Becoming a better tutor: Part 8 – How much is your time worth?
A major problem that I see a lot of tutors struggle with is pricing. It seems like the most straightforward part of the entire process, but it can really make or break your tutoring experience. In this article, we’ll go over some common mistakes that I see a lot of tutors fall into when they are deciding how much their time is really worth. How can you find a perfect price that works for as many students as possible? Stayed tuned!
I see a lot of new tutors seriously underselling themselves. When a new tutor enters the market, they tend to immediately drop their prices below any other competitors. They are desperate for work, and sometimes it works the wrong way. Would a parent really trust their children to be in quality hands if it only costs them $15 an hour? In the tutoring industry, price is often associated with quality. On the other end of the spectrum, it can fill up a tutor’s entire roster with interested students. Unfortunately, seriously low prices also end up in under preparation on the tutor’s end. Many tutors end up under-preparing and under-performing in these lessons, leading to dissatisfied students and missed opportunities to improve your tutoring style.
Some tutors get a bit too cocky with their skills. Pricing unreasonably high can lead to expectations that most inexperienced tutors aren’t able to satisfy. It’s even worse if you’re new to tutoring. Tutoring relies heavily on your experience as much as your knowledge. By pricing yourself too high, you’re going to get less students, and fewer opportunities to truly increase your experience within the field.
Forgetting the external costs
The hour you spend with a student isn’t the only thing that you’re basing your pricing on. There is so much more than that. For a truly good lesson, you want to spend at least fifteen to twenty minutes preparing and revising the content that you’ll be teaching in that lesson. Factor in any transport costs and time, and you might be looking at something closer to an hour and a half of your time for every billed hour. Make sure you remember that when you’re setting your price. How far are you travelling? Are the concepts hard, and are you going to have to spend time revising them before a lesson? Is the student an exceptional case? Will you need to spend more time crafting a specific lesson plan for this student?
Remember all these points, and next article we’ll discuss how to truly find the perfect price for your time!