The Do’s and Don’ts of Asking for a Raise


Touchy subject, money, even just talking with friends. And with the boss? Most of us don’t dare go there. The thing is, what you make might not be equal to what you do. So, no harm in asking, right? Well, wrong. There’s definitely a way to go about it. And ways you definitely don’t.

Your Research. You’ve got to prove your case and it all comes down to numbers, what you think you’re worth versus what the boss thinks you’re worth. Look online for the average salaries of comparable jobs in your area, and look at your own performance. Are you just doing your job, or going above and beyond? Demonstrate your value to the bottom line.

Be Positive. Approach it like a job interview. Let the boss know in advance what you want to talk about. Request an appointment. Be on time, be at your professional best and sell yourself. Because what the boss really wants to know is: Are you a good investment?

Push It. Remember, you’re asking here. Politeness counts. Making demands, cornering the boss on the elevator. Bitching, moaning. Get all pushy like that, and expect some serious push back. Maybe even a swift push out the door.

Rush It. This calls for some deep thinking. Why do you honestly deserve a raise? Got some big bills to pay? Sorry, don’t we all. The only reason to ask is because you legitimately deserve more for your work. And when you ask, timing really is everything. How’s the company doing? Sales down or, shudder, heard rumors of layoffs? Eh, you may want to wait.

Now, be prepared for the boss to say no. That’s okay. You asked, and you’ll never know if you don’t. Good luck!

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