QLD Article

Negotiating a Price Increase

As an industry, we are all facing cost pressures. Quality staff are asking for wage rises to keep up with cost of living, premises rents are facing pressure and the costs of everyday office supplies and utilities cost keep exploding. As much as you might love the work you do, it is extremely unlikely you’re going to be willing to do it for free. You need to be profitable to keep your doors open.


When costs go up, you have few options but to pass that on. On the other side of that coin is the simple fact that no one likes to see their bills go up – the receiver of this bad news is also inevitably facing similar costs pressures to you. But the conversation has to be had and managing it is important to ensure you retain business whilst receiving fair compensation for your services.


Some useful tips from psychologists around these matters include.

  1. At the outset, make the first move when tendering. State your ideal price for your services openly to a scheme. Studies indicate that in a negotiated price, the ultimate price paid is inevitably closer to the first offer than the counteroffer. So be bold and forthright.

  2. Another important point is to have a clear redline, know where you are willing to go and at what point you’re willing to walk away.

  3. Remember to maintain a collaborative stance, you’re not there to win or lose, you’re there to explain your value to your client and how partnering together is best for both the scheme and your business.

  4. Defend yourself. You should believe strongly that you are delivering fair value for your price. Explain that to clients or potential clients with conviction.

  5. Speak clearly. Being ambiguous in your language indicates that you are lowballing your value. Do not use words like “between” or “potentially” be clear in your offers and what you are offering.

  6. Bring clients back to facts. Take the emotion out of it. There is a cost to service delivery, explain this to clients.

  7. Be on your guard right until a contract is signed. Things are up in the air until you formalise your agreement, always keep this in mind.


SCA (Qld) has prepared a series of resources and articles to assist our members with these conversations and arm you with as much information as we can to support you.


You can find them here in our members centre.