5 Useful Tips When Asking for a Raise

Image courtesy of Philip Taylor's photostream

Image courtesy of Philip Taylor’s photostream

Do you feel like you should be earning more money?  Are other people in similar roles earning more than you?  Has it been more than 12 months without a performance increase?  Here are some tips to ask your Supervisor for a raise.

1.    Schedule a time to meet with your supervisor
The big question is whether you should indicate what you want to talk about or not.  Only you know the culture of your organization and the relationship you have with your supervisor.  Disclosing why you want to meet allows your supervisor extra time to come up with objections.  However, my approach is to always disclose why I want to meet.

Ask your supervisor, “I would like to schedule a time to discuss my compensation. I have increased my responsibility over the past {insert time frame since your last increase} and would like my salary to be reflective of these responsibilities.”

2.    If your Supervisor says no to a meeting, you do not have to take no for an answer
After asking your supervisor for a meeting, if they object that no increases are available, push back that you would still like to meet to discuss your performance.

Try, “I understand that increases might not be available right now but I would still like to schedule time with you to discuss my increased responsibilities and the results I have achieved.”  This is a soft way of letting your Supervisor know that you are not going away.

3.    If your Supervisor says yes to a meeting, come prepared
Right now you should be keeping a file, whether it is electronic or paper, of your accomplishments.  Keep compliments from customers, evidence of cost savings, tasks you volunteered for, and projects that were wildly successful.  It may also be helpful to track projects that did not go as planned but that you still produced results.  Bring this documentation in a concise format to share during your meeting.

If you have not been keeping track, I recommend holding off on scheduling your meeting until you can come prepared.

Keep the focus on the value you add to the company.  Avoid bringing up any personal reasons you need the increase such as paying off debt, a sick family member, or other increased expenses.

4.    Ask for what you want
Be realistic but do not be afraid to request a particular dollar amount or percentage.  Keep in mind that compensation does not always have to come in the form of money.  Do you use your cell phone for your job?  Request compensation for your bill.  You may also be able to negotiate for additional time off, a flexible work schedule, a new title, or reimbursement for training.

5.    Follow up regardless of the result
If you are granted an increase, follow up with a written thank you to your Supervisor.  If appropriate, you may also ask if it would be ok to thank your Supervisors, Supervisor.  Increases are a private matter so avoid talking about it with your co-workers or posting to Social Media.

If you are not granted an increase, ask what you can do to earn an increase in the future and when it would be appropriate to ask again.  Set your calendar for that date and do indeed follow up.
I hope these tips help you earn the compensation you deserve.

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