How to ask for a raise: 7 useful rules

Talking to a boss about a salary increase scares many. Suddenly they will refuse or, even worse, will be fired for arrogance! Don’t be afraid. Discussion of salaries is normal practice. Together with VTB , we have compiled several rules and tips that will help prepare for the conversation and increase the chances of a successful result.

1. Find the right time

Getting it right is one of the key elements of a successful salary conversation. A good time for such a conversation is autumn and winter: the company is forming a budget for the next year, so it will be easier to find extra funds to increase the salary and register them in expenses.

But there are other factors to consider:

  1. Make sure the company is doing well with its finances . If not long ago your colleagues were laid off or at a meeting they talked about low sales, then it is better to postpone.
  2. The manager is not drowned in tasks and is in a good mood . Probably the best time to find your boss in the right frame of mind is Friday morning.
  3. You are doing a great job at your job . If a month ago you seriously disrupted the deadline or made a problem with an error, then the salary, most likely, will not increase.

2. Collect evidence

A simple request for a raise will not be enough. Your boss will probably ask you to explain why you deserve a pay increase. It is important to prepare the arguments in advance and confirm them with specific examples, preferably with numbers. Good arguments for promotion would be:

  • plan overfulfilment;
  • expanding the list of responsibilities;
  • serious discrepancy between salaries and market offers;
  • successful cases and initiatives that have increased the company’s revenue or simplified work processes.

3. Don’t get emotional.

Pity, anger, and frustration at work are questionable arguments for a manager. They are more likely to cause resentment and make him reconsider his attitude towards you. Bad or questionable reasons for a pay rise also include:

  • Difficult personal circumstances , such as a mortgage or the birth of a child. An increase in personal expenses does not mean an increase in the value of your labor.
  • Great experience . Without proof of your contribution to the company’s success, this argument will likely not carry weight.
  • Raising a colleague’s salary . The leader can give strong reasons why he was worthy of a promotion, and you have not finished it yet. In addition, you will be written down as gossips or envious people, and this is not very good for your reputation.
  • Desire to do more . You will not be able to guarantee steep results in advance, and the boss, having increased the salary, will not be able to return it to its previous value for no reason. Therefore, first the case, then the talk about the promotion.

And you shouldn’t be blackmailed by dismissal. The chief will take such a statement with hostility, and maybe even issue a statement right away. Use this argument only if you already have a real offer from another company and you are thinking about moving there only because of the higher salary. Here, the manager can really agree to a salary increase in order to retain a valuable employee.

4. Determine the size of the raise

It is better to come to the boss with a specific proposal, this is will increase a chance for a successful result. But dreams need to be limited: asking for a double increase in salary or bonus part is too ambitious. But you can count on 10, 20 or 30%.

To determine the real figure, try to objectively assess your professional growth, contribution to the development of the company and the change in the volume of duties and workload compared to the moment when your current salary was set. It will also be useful to check the offers on the market: this way you will understand whether you are really getting less than other representatives of your profession and what kind of promotion you can think of.

5. Practice the conversation

Before meeting with your boss, you should prepare answers to any of his objections and questions, rehearse them in front of a mirror. This will help you not to be discouraged and not explode with emotions in case of refusal.

Prepare yourself for the main part of the conversation. It is worth starting right away with the designation of the topic, questions about current tasks or conversations on abstract topics can only tire the boss. Then list the arguments collected, at first you can not go into much detail – leave the numbers for answers to objections – and name the desired amount of the increase.

6. Don’t expect a miracle

No matter how much you would like to receive a raise in salary, it is impossible to guarantee a successful result. Therefore, you need to prepare yourself for rejection too. Do not tell your colleagues about your initiative before the conversation. Superfluous gossip is useless, plus one of them may think about their salary and get ahead of you. The chances of two employees getting a pay raise within one month will be less.

When talking to your boss, do not raise your tone, blackmail, or threaten with leaving, leaking information, or bad reviews on the Internet. Then you can calmly return to work and think about what to do next: continue to strive for promotion or start looking for a new place.

7. Find out what needs to be done to improve

Even if now the conversation ended in nothing, you can make use of it for yourself. Ask your manager what actions need to be taken and what results to show to increase the salary.

Write down the tips and tricks on paper and make an action plan that will help you achieve the desired result. And when you’ve achieved your goals, return to your boss with the evidence of growth you’ve collected and try your luck again. If this time you get a refusal, this is a reason to think about how realistic it is to get a promotion and whether it’s time to place an ad on a job search site.

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