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Fees & Guarantee

I have controversial views about business coaching and I reflect that in my fees and guarantee.

This is good news because they are more client friendly than normal.

I have a strong belief that a coach shouldn’t benefit from big fees when the client isn’t getting many or even any benefits from the coaching.

I only ask you to pay a modest proportion of the fee up front before our sessions. Only when you are happy and believe that we have improved your business, will you be asked to pay the rest of the fee.

Let me explain my thinking.

I see coaching as something that we are both in together and we should both do well out of working with each other as well as having some fun along the way.

Sadly, I had an idealistic solution that has been abused by various people and that’s caused me problems in my restricted, health imposed semi retirement. I will only work with one main client a day and this means that our scheduled calls are very important to me and you can be assured of my best.

This one main client a day issue also means a lot of my subconscious time is spent on your issues along with my thinking away from the desk. I find walking my dog to be a time when I can find breakthroughs.

Here are the ways clients have sabotaged themselves:

  • Making appointments and not turning up or cancelling an hour before isn’t good for the client and it certainly isn’t good for me.
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  • Turning up but not doing the homework means our project doesn’t move forward and probably changes my entire plan for the session. This doesn’t help make coaching a success for either of us. Making a half-hearted attempt or doing it at the last minute isn’t good either.
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  • Going for a long period between coaching sessions is a problem. Any improvement project relies on building up and sustaining momentum.
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  • Not measuring changes in the business doesn’t give the client the feedback they need. Not sharing it with me means that we’re not in this together since I can’t see the true position of what’s happening.
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  • Not asking for help between sessions if they are stuck on what I’ve asked them to do.

You probably don’t think you’d do any of these things but they happen much too frequently.

However I don’t want to join the crowd of coaches that ask you to pay a big amount up front and who expect you to pay a high price for their time regardless of success and who don’t provide any kind of guarantee.

In my old method of charging, which only involved paying at the end, I think people have felt in their minds that our time together is free.

And sadly, people don’t place much value on things that are free yet my time is the most valuable thing to me.

My coaching sessions are notionally for 60 minutes but, again to give you my best and to help you to succeed, I don’t believe that sessions should stop when we are in the nitty gritty of an issue. I want to solve things and move on, not endlessly postpone them so you pay more fees.

This means my sessions can go for two hours, precisely because I don’t have another client appointment on the back of yours. Experience shows that more than two hours, without breaks leaves both of us drained. The sessions are interesting but intense.

My New Method For Fees And Guarantee

  1. There is a £50 fee required to be paid up front to book a coaching session in my diary. If you miss a session or postpone it without at least 72 hours notice, this fee is lost unless you have exceptional reasons. If I have to postpone, the fee is carried forward to the new appointment.
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  2. The remaining part of the coaching session fee (discounts available for bookings of multiple sessions) only becomes invoiced and payable when, at a scheduled project review, you confirm you believe that your business has benefited.

Fees & Discounts For My One-To-One Business Coaching Based On Weekly Skype Calls

  • One to four sessions booked – cost per session £250, of which £50 per session is paid upfront and the remainder at the end, when you feel it has been successful.
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  • Five to nine sessions – cost per session £200, of which £50 per session is paid upfront. The first project review will occur in session 5, at which stage we will decide whether the remaining payment for the five sessions received is payable and whether we wish to carry on working together.
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  • Ten sessions – cost per session £180, of which £50 per session is paid upfront. The first project review will occur in session 5, at which stage we will decide whether the remaining payment for the five sessions received is payable and whether we wish to carry on working together.

I also have other coaching schemes, either to provide more intensive help for business owners who need results quickly or a coaching by email option for those who want to keep costs to a minimum.

My Aim – A 500% Return On Your Investment In My Fees

I don’t think we should be starting a project unless the benefit for you is at least five times my expected fees. This means that you should get a 500% return on your investment.

Examples Of How This Works

All assume that you have gone through the Business SOS process first so that we have had a chance to talk through your issues and we believe we can solve them together.

This may seem complicated but I want to be fair to both of us and solve some of the ways clients sabotage themselves by introducing a small cost.

A Small Project – Three Sessions Booked

Total expected cost £750.

Initial payment £150 to book the coaching sessions.

Alternative scenarios

  1. The project is very successful – the remaining £600 is paid at the end. The client may then decide to start a new project with me. The total fee is £750.
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  2. The project hasn’t been a success – perhaps the client didn’t take the recommended actions or implemented them in a half-hearted way or, although it is unlikely, my recommended actions didn’t work.
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    The client pays £50 for each of the sessions booked – perhaps two sessions were cancelled at the last minute so in total five sessions were booked, three carried out and £250 has been paid to make those bookings.
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    The remaining £200 per session for the three sessions carried out is forgiven and never invoiced. The total fee paid is £250 and would have been only £150 if the original appointments had been kept.
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  3. The project has been a modest success – things didn’t go as well as expected but the client has still more than got his or her money back, but is unlikely to get a 500% return and 300% is more likely.
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    In this case £150 has been paid for the sessions held and the client agrees to pay another £300, scaling the total fee back to 3/5ths of the initial expected fee (based on only getting 300% instead of 500% return). The total fee is £450.

A Large Project Is Booked – Expected To Take A Few Bookings Of Ten Sessions Each

The first 10 sessions are expected to cost £1,800.

An initial deposit of £500 is payable to book the sessions. The client asks to pay this in two tranches of five and I agree so £250 is paid and the first five sessions are booked.

Alternative scenarios

  1. The first ten sessions go very well.
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    At the first project review after five sessions, the client agrees to pay the remaining £130 per session for the sessions received (total £650) and pays the deposit of £250 to book the next five sessions.
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    At the second project review, in session 10, the same happens and we are both happy to agree to move into the next group of ten sessions. The client pays the remaining £130 per session, bringing the total of these first ten sessions to £1,800.
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    A new deposit for sessions 11 to 15 is paid of £250.
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  2. The project struggles from the very start, for whatever reason.
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    At the first project review session 5, we both agree that the project should stop. The total paid is £250 to book the sessions and nothing else is payable.
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  3. The project gets off to a slow start but I’m confident.
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    At the first project review in session 5, we discuss why there is little to show for our work together and I express my confidence that we will succeed. Since the client hasn’t seen progress, the full invoice payment for the first five sessions is delayed until the session 10 review.
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    The client accepts my assurances and pays £250 to book sessions 6 to 10.
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    Or the client doesn’t accept what I say and thinks we should stop. Only the booking fee for the first five sessions has been paid and nothing else is payable.
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    Assuming we carry on, at the project review in session 10, we are both happy that there has been success and the remaining fee for all ten sessions becomes payable (£1,300). The client is happy to carry on for the next 10 and pays another booking fee of £250 to book sessions 11 to 15.
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  4. The project gets off to a slow start but the client remains confident but I’m uncertain.
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    At the first project review in session 5, we haven’t seen the progress we expected. Perhaps I feel that the client isn’t committed to the project because he isn’t carrying out the agreed tasks between sessions.
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    This is a difficult situation for me and I hate it when I feel more committed to improving the client’s business than he does.
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    I think the project should stop with just the session booking fee paid. The client doesn’t, and wants to carry on and promises to do better.
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    If I don’t believe him, the project stops.
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    If I’m prepared to accept his reassurances, I will ask for part payment for the sessions already held together with the booking fee for sessions 6 to 10.

I hope this makes sense but we can clear up any confusion about it if you want to become a client.