnt out, overwhelmed and losing their passion for their work.

I’m familiar with that pain. Struggling with how much to charge is a well-known secret, especially with passionate, heart-centered, generous coaches.

In my coaching experience, there are a few practical strategies, which coupled with powerful coaching, have the power to:

  1. Immediately transform doubt about what to charge into heartfelt, unstoppable confidence in the value you deliver;
  2. Solve the uncomfortable problem of what to say when clients ask, “How much do you charge?”;
  3. Discover exactly what to charge for each of your services, programs or packages, including strategies for increasing your cash flow with more pay-in-full clients; and
  4. Create unshakable confidence and belief in why you are worth charging higher fees and encourage full pay clients.

Pricing can make or break a business. Creating a successful business takes more than “just doing.”  Who we are being creates the space to make magic and do the impossible.  Who we are being about our value, our time, our money, our skills and expertise, our gifts and talents, and our self-worth are crucial to the going concern of our business.

When it comes to supporting women to confidently price their goods or services, do the work they love and create the life and business of their dreams, I believe there is nothing to fix, and I hold each women entrepreneur as whole and complete, capable and powerful, brilliant and unique.

Two of the most common questions I get from women entrepreneurs include “How can you help me with my pricing? And how does that tie in to the rest of my business plan to create 6 or 7 figures?

Based on my experiences both as a woman entrepreneur and a life and business coach, I create custom and bespoke coaching experiences to support each woman with my Signature System for Women Entrepreneurs.

How does this support women entrepreneurs to Confidently Price their Services or Goods?

I’ve included 3 of the 7 baby steps (from my Signature System) that I use both in my own coaching business and to help women entrepreneurs confidently price their services/goods and create the business of their dreams.

Each step creates a spring board for the next so that women entrepreneurs kick self-sabotage to the curb and finally start to price and charge what they’re worth, AND double, triple or even 10X their business income, while working less AND making a bigger impact.

(Each of the steps identified below (AND THE OTHER 4 not included in this post) will be discussed in detail in my upcoming EXCLUSIVE Subscriber-ONLY Newsletters on “How to Create a Successful Coaching Business”).

Bonus! Uncover Your Money Blocks and Reset Your Money Mindset.

First, what exactly is a money block or limiting belief. It’s the beliefs about money that you’ve been taught throughout your life, or you’ve inherited from your family as you were growing up.

While I doubt most women entrepreneurs are walking around worried about their mindset or even aware that they have money blocks that are tied to the success or failure of their business, it is the No. 1 obstacle that keeps women from succeeding in business.

Mindset is 99% of business and it is intimately connected to pricing.

So how does money mindset show up to self-sabotage even the most high-performing entrepreneurs?

Five of the most common scenarios include:

  1. Stressing over whether or now you’re going to get new clients this month.
  2. Stressing over what to say to your husband when he asks how business is going this month.
  3. Stressing over whether you must go back to a corporate job because your savings is running out.
  4. Overworking because you had a parent who worked 24/7 to create a great life for you, and NOW you’ve convinced yourself — even with evidence to the contrary —that you too must work really, really hard, and that without the overwhelm and stress, you don’t feel like you have earned your success.
  5. Insecure and worried that nobody will pay you for what you offer because there are so many high profile and talented people offering similar services or products. Who am I to Coach anyone anyway?

Look, if you’re anything like me, it’s quite easy to believe you can transform your money stories and feelings of unworthiness on your own.

But what is predictable?

I’m not sure about you. But, I learned the hard way that even with my best intentions, reading all the personal development books in the world, watching all the motivational and inspiring YouTube videos from my favorite coaches, and speaking “I AM Enough” mantras, were not enough to shift my disempowering stories on my own.

Trying to shift limiting beliefs with the same mind that created them (and has subconsciously practiced them for the last 20 or 30 years) is like chasing your tail.

The bottom line is that if you have a limiting money story that people can’t afford to pay for your services or products, then your business vision will be limited to something that does not create money, profits or the impact you desire. And you’ll inevitably attract clients who don’t want to pay you.

Working with a coach to remove the money blocks, creating a new, empowering money story and owning your worth creates room for magic and possibility where you’re perfectly aligned with your goals and powerfully supported to reach them.

  • Nail Your Viable Niche

Few things cause more angst in the minds of coaches and service providers than picking one problem to help clients solve; i.e.;, nailing a viable niche.  When I started coaching, I remember grappling with the whole “To Niche or Not to Niche” issue.  After all, why limit myself to just one issue when I’m just so much more than right?

But I soon found out that I was struggling to create great clients. I was attracting everyone, and I wasn’t really enjoying working with everyone.  Yet, narrowing my market down to a problem people already know they have and know they really want to solve was like settling in for a root canal.  I had a lot of resistance.

Intellectually, I knew that identifying a niche would easily allow me to market to my ideal clients and create a marketing message that resonated with their heart and soul, but my insecurities and limiting beliefs kicked in to make it all about me.

Who was I to pretend to be an expert at anything?  Isn’t that what niching is all about?  I’m a coach, not a consultant.  I don’t have to get you anywhere. I dance in the moment.  Why can’t I just serve everyone?  Why discriminate and limit myself to just one two coaching issues.  I was so torn.

It wasn’t until I started working with my business coach that I realized that not picking a niche was not this honorable thing I was doing to serve the world.  It came from a place of scarcity.

Once I got past my issues and decided on a niche, my business became more fun.  I found my coaching nirvana.  My people!  The ones I wanted to write newsletters to, write blogging posts for, create programs for and market exclusively to.  It was easier and fun to craft a marketing plan to create clients -1 clear message that speaks to her greatest pain.

I also learned something interesting.  The more I narrowed and focused on my ideal clients in my target market, the more I attracted other types of clients.

Narrowing my niche did not exclude others.  It opened up a whole new world of women that I enjoy working with and supporting every day.

The bottom line is that narrowing your niche allows you to serve deeply, make a bigger impact and empower you to own your value, and confidently price your services and charge your worth.

My struggle to find my niche is no different than what I hear from other coaches or entrepreneurs.  I parted ways with my first business coach because I couldn’t imagine what I described as putting me in a box and limiting my options with whole niching thing.

Now, I enjoy helping clients get past any stories that discovering their niche is hard.   Working together, we quickly get them out of “niche overwhelm” so they can start attracting new clients with freedom, clarity and confidence.

Working with a coach helps you determine whether your niche is “hot or not,” which saves you time and effort to achieve your business goals, AND helps you process all the triggering emotions around niching, that interfere with your pricing, marketing, client creation and sales, as well as your productivity, so that they you’re no longer taken out by fear, stress, overwhelm, or anxiety.

  • Create a Signature System

A powerful business vision, premium money mindset and viable niche that creates ideal clients and a unique marketing message are a catalyst to transforming your God-given gifts, talents, ideas, strengths and skills into a signature system that takes your clients or customers to the next level.

Because very few people are walking around looking for a coach or even know what coaching is, it is important to know your ideal client’s problems and be able to create a marketing message that directly speaks to that pain point.

So, what’s a signature system?

It is your own unique and special way of working with your clients every day. It takes into account your life experiences, training and all your gifts and talents.

No one can do what you do the way you do it, and once you figure out a way to tailor each of the steps you take a client through in your coaching business, then you’ll be able to create a system that has your ideal clients screaming, “Yes, yes, and Yes. More please.”

It’s not about telling your clients what to do, or how to do it, or doing the work for them.

It is about leveraging your time, expertise and talents to stop trading time for money, and create consistent predictable income.

When working with clients, I walk them step by step through how to transform their expertise – including the magic that makes them unique – into an exciting Signature System that attracts a steady stream of ideal clients.

Coaching allows you to quickly transform that “thing you do” into an exciting Signature System that is easy to market and enroll new clients into.

Working with a coach also eliminates the “what do I offer” overwhelm, clarifying your most profitable path to a thriving business and high-end offers.

And finally, it positions you as a valued expert in the eyes of your ideal clients, and is useful for attracting new clients quickly, easily and with less marketing.

The bottom line is that a signature system gives you maximum confidence when charging for your work. Prospective clients know exactly how you’ll move them from pain point to bliss. 

That is PRICELESS.

  • Create High-End Packages and Programs that Sell

What’s the ultimate benefit of creating a signature system? The ability to create premium programs and packages that sell.  High-End Packages are not about getting rich.  They are better for your ideal clients because they create value.

Let’s say you’re an attorney who just had a baby and you want to lose 25 lbs. before returning to work.

You have a choice between two coaches.

A Life Coach offering general ongoing coaching to gain confidence to get the body you want.

A Health and Fitness Coach whose niche is “high-performing professional women who want to lose their pregnancy weight before returning to work from maternity leave.”

She’s offering one of her high-end packages, 90-Days to a Slimmer, Fitter Post-Baby Body. She can clearly articulate each step of her signature system and how it applies to exactly what you’re looking for.

You know exactly how this is going to help you get the solution you want.

Your pain points are screaming, Yes, Yes, Yes!

In both cases, you’re getting coaching. Neither coach is going to lose the weight for you, do the work for you or tell you what to you.  You’ll remain the expert on your life.  They’ll both hold you to the highest version of yourself, dance in the moment with their coaching, and bridge the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in 90 days.

Don’t worry, you don’t have to decide today.

Coaching is not the only business area where packages make a difference.  Any service-based industry is perfect.  I have yet to find a business that does not have the opportunity to offer packages and benefits.

And the upside?  You’re serving clients who truly want what you’re offering, AND you work fewer hours for significantly more income and HUGE impact.

Coaching women entrepreneurs in this area empowers them to take a leadership role in creating the best value for their clients, shift out of the trading time for dollars model and get into the mindset of owning their worth and value.

Step by step, you create packages based on value that uniquely sets you apart and structures your services to massively free your time and increase your income so that you’re FREE from over-delivering and under-charging.

The bottom line is that you own your value, confidently charge what you’re worth, and trim the number of days you’re working each month, so you enjoy more free time and increase your happiness.

Finally Charging What You’re Worth

Now that everything else is in place, you’re ready to roll.

Your Mindset + Niche + Ideal Clients + Marketing Message + Signature System + Packages = Pricing.

There is no right or wrong way to decide what to charge, but when you have a step by step methodology for doing your work, it empowers you to immediately transform doubt about what to charge into heartfelt, unstoppable confidence in the value you deliver.

Working with a coach will help you discover exactly what to charge for each of your services, programs or packages, including strategies for increasing your cash flow with more pay-in-full clients.

The bottom line is that determining your prices is a personal process.  You know your value best, and you know the results your clients are getting.  You’re the expert on your business and you get to decide whether you want to take action or not. 

You ultimately decide your value or worth in the market place and the solution you provide to your clients.

It’s not just about making money. It’s about going deeper than just trying to be Enough and building a business that lights you up in every area of life AND empowers you to make a bigger impact.

Plus, learning how to avoid some of the biggest blunders coaches make doesn’t hurt either.

 

I love hearing from you! Comment below and share your thoughts.

Want to connect? Email me at mimidabo@lifecoachforwomen to share your story, your perspective, your comments or your questions.

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Peace and Love,
Your Life and Business Coach
MiMi Dabo, MBA, CPA, JD
**************
I help women entrepreneurs, coaches and business owners create successful businesses without burnout and overwhelm, create ideal clients in their viable niche, confidently charge premium prices for high-end programs and packages, and double, triple or 10x their income with less work, less guilt and a bigger impact.

Take the FREE Business Success Quiz at www.lifecoachforwomen.com.

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