If you want to earn more money you have two choices: look for another job, or buck up the courage to ask for a pay rise. However, no matter how desperately you need the pay rise or how much you think you deserve it, there are few things you need to consider before knocking on your boss’ door. Think these things through before you do that and you will greatly increase your chances of getting a positive result.
1.Why do you deserve it?
It is not about why you need the pay rise, it is about why you deserve it. As sympathetic as your manager might be to your situation, it is not really his or her responsibility. For it to make financial sense to give you a pay rise there needs to be a benefit for the business. Unless you can articulate that, it’s unlikely your boss will be able to either.
2.What are you worth?
Take the time to sit down and write down your unique skills and attributes. Then once you have your list write down how each one might benefit the company. Research what similar positions are paying in the industry. You might find you are already on par and unless you can substantiate a raise, your chances may be slim.
3.Don’t ambush your boss
Understand that what you are asking for is significant. Don’t ambush your boss in front of other employees with your request. You will just end up embarrassing your boss or yourself. Don’t spring your request on them when they are in the middle of something else. In some companies it’s best to make an appointment. If you have been at the company for a while you will know if it’s best to approach them first thing in the morning or after work. In addition, it’s unlikely they will be able to give you an answer right away, so be prepared for that.
4.Think about your timing
Look at the bigger picture in the business. Have you just had a bumper year or are things a bit tight? Is the company losing or gaining market share? If the company is not performing well then your chances of getting a pay rise are slim. However, if the company is doing well and you can demonstrate what your contribution was, then you stand a much better chance.
5.Learn the art of negotiation
You may not get a yes right away, that doesn’t necessarily mean that getting a pay rise isn’t a possibility. Consider the boundaries in which you are willing to negotiate and be prepared to do just that. You may not achieve the full pay rise you were after, but you may still end up with more than you are getting now.
Most staff have to pay their dues before expecting a pay rise. You can’t start in a new company and expect to immediately get promoted. Be realistic not only about your skills and position in the company but also about industry trends. If the market is growing your chances are better compared to if the market is in decline. Understand what a realistic expectation is and be prepared to accept that. You may not get that pay rise now, but it could be in the pipeline if you prove to be a loyal, motivated and diligent employee.
7.Have a back-up plan
What will you do if your request gets rejected outright and you realise that you no longer want to stay where you are? Quitting on the spot may be risky, so have a back up plan. If you have another offer from another company it gives you a stronger negotiating position. Then if your request gets rejected, you also have a back up plan.
Working through these 7 things can help you be better prepared in facing your boss and can give you the confidence to voice your request. Remember, there is no sure way to know how it is going to be received, but if you don’t ask, you will never know. So be prepared, put your best foot forward and ask. You just might get exactly what you are after.