Negotiating financial discussions with clients is rarely fun, and often fraught with difficulty. I tend to overthink how I phrase these kinds of interactions.
Recently I had a conversation with a production artist who is interested in doing work for my firm. When I inquired about his rates, his response was:
“My hourly rate in $xx-$xx depending upon the nature/difficulty of the work and the client’s budget. I’m flexible and see it as a friendly discussion arriving at a fair rate on a project by project basis.”
Obviously not every situation will allow for this kind of flexibility, but I thought this was a great response which invited further discussion and immediately put me at ease. Note the use of the words ‘fair’, ‘friendly’ and ‘flexible’, which tells me that I am dealing with someone with integrity. In the future I will try to incorporate them into discussions with my own clients.
Would this approach work for you?