When Should You Ask For A Raise?
What’s something you have, but always feel like there’s never enough?
In our economic state, the cost of goods and services are rising and our pay isn’t always rising in union. At this point, I’m sure you feel like you’re only getting paid to pay the bills and the mortgage and the kids’ expenses. It’s frustrating and stressful. When you thought it couldn’t get worse, just hold on. It can.
Asking for a raise is awkward and sometimes you might blurt out the wrong thing, leading to more stress and frustration. Keep in mind, there’s a place, a time and a way to ask for anything. Especially a raise.
Know Where You Stand
First things first. Think about how long you’ve been working for the company of interest and when was your last raise. If you haven’t been working at the company for a year, then just wait out the next few months.
If you’ve been there for over a year and haven’t had a raise, you’re entitled to ask. Here are a few other reasons you can request a raise:
- You implemented a strategy that effectively cut down costs
- You landed an important client
- You recently got promoted
- Some people say you’re indispensable to the company
- You planned a very successful event
- You won an award for your hard work and/or achievements
It’s All About Timing
If the company isn’t thriving as well as it usually does, now isn’t a good time to ask for a raise. On the other hand, if business is booming and clients are walking in left, right, and center, then go ahead! Keep tabs on your boss’ mood. Are they upset? Are they stress or tired? Did they miss out on their morning cup of coffee ritual? If any of these are the case, take a pass and try another day.
As you should do for anything important, always plan a face-to-face meeting. That means no emails requesting for a raise. It’s unprofessional, and wouldn’t you rather see your boss’ reaction? Put your communication skills to the test, plan out what you’re going to say and say it, politely, of course.
Don’t Ask For Too Much
The average raise is between 1% to 5%. Remember that asking for a raise is not only uncomfortable for you, but it’s difficult for your boss too. They may want to give you whatever you want, but simply can’t because of the profit margins. Be respectful to the company you work for by asking for a reasonable raise. Who knows, if you ask for 3%, they might bump it to 4% if you’ve done an outstanding job.
Asking for a raise isn’t easy, for you or your boss. There are many things you have to consider beforehand. Have you done anything outstanding at work? Is the company in a financial crisis? Always plan out what you’re going to say and how you’re going to say it. And don’t forget to dress the part. Put on a tie, iron your blouse or fish out those dress shoes. Follow these guidelines, and you’ll be in good graces with your boss; whether they give you the raise or not.