The subject of money can often be a difficult subject for people to discuss and the subject of when and how to ask for a raise involves a few steps to help ensure that your request is taken seriously. In this article, we’ll discuss basic recommendations for how to ask for a raise to help your discussions come across professionally and with the best odds for success.
The single most reason that most requests for a pay increase fall flat is due to a lack of planning and preparation. Backing up your request with concrete facts and understanding how you will articulate your case are both key to getting the pay raise that you want. You need to begin planning for your request before actually sitting down with your manager for discussions.
Building Your Case
So what do you need to do to be prepared and to plan properly? For starters, you need to be able to list your recent accomplishments in the workplace as well as how they are providing value to your employer. If you plan to ask for more money, you should be confident going into the discussions that you merit this increase and you should be able to thoroughly articulate why you feel you are deserving of more pay. List your accomplishments on paper and think about the ways that you can frame these during your talks to illustrate how they have added to the efficiency or productivity of your company or department.
Do Your Homework
Another area which is often overlooked when planning on how to ask for a raise is the subject of pay comparison. Salary Explorer is a great resource to help you find medial pay figures for your particular career field. You also need to find out what comparable pay rates are in your geographical area for employees with a similar level of experience to yours. By knowing what the “going rate” is for an employee of your caliber in your given field, you will have some framework on which to base your requested increase. Think about it for a moment: if you’re asking to be paid much more than other employees with your skills in a comparable position, your employer is going to take a dim view of this. You need to make a reasonable request that is in line with what the industry is paying in your area.
During any type of salary or compensation discussion, it is imperative that you keep the level of professionalism high at all times. When you’re planning when and how to ask for a raise, you also need to begin thinking about what your backup plan will be in the event that you are turned down. You should never, ever threaten to leave your job in the event that you are denied your request for a raise. However, by thinking through the scenario of being rejected for a pay increase, you can also be emotionally prepared to remain calm and confident throughout the discussions. You may very well know in the back of your mind that if you are denied your request, that you will plan to seek employment elsewhere to obtain the income level that you need, but during these discussions with your boss is not the time to voice this plan.
Through proper planning, preparation, and good communication, you can come across as a professional employee with reasonable expectations during these talks. Knowing when and how to ask for a raise are key to going into these talks with the best chance of a favorable outcome on your side.