In this economy, is it even possible to ask for a raise?
The answer is, maybe. But, it’s not that simple. There are certain steps you must take before you even consider asking the question.
- Evaluate Your Company. Is your company profitable? If not, then the answer is a definite no.
- Be Realistic. Don’t just go to salary.com, you must look at yourself comparatively to people doing the same job as you. Are you doing better than them? Are you bringing extra value to the role and company? If so, consider asking.
- Assess Your Worth. Have you taken on slack for an employee who recently left the company? How have you affected morale? Do you add or take away from the culture? What tangible results have you produced for the company?
If you can positively answer these questions then you should consider asking, but first you must master the “art” of asking for a raise.
- Be Confident, Not Cocky. When asking for more money, your tone of voice matters. Make sure to be confident, yet not come across as demanding.
- Know When to Ask. The best time to ask for a raise is during a performance review or when feedback from your manager is positive. If you’re continuously delivering at high levels and receiving consistent positive feedback, this is a clear sign a raise may be in sight.
- Have Good Reasoning and Tangible Examples. Outline your job description in comparison to what you are doing on a day-to-day basis. Make sure to provide in detail the tasks or initiatives you independently began or what you did that was above and beyond management's expectations. If you’ve directly helped or developed a product to increase profit, revenue, or the customer base make sure to mention it.
Remember even if you do all the steps above, make sure you’re mentally prepared if your employer says no. Instead of becoming upset or quitting, ask your boss how you can improve and what steps you need to take in order to receive a raise in the future. If you’re proactive and positive, your chances of a raise will one day be in sight.
For more information, see LaSalle Network's segment on NBC's Smart Money