Articles for ELC Members

The Value Proposition

Your retention by prospective clients depends greatly on how well you establish your value proposition. Failure to do so means you will be less successful in signing up clients. It’s as simple as that.

What do I mean by a value proposition? In a nutshell, it’s the ability to establish the following:

  • The jeopardy of the clients’ current situation and the consequences of doing nothing;
  • That you have solutions that will solve the problem;
  • The significant value that they will receive by retaining you.

In talking with prospective clients, as has been counseled at our classes, you should only discuss the amount of your fee after you have established your value proposition. In most cases, only then will prospective clients be convinced to retain you.

As a simple example of what I am saying, assume you are contacted by a married couple who have accumulated assets of $400,000 during their lifetime. The reason they are seeing you is that the husband has had a stroke and is in a nursing home. On average, a nursing home today costs about $96,000 per year or $8000 per month. Therefore, the consequences of doing nothing are that the nursing home fees would exhaust the entire estate of $400,000 in 4 years, leaving them penniless.

However, if you are able to design a plan whereby you could preserve all of those assets while qualifying the husband for medicaid, wouldn’t that establish the value of your services, and justify a fee at least equal to the cost of one month in the nursing home?

Congratulations. You have successfully established the value proposition. You’re retained!

Bob Henderson, Principal
Elder Law College

Principal and Lead Instructor Scott Solkoff is a member of the above assocations.


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