Carolyn, As You Like It Consulting
Pros: I am making less money per hour here than I did in Seattle, but when I moved here, I did a market survey and put my rate at the exact median of what other people who were providing a similar service charged. I intend to raise my rates as soon as I feel I am established here.
Cons: I am not making enough money to live on at this point in time.
Greatest challenges: Keeping positive about what you do. Looking for new opportunities all the time. Being totally flexible.
Approaches to meet the challenges: I give lots of free talks to organizations where I think there may be potential clients. I teach at Cuesta because it’s good exposure and I enjoy it.
Mike, On The Same Page Technical Communications
Pros: Not dependent on a fixed salary; can give yourself a “raise”.
Cons: Rates and fees MUST remain reasonable (this is dynamic, not static and depends upon the market).
Greatest challenges: Avoiding “sticker shock” but maintaining fees that exemplify the “worth” of your service.
Approaches to meet the challenges: Study the market (others who do the same type of work); abide by “industry standards”; that is, a certain $ per page/per hour/per document; educate the client on the value of your service.