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Just 3 months into my business I attended the yearly AssistU community weekend – lovingly called “Homecoming” – and Business Retreat held by Anastacia Brice. Much amazing bonding and camaraderie happened that weekend in my VA community; I was in awe! During the retreat we did a re-calculation of our fees. And good thing we did because I found out I wasn’t profitable! I was terrified! How could I get my rate up to a profitable level with two brand-new clients whom I had only worked with for a month?

Of course, profitable means something different for every entrepreneur. Let’s face it, as business owners we don’t receive social benefits, or vacation pay, or a brand-new computer/printer when the old ones wear out. And what about office furniture, advertising, marketing, website cost, telephone, postage, business travel, etc? And let’s not forget business insurance and vacation! All of these have to be built into our fee … and we definitely want to make money!

I’ve seen, and heard, people talking about blogs and comments that price fees for Virtual Assistants from the $20/hour range and up. I tell you, no business owner can make money when charging $20.00. What do you think that the actual net income per hour is with this rate? I bet it’s around zero or even in the negatives. And will any VA on this “income” enjoy her work and do her best?

That weekend I asked Anastacia how I should deal with my clients. Her response: Tell them that you’re not profitable. They are business owners and will understand.

With a sinking heart, I connected with each of my clients. To my utter amazement none had a problem with me raising my fees by a whopping 15% six weeks into the working relationship.

What are you willing to pay your trusted Virtual Assistant who looks after all your administrative business tasks?