Almost everyone wishes their salaries were higher. With a bigger salary, a person can more easily pay for necessities, resolve debts, care for family, and save for retirement.
Many workers deserve higher salaries, although it might be difficult to convince their boss of that fact. Asking for a raise can fill even the deserving with trepidation and anxiety.
However, raising the raise conversation can be rewarding, and in more than just the monetary sense. Workers who feel their company pays them what they deserve are more likely to be happy, both with their job and with themselves.
If you think you’re underpaid, check out the following four tips for asking for a higher salary.
1. Explain your value
In simplest terms, a raise signifies the recognition that you are worth more to the company now than you were when you started. Be prepared to talk up your accomplishments since your last raise. Discuss the projects and teams you’ve worked on, explaining in each case exactly what you did to push the company forward. To avoid coming across as a bragging blowhard,tie all your claims to concrete facts. For example, quoting someone else’s positive assessment of your work is much better than simply asserting you did a good job.
2. Consider your boss’s personality
Whether or not a particular negotiating tactic will work depends largely on who you’re working for. For example, it can be risky to ask for more than you deserve, in hopes that a compromise will result in the raise you want. Some managers will stop taking you seriously if the first figure you mention is outlandish, but others may respond quite differently. Similarly, saying you’ll quit if you don’t get the increase you’re asking for could work brilliantly — or it could be a disaster that leaves you without a job at all, much less a raise. Sometimes bringing up the matter of a raise directly might be the right method, but with other bosses a more circumspect approach is better. The key is to pay attention to how your boss operates, and use this information to tailor your approach.
3 Time it right
Asking for a raise at the wrong time of the year will guarantee your request will be rejected. If there’s no money available, even a willing boss will have to turn you down. Make sure you know when your company decides the budget for the next year, since that’s when funds will be set aside for salary increases. While many workers think their annual performance review is the best time to bring up the salary issue, that’s often not the case. A more proactive approach is likely to payoff.
4. And of course, figure out how much to ask for!
Determining the size of the raise you’ll be requesting is as important as any other aspect of salary negotiation.