Timing is Everything
Avoid asking for a raise when your boss is busy, in and out of meetings, or has a lot on their plate. Timing is important and can determine your success in asking. When you have the conversation, keep in mind that a pay raise can take some time. Plan your conversation before the next fiscal year (a 12 month accounting period for companies) and give yourself 4-6 months of time before you see your pay increase.
Research the Market
If you’re ready to ask for that raise, it’s time to do a little research. Meaning, start by asking friends and family in your field of work what they’re making and do a little online research as well. Check Glassdoor for similar lines of work and see if the pay increase you’re looking for is workable. While doing your market research, check out similar jobs to yours online and see the pay, years of experience, and duties. Also take note of where these other jobs are located and dig into the cost of living versus where you live.
Know Your Worth
Highlighting your skills, retelling your past achievements and what you’ve brought to the company, and explaining how your employment has benefited the company will go a long way to prove how you are making the most of your position. For example, you might say: “This time last year, I brought in 15% more sales than the previous year, and I’m currently on track to exceed 20%. I would like my compensation to reflect this shift.” Don’t be afraid to bring in your market research to this simple pitch and be sure to highlight your past achievements and performance. Bonus tip: it’s easy to get flustered and keep talking. Don’t give in. Say what you would like to say and finish up. Give your boss a moment to think through your proposal.
Set a Date
It’s easy to mention to your boss how you’d like to chat with them soon, but setting a date can feel like a challenge. A pressure-free way to set a date is to bring it up to your boss during a lull in the day. Ask them if there’s a time in the next couple weeks where you could sit down with them and discuss a few things. If you’d like to be more direct, ask if there’s a time for you and your boss to discuss your performance. Add it to your calendar and practice before the big day! After you chat with your boss, give them some time to process your offer, and take a deep breath. You did it!