June 28, 2017

Squirrel eviction day

Today was squirrel eviction day.

You might be interested to know that the process of installing a one-way door and a mushroom vent over the squirrel holes in our rodent infested garage took about 45 minutes.

If you add in the initial 15 minute inspection, the entire job took about an hour.

In exchange, I wrote the squirrel guy two checks for a total of $1190. If you subtract a generous $40 for the materials - essentially a few feet of chicken wire and some caulk - you wind up with an effective hourly rate of $1150.

This situation is a great example of how leading with an hourly rate pushes the buying decision into the wrong place in the buyer’s mind.

Imagine if when I had first called wildlife services, they had told me that they charged $1150 per hour to get squirrels out of a garage. I probably would’ve hung up on them.

Instead, they charged me $55 for an initial inspection and then quoted me a fixed price ($1135) for the work. They never told me how long it would take and I never asked.

The fact of the matter is, I didn’t care how long it would take them. The faster the squirrels were gone, the better.

The moral of the story:

Hourly billing forces the client to think about how long it is going to take you to execute a bunch of activities.

This creates a “race to zero” dynamic because they see you as a cost to be minimized.

This blinds them to the value of the outcomes you intend to deliver.


Focus on outcomes if you want your profitability to increase.



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