How To Ask For A Raise

How do you ask for a raise? This is a common thought on nearly every employee’s mind. No matter how much you make, you will always want more. So, how does one approach the matter without being all stressed out? If you're the right kind of employee that has been adding value and contributing to the company, your chances will be higher. If you doubt your own contribution, the process below should allow you a chance to self evaluate your own contributions and gauge if you should be asking for a pay raise. There are quite a bit of information you need to prepare and research before you make the final approach to your boss. Here is how you can prepare asking for a pay raise:

What’s The Market Rate?

To begin, you need to know the market rate for someone in your position. Research with professional organizations - they sometimes publish salary ranges for each designation and rank. Headhunters are good sources of information on salary ranges. Some even publish salary rates. Another source of such information are friends in the industry. Once you know the market rate for someone in your position, you will have a clearer case if you have a case.

How Do You Fit In?

So, how do you fit in with the salary range you've found out? Make sure that the pay range reflects the years of experience, skills and size of company you're currently working. You want to be able to compare like for like as much as possible. Where do you fit in this range? Are you at the bottom to middle tier but based on your objective opinion you deserve to be on a higher tier within this salary range? Now that you know the market rate and how you fare in comparison to the industry, timing will be very important for asking for a pay raise.

How's The Company Doing?

How is your company doing? Needless to say if your company is not doing too well financially, your chances are near zero if you were to asking for a pay raise. On the other hand, if your company has just recently secured a huge contract and your role is going to be increasingly important then you may be in for a good case. Besides the company’s financial situation, consider other factors like staff morale, office politics especially if there are camps opposing each other and how you fit in.

Prepare Your Case

Literally, prepare your pay raise script. What are you going to say? You may not read straight from your ‘script’ or case. But have it written as it helps you clarify your thoughts. When you see it in words you can see your arguments better. No matter how you prepare your case in your head, you're likely to forget. Especially, if your boss is good at handling people asking for a pay raise, he will have a set of statements he uses to diffuse people from their request. Think about all your contribution in the past year. What have you done that is significant and especially measurable? What accomplishments, additional initiatives you took, contributions in the form of suggestions that has been implemented that worked? What I found most effective is if you can peg this argument to the key performance indicators (KPI) you've set during your yearly evaluation. That's the best measure that you've more than delivered.

Action Standard... What Will You Do?

Having prepared your case, you need to be prepared for all eventualities. What is your goal in this discussion? Write this in your preparation above also. In a case, your boss agrees to a lesser figure, what will you do? In a case, your boss gives you more benefits in lieu of salary? Or in the worst case scenario, if your boss turns you down, what would you do?

1. Review The Company Policy

Take into consideration company policies when it comes to salary review. Most companies have a budget set aside for this every year and a set period when this is given even though exceptions are made for special cases.

2. Set A Meeting

I recommend face to face meetings, no matter how tough it seems to be. If you're asking for a pay raise and it's important enough for you then be ready to face your boss. Be professional about the matter. Ask your boss for an appointment, but do not mention it's for a pay raise. Just say that it's for a personal matter and you need to discuss with him.

3. Prepare For Objections

No matter how close you're with your boss, prepare for objections. Objections can come in very subtle manners. Remember, bosses are used to people asking for pay raise. Know to handle the objections when they come up. Run through these with a friend. What are some of the things your boss can say to turn you down?

Whatever Happens...

Avoid saying why you need the money. Pay raises are given when you do great work. Not when you need money for such and such. Bosses do not evaluate salary increases like that. One of my bosses once told me, "You're paid to do good work; you deserve a raise if you do excellent work." How true. Be mature and professional in your meeting. In all likelihood, you still want to work in the company and you just want an increase in salary. Do so, professionally and be mature about it. Perhaps it is not the right time for your boss to consider it. There maybe things you've missed out that you do not know. Your boss may explain to you then, listen carefully and be objective. Don’t threaten to leave even if that is the plan. You can still resign with dignity later if you have a good meeting. You do not want your company to perceive you as being selfish and not putting your 100% at work just because you did not get the raise prior to you leaving. Asking for a pay raise need not be daunting. Do your research and prepare your case and have a professional meeting. You may just get what you ask. Enjoy this article? You've got time for another! Check out these related articles: Photo Credit: Shutterstock

When most people think of Nike, they think of shoes, retail stores, and, of course, athletes. That's all true, but there's more. Behind Nike's walls, you'll find the doers and thinkers who design, create, and innovate every day. There are also data scientists who discover and leverage athlete insights to create the future of sport.

You might be surprised to learn about the impact you can have in Data & Analytics at Nike versus at a major tech giant. Nike employees get to work on a wide array of challenges, so if you're obsessed with math, science, computers, and/or data, and you love sport, these stories may inspire you to work at Nike.

SHOW MORE Show less

Employee loyalty is something every company longs for. It's estimated employee turnover costs as much as 130-200% of an employee's salary. When a talented, knowledgeable, trained employee leaves, it's bad for business. And, when lots of them leave, it can be the kiss of death.

SHOW MORE Show less

If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the interview situation one of our viewers, Remi submitted. He was in an interview and was asked the question: How many cows are there in Canada right now? - What a weird question but this is a technique that some hiring managers are using these days.

SHOW MORE Show less

If you saw our first video, you might have heard about the awkward situation one of our viewers, Kevin submitted. He is a college student who's working a part time job to make ends meet. The manager/owner of the company has become a micro-manager who watches him work on camera and reads his company emails. A bit over the top wouldn't you say?

SHOW MORE Show less

All work and no play can create a tense and unwelcoming environment. Studies have shown that employers that offer additional perks have employees that are happier and more loyal to their place of employment. If you are looking for an employer that acknowledges how important it is to give its employees a place to de-stress and bond with their co-workers, check out these companies!

SHOW MORE Show less

In this week's episode of "Well This Happened", we want to know what you would do if you worked for an owner who micro-manages you my watching you work on camera and reading through your company emails.

We want YOU to be the career coach and tell us which one is the RIGHT answer!

Think you know? Vote below, and stay tuned for later this week when we announce the right answer (and why the other ones are wrong).

SHOW MORE Show less