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How to ask for a raise

Asking your boss for more money can be a nerve-wracking experience. But with a little preparation, you can smoothly handle this meeting and may soon be earning what your hard work deserves. Here are some steps to help ensure the response to your request comes back in your favour.

Asking for a raise

So, you want to make more money and have decided to ask your boss for a raise. Neither begging nor kicking off the meeting by declaring “Show me the money!” is a good idea. Instead, prepare and plan as you would for any meeting. Take these steps to make the request go as smoothly as possible, and you just may find yourself getting a bigger paycheque soon.

Do your homework

Research what people in your position are getting paid in your industry to assess whether or not your expectations are realistic. Consider your location and adjust the salary accordingly (for example, what someone makes in Vancouver will differ from what the same position is paid in Calgary). Once you’ve done this, decide how much of a raise you want. Once you’ve decided on the percentage wage increase, be prepared to negotiate. You can bump up the percentage slightly if you want some room to negotiate, but avoid asking for too much at first, so as not to shut down the discussion entirely.

Prepare a roundup of your accomplishments

Of course, we all feel we deserve more money, but give your performance a critical analysis. Outline the things you’ve done above and beyond the call, and list the projects you pulled off with more-than-usual success. These are the reasons you may be entitled to a raise; simply showing up on time and getting things done in the same way they’ve always been done won’t make your case. Concrete examples of the value you add to the company will be what convinces your boss you are worth receiving a raise.

Have a back-up plan

It’s very possible that even if your boss agrees that you are entitled to more money, his or her hands are tied — the money just isn’t there. This is why it’s important to have other benefits in mind—- perhaps more vacation days, or the flexibility to work from home a few days a week.

Schedule your meeting strategically

Request a meeting with your boss at a time when your boss will more receptive to the idea of giving you a raise. This might be, for example, after the numbers have come in about stellar sales in the first quarter of the year. Also, consider the timing of your meeting as it pertains to your accomplishments, too. If you just pulled off a incredibly successful campaign, your boss will have this top-of-mind when you’re presenting your case.

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