For employees, the only way to earn more money than they are already earning is to either get a promotion or get a raise. Most of the time, asking for a raise is more likely than getting promoted, so we end up battling within ourselves whether it’s time to approach our boss, or if we should just keep our mouth shut.
If you feel that you’ve been serving in your company for some time, and you’ve done a good job while you’re at it, then asking for a raise is certainly reasonable. The only problem with that is getting the confidence to do it. After all, it isn’t easy to battle with nerves, discomfort, and the possibility of getting shot down. Below are some tips to help you get the raise that you deserve.
- Understand Your Chances – Before even asking your boss for that raise, you have to bear in mind what are your chances in actually getting one. The difficulty of this is that since you’ve already had a previous salary agreement, your boss assumes you’re satisfied with your current salary. In general, getting a pay raise can be difficult to achieve unless you have some form of leverage. This leverage can be either having another job offer or doing more than your job description consistently.
One tactic of employers is to say that the business is over the annual budget already to try and deter you from asking. However, a “star employee” will naturally be offered more by a company just to keep them satisfied. Also, remember to be realistic. During recession periods, companies are struggling to keep their feet on the ground. They will most likely not be able to give you a raise. Finally, be careful about using another job offer as a way to get your company to pay you more. Employers might just call you on that, so you must truly have another offer in store or else you might end up without a job.
- Be assertive – Although it may be difficult to get a pay raise, it’s important not to psych yourself out. Most people, especially women, are afraid to ask for a raise because they might appear too demanding or pushy. All you need to do is approach your boss while being assertive (not aggressive!), and presenting why you are deserving of a raise. The worst that can happen is that your boss can refuse, and you still end up having the same salary as you used to. On the other hand, your boss just might agree, helping you earn extra money you otherwise would not have.
- Know Company Policy – Asking for a raise can also be a form of negotiation. In negotiating, it’s always important to prepare. One way you can prepare yourself is by familiarizing your company’s policies regarding salary determination. Perhaps annual performance reviews are required. Or someone else is assigned to make decisions. Knowing this information can give you the upper hand when negotiating with your boss.
- Show Them What You’re Worth – It’s not enough to go straight to your boss and enumerate the things that you’ve done for the company. You have to be objective about showing your boss what you’re worth. You can do this by finding out how much others are being paid at the same position as yours in the same industry. Know what these people are doing, and assess if you are doing more. Take into account your job description, responsibilities, years of experience and service, and education. This tactic is used to show your boss how invaluable you are to the company, but this should not be the primary reason why you want a pay raise.
- Prepare Your Case – This is where you go deeper into the contributions that you’ve made for the company. One of the most effective things you can do is by showing your employer how business operations and profits have risen due to your efforts. If you can show them that you’re doing more than what is expected of you, it should be difficult for them to turn you down. Aside from raising profits, you can also demonstrate how well you handle your team.
- Be Patient But Persistent – There’s a saying that goes “Patient persuasion can break down the strongest resistance”. Even if your boss says no initially, your desire to get a raise is already out in the open. This can get your boss concerned about the chances that you might look elsewhere for better work. Ask again for the raise again within a few months time.
Asking for a raise can be a daunting experience and may require a lot of confidence on your part. Just don’t forget that there really is nothing to lose if you ask for a raise, but there is a lot to be gained. The process can also help you realize if you yourself feel that your performance is worthy of garnering a higher salary.
So, have you successfully gotten a raise that you asked for? What tactics did you use?
This post was written by YFS.