Asking for a raise takes a lot of courage, but it isn’t impossible. If you plan ahead, do the necessary research and bring the topic up at the right time, it’s possible to increase your income.
Even so, things may backfire. To set you up for success, we’ve provided a list of four insights below.
1.) Consider the financial health of your employer. The last 14 months have been a roller coaster ride for many business owners. Local shutdowns, mask mandates and capacity limits have thrown many operations into turmoil.
In order to receive a raise, your company needs to be in good financial health. You might not have access to all of their accounting documents, but there are signs to watch out for. For example, is human resources actively recruiting or are they asking current employees to take on additional work? Will the company be hosting its annual summer picnic or have they cut back on all unnecessary expenses? The answers to these questions can help you determine if now is the right time to talk with your boss about increasing compensation.
2.) Research the competition. You’re more likely to get a raise if you can prove your value to management. Before speaking with your boss, research the salary and benefits of similar positions at other companies. If you have the same education, skills and capabilities but are making significantly less, you may qualify. That said, it’s important to keep your expectations realistic. Companies rarely increase a salary by tacking on an additional $20,000-30,000. Instead, they’ll offer an increase of between 3-5%.
3.) Rehearse your pitch. Discussing financial matters is nerve-wracking, but it doesn’t have to be. Prepare to discuss a raise like you would for a job interview. In the days leading up to your meeting, rehearse your pitch. Slowly go through each of the reasons you’re deserving of a raise. Include research or statistics to back up your points and talk slowly. It might help to have a friend or family member quiz you. The more you practice in advance, the easier the conversation will be in reality.
4.) Prepare to be disappointed. Just because you ask for a raise doesn’t mean you’ll get one. Even if your boss thinks you’re deserving, they might not be able to afford it. Don’t let that discourage you. If your offer is turned down, at least it’s out in the open. If the business’s financial health improves in the future, your boss might even revisit the request.
By following these tips, it’s possible to set yourself up for success. Good luck, you’ve got this!