The Nine Principles of Setting Fees | How To Calculate Your Coaching Fees

After working with tons of coaches, I put this together to help coaches. These nine principles will help you get comfortable with your rate.

Toku McCree


Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

Principle 1 — All fees are made up. While they may be referenced by other fees, types of value, and what we consider affordable they are still basically just made up.

Principle 2 — Fees are more related to the level of commitment than they are the level of value. Even though we tend to think that we’ll pay more for something that is more valuable, that value is always referenced related to what we’re committed to in our lives.

Principle 3 — You can charge whatever you want so long as you can enroll someone at that level of commitment.

Principle 4 — There are no groups of people out there for which creating commitment is inherently easier. While some people’s context of affordability, experience investing in coaching, and funding sources are different, creating true, deep, and lasting commitment requires effort for both the coach and the client.

Principle 5 — Commitment and/or investment that comes easily and without examination is almost always based on attraction, projection, and pedestal-izing or guru-izing of the coach. Which is a shaky foundation for transformation at best and tends to disempower the client over time.

Principle 6 — You can almost always charge more than you think you can if you are willing to stand more powerfully and lovingly for your client’s possibility, do the work on your own being, and practice being truly unattached to the outcome.

Principle 7 — To you, your fee is your rent, to your client your fee is their rent, vacation, future investments, etc. Your fee has less to do with you than you could ever realize and way more to do with your client’s belief in themselves and how present they are to their own possibility.

Principle 8 — While coaching fees certainly have an impact on how accessible your services will be to people from a certain socioeconomic status, they are still essentially amoral. It’s almost always better to discount or offer scholarships to people of color or people with fewer resources than it is to charge less in an attempt to be a ‘good person.’ There are almost always better ways to support people from diverse backgrounds than making less money.

Principle 9 — The conversation you have with your client around money and their willingness and desire to commit is actually the conversation that will change their life. Rather than money ‘tainting things’ it tends to clarify what people are really willing to put on the line and what they are really afraid of. This conversation may be the most important one you ever have with this person: be present, and serve them.



Toku McCree

Executive coach and writer. I’ve toured with rock bands, trained as a zen monk, and taught preschool. My hope is that my writing makes you think.