Rates for independent consultants

Rates for independent consultants can be one of the most important elements to understand as a consultant. How do you set rates for independent consultants? What are other consultants in your field charging? How can you justify a high rate? Should you negotiate your rate? How much is too much–or too little? What strategy should you use to calculate rates for independent consultants?

Questions abound when it comes to setting rates for independent consultants. And setting appropriate independent consultant rates can make the difference between struggle and success as a consultant.

There are numerous types of consultants, and the procedure for setting rates for independent consultants can differ depending on the type of service you provide. For example, a fitness consultant and a jury consultant may use different strategies to calculate rates–even though they may both be independent consultants.

Relatedly, different target markets can bear different consulting rate scales. For example, an IT consultant who targets new small businesses may have drastically different independent consultant rates than an IT consultant who targets Fortune 100 companies.

There are numerous strategies for setting rates for independent consultants, including:

  • multiplying your hourly wage
  • using a per diem rate
  • charging by project or performance
  • using real life data
  • using competitors’ rates

However, all of the above strategies for setting rates for independent consultants miss the most important piece: charging based on the perceived value that you provide.

Want to know more about how to set your own independent consultant rates using this strategy? Get practical tips and 124 pages on making money as a consultant! Check out my Consulting Fees: A Guide for Independent Consultants.

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