Talking money with your boss is probably right up there on the list of conversations you’d rather not have. It’s understandably awkward, but it may be necessary if you feel you deserve a raise. This handy checklist will help you come to the table prepared when it’s time for the talk.
Revisit your contract
Check your contract for details on performance or wage reviews. If your review is long overdue, it’s more than fair to ask for one—another awkward conversation perhaps, but one that could result in a heftier paycheque.
Consider the timing
Timing, truly, is everything. This past year is a perfect example, with companies big and small catching a tough break due to the pandemic. While that doesn’t mean a raise isn’t in the cards, it could mean that it’s more likely to happen in a financially stable climate.
Book the meeting
A simple, “Hey, can we chat?” might work for everyday requests, but you’ll want to book some uninterrupted time with your boss for this one. Scheduling a meeting in advance gives you and your boss time to prepare and minimizes distractions, like a pressing deadline or another meeting to get to.
Do your research
If your boss agrees to a review, be sure to do your research first. The salary you want and the salary that’s the norm for your industry, position and experience may not be one and the same. Knowing what’s standard will ensure you’re not asking for too little or too much.
Know your why
“My rent just went up” isn’t going to cut it. While that’s a valid reason to need more money, it’s not the approach you want to take when asking for it. If you’re consistently taking on more responsibilities or acting in more of a leadership role than your position calls for, you have valid reasons to be compensated for that extra work.
Consider your wins
Think about your wins and any challenges you’ve overcome on the job. Bringing this information, along with any commendations you’ve received or data to back up your accomplishments, gives your request that much more clout.
Take the “me” perspective
“What’s in it for me?” This is a common thought with any request. You already know what’s in it for you, but what’s in it for your boss? If a higher pay grade equates to a long-term relationship with a valued employee, your boss may see it as a worthwhile move. This isn’t necessarily something to verbalize during your meeting, but something to keep in mind during your ask.
Formulate (and practice) your ask
With the groundwork in place, you can start to formulate your ask. This doesn’t have to be a long, drawn-out presentation, but rather a concise summary of everything you’ve prepped for.
“I appreciate that you’ve given me more responsibility this past year in managing X, Y and Z projects. I feel I’ve exceeded the objectives set out for me, looking at the success rates we’ve seen. I’d love to continue taking on this kind of work and to talk about how my compensation could reflect that.”
Then, practice, practice, practice! Having a good grasp of what you’re going to say and how you’re going to say it will give you more confidence when you approach the topic.
Call on an expert
There are people who help other people handle this kind of stuff for a living. Whether you’re looking for advice on how to get ahead with your career, or you’re an employer needing some guidance on conducting reviews, you can call on an expert for advice. Vexxit can match you with a human resources consultant or a leadership development coach, giving you an extra boost to take your career or organization to the next level.