When does adding value tip over into working for free?
That's the question I've been asking myself for the past few weeks as I've watched a business friend of mine put in hour after hour of extra work on a customer's project, to the point that they might as well be on the payroll.
For new service businesses this can be a real issue - you know that you will be judged on the value that you add, so you do what you probably did as an employee...see a job that needs doing and get on and do it, without asking the client, without thinking of the consequences...you want your customer to succeed, and you're simply adding value...right? But where's the balance?
It's a problem that is often borne out of having too few customers, and therefore having this perception of 'spare time'.
But that time could be spent on developing your business, on fine-tuning your products, on finding new customers. The consequences of spending it on additional non-paying work for your existing customer, can be significant for you and them.
For your customer it could mean:
For you it could mean:
For your business it could mean:
At the end of the day, there has to be a balance...and you are worth so much more than free!
For more information on how MPL can help you visit www.mariannepage.co.uk or contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org
Marianne is the author of three books, and is currently working on her fourth, whilst regularly writing her blog, we hope you enjoy it :-)