Why I Stopped Charging an Hourly Rate

by | Apr 28, 2021 | General

Well, we finished one tax year in the UK and began another. If you’re not in the UK, you might not know this but our standard tax year runs from April 6th to April 5th.

Yes, it’s weird and makes zero sense but there you have it… British eccentricity.

As usual, I’m digressing. Let me climb back down the tangent tree and back to my point.

I’ve had a busy March.

🚀 I launched the WP MOTs

😍 Took on FOUR new clients (I K R!? 🤷‍♀️ )

🏠 Moved house

and

💉 Got my covid jab… and had the subsequent fatigue (but it’s worth it to me).

I also laid everything HYT out in an easy-to-read format, All the Things I offer, my client list, my content calendar and my back-end systems. (I used AirTable for this in case you’re interested. It’s like spreadsheets but pretty & fun & simple to use. Check that out here)

And seeing my offers there, I realised nothing I offer is by the hour.

I don’t charge by the hour at all and that’s a place I’ve wanted to be at since 2018 when I lived in Bucharest.

📅 30 months…

🌍 3 countries…

and

🏙️ 7 cities later…

I’m there!

I tried to do it by reading all that guff on the internet about “packaging” services and “articulating value” and “being more profitable” and a bazillion other blog posts and nothing really helped.

In the end, it came down to the beach.

I walk on the beach a lot. I do some of my best thinking there.

What I do for my clients isn’t just some tech job that you could hire someone off Fiverr or Upwork to do.

I’m all about helping people get their business up and running efficiently online, so they don’t have to spend fuck-tonnes of time and energy stuck in the tech and admin weeds!

I really like to listen to my people, I’m not into trying to shoehorn them into a solution.

I’ve had that done to me and it’s highly unpleasant. Like, tramples on your energy and self-esteem unpleasant, which leads to overwhelm and procrastination and wondering if you should just chuck yourself in the sea!

So, I listen to my clients. I let it sit in my head. I take long walks on the beach, staring at the sky on the horizon and let answers for client conundrums come.

And I can’t charge by the hour for that.

My brain floats freely as my feet walk on the sand.

It goes from…

“Paris is over there”

“The sea looks nice”

“LW is an introverted, deep thinker and likes to prepare for calls so needs some questions asked first”

“Blimey! That wind is cold!”

“I’d love a hot chocolate but the café’s shut and their hot choc is caca!”

“I love this track; I wonder if anyone will notice if I have a little dance?”

“If I make AM a video, she’ll enjoy it more than a written doc”

etc etc…

So, do I?

a) Open a time tracking app on my phone and stop/start it (whilst also using the phone to take pics and listen to music)

b) Say, “fuck that” and just dump the hourly rate and get on with walking, taking pics and listening to dark German techno?

I find it’s much more of a winner to just do a project rate and not worry too much about the time.

Maybe I’m wrong, but I like it, my clients like it and it means I do a much better job. 😊

I believe this is a situation full of win. 😉

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