Average consultant fees

Average consultant rates tend to be, well, typical. If you’re hiring or working as an average consultant rates should be lacklustre – because, well, they’re average! What’s more important is the value provided by the consultant. It’s not so much about the cost of hiring the consultant as it is about the value of the consultant’s solution.

For example, say you hire a graphic design consultant for $200 to come up with a design for a new logo. Another consultant charges $7,500, but includes presentation of three concepts, mock ups of three concepts, a trademark review, exploration of one of those concepts, and three rounds of revisions to the chosen concept, plus unlimited follow up for 30 days, a presentation to help you launch the logo to your organization, and a customized style guide to help you manage your new intellectual property. Sure, the second consultant “costs” more up front, but the value and cost savings from the solution are tremendous.
 
So, when looking at average consultant rates, ask yourself: is this an average consultant? If you’re hiring a consultant, do you want average results? If you are a consultant, do you provide average results? Look at the value of the solution, not the dollar amount.
 

Related to average consultant rates

 
Rob Linn says:

I agree with your point of view completely. Average consulting rates are dismal. In fact, even rates that the data say are “premium level” are not too exciting either!

My point of view is that you will only get the fees that you BELIEVE you deserve to get.

The biggest issue regarding true premium fees is how you think about yourself, not your niche or your competitors. In fact, it’s even more important in my experience than how you assess the value of your service.

In our work helping other consultants grow their businesses we ask them to try this simple exercise:

o Imagine you are sitting in front of a prospective client. They ask you what your fees are. What hourly rate or project fee would you be comfortable telling them? Got it? Feel pretty comfortable with it? Ready to tell the imaginary client? STOP! Double it! Now tell the client.

Too many consultants sell themselves short. My business partner, Rich Ottaviano, and I were at a conference for management consultants a while back. One of the presentations was about current fee levels in the industry. The top rate was hundreds of dollars an hour less than we charge. We were disappointed in our consulting brethren. But, the data reinforce what I’ve seen for 25 years in the business; most consultants operate from a position of weakness.

Any consultant can make the switch to operating from a position of strength. We share a lot of tips on how to do this in our blog.