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Why I Charge for Advice

Emma Tekstra > Corporate HR  > Why I Charge for Advice

Why I Charge for Advice

I’m a people pleaser. More accurately, I obsess about fixing your problem. Whether it’s a personal problem like a nagging health issue, or a business problem like reducing healthcare costs or expanding around the world. I can’t help myself; it’s part of my DNA. 

I’m also the bread-winner in my family. For 30 years I had a corporate job with amazing benefits and never had to worry about money. Yes it was the kind of job that meant 5am conference calls and weekends travelling to far flung places but I didn’t worry about paying the mortgage or if the activity my kid wanted to do with his friends was in the budget. My husband works very hard – he’s the most talented architect you will ever meet. But he has a similar disease to me in that every house he works on becomes his personal dream home so he spends far more hours making it amazing and perfect than he ever gets paid for. Each house is a labor of love for him and he only takes on one or two new projects a year.   

I left my corporate job when it became too difficult to provide the advice actually supported by the evidence. In addition to being a people pleaser I’m a data geek you see. I don’t come up with opinions, I analyze the available information and the experience I have amassed over many years working with organizations all over the world, to provide robust recommendations.

In my corporate role I gave a lot of free advice. To colleagues in other parts of the business, to vendors and start-up companies wanting to work with our clients, to potential clients testing out whether I was a good fit for their needs. But now with my own business, every hour I don’t get paid affects the food on my table.

I still want you to be able to test whether I am a good fit for your business, plus I want to be able to help as many people as possible. So I have low cost ways to get started. Firstly, you can read my book. Available everywhere good books are sold. It is sort of my manifesto on the healthcare industry, written to individuals but with an appendix for HR Managers and corporate sponsors of health plans. Secondly, I have a number of off-the-shelf courses available covering topics such as corporate wellness, the group benefit market, going global, and addressing rising healthcare costs. I provide a lot of advice and resources in these courses. Once you sign-up in my online Learning Center you have unlimited access to the materials and can email me questions as you go along. Even if we end up working one on one tailored to your specific situation, I might recommend you work through a course first as helpful background information.  

If you think we are a good fit then let’s have a chat. If I take you on as a client you will have access to my weirdly encyclopedic brain of knowledge from 30 years of working with not only the most successful organizations in the world, but some of the smartest people on the planet. Although I left the corporate world to have more flexibility in the advice I am able to give, I have stayed in touch with all the wonderful people I met over the years and who I respect immensely. I meet new people everyday and continue to learn and to grow.

It is expensive to hire me. While I have fixed fee arrangements and lower cost retainers available, my basic hourly rate is high. This is because I need to prioritize my time. With my online Learning Center, another book in the works, and health feature articles I write for a major newspaper, my brain-power is limited. Any client I take on becomes almost like my own business with the level of commitment you’ll get from me. I won’t mince words. I’ll tell you how it is. Even if the answer is painful.

You’re going to be so successful in addressing whatever business challenge you want me to work on, that you won’t even notice my fees! We’re going to solve that challenge. I work fast and efficiently and will push you to do the same.

Paying me also means you’re more likely to follow my advice. I have provided hard truths to companies before (particularly entrepreneurs who have incredibly innovative ideas but tend to not be very good at following external advice) only because it was provided free, they took it with a pinch of salt. I don’t want that for you.

You need to invest to progress – I promise to be value for money.

Emma Tekstra
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