September 25, 2016

Can every type of project to be value priced?

People ask me all the time about whether certain types of projects can be value priced. Common examples are things like:

The answer is:

It depends.

The primary determinant for whether an engagement is a good fit for value pricing is the client’s level of clarity on their desired outcome.

If the client can’t clearly articulate their desired outcome, it’s going to be hard to value price the engagement.

That said, it’s quite common for clients to approach service providers without a clear picture of their desired outcome. Often, they present a list of deliverables that they presume will reach some desired goal, but that goal usually goes unstated.

Why don’t clients share their goals?

The goal may be so inherently obvious to the buyer that they don’t even think to share it.

Or the goal might be buried in the buyer’s subconscious.

Or the buyer thinks the goal is none of your business.

Or the person requesting the work might be doing so on behalf of a superior who did not share the actual goal.

First, do no harm

Whatever their reason, I consider it my moral obligation as a service provider to help my prospective client uncover and clearly articulate their desired outcome.

Without this information, there is no reason for me to believe that I can improve their condition.


Regardless of the type of engagement, it is possible to value price it once you have unearthed the client’s desired outcome.

Please note: I’m not saying you SHOULD value price everything. I’m just saying that if you know the desired outcome of a project you CAN value price it.

In an upcoming message, I’ll explain why I don’t value price everything I offer.