Can you suggest any “power questions” to use when a client asks for a discount?

You can, of course, simply say, "No, my work is fairly priced and I do not discount my fees." But a good power question can open up an interesting dialogue and allow you to learn more about what your client truly values. So instead of simply "No" you could ask: "I'm able to reduce my fee when we also reduce the scope and breadth of the project. Would you like me to put together an option to do that? Also, would you be willing to consider a long-term agreement with guaranteed volume levels?"

Here are a few other examples of difficult situations and power questions that can help you navigate them:

  • Client: "What do you think you can do for us?"
  • You: "I really don't know yet. Can you share with me what your goals are this year, and your key programs to accomplish them? Once I get to know your priorities better I will be in a position to suggest ways I could help."
  • Client: "Can you tell us about your firm?"
  • You: "What aspects of our firm would you be most interested in hearing about?"
  • Client: "We simply have no need for this right now."
  • You: "You'd be surprised how many of my best clients said the exact same thing when we first met. Can I ask you question? (Then ask a question, appropriate for that client's company and business, about where they wish they were moving faster, where they would start reinvesting once business picks up, and so on).
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