Young people tend to change their jobs a lot. Some estimates say that people in their twenties and early thirties move on to a new challenge on average every two years. There’s one overarching reason for this: it’s by far the easiest way to get a pay hike!
But what happens if you find a job you love at a company that suits you? This, my friend, is where negotiation comes into play. Any good company will want to keep talented people and maintain a high level of employee satisfaction. So, if you think it’s time that you got a little more cash to flash, choose your moment carefully, and then go for gold!
If you want to negotiate a raise, you need to be able to make a convincing case. Research industry standards, and what other companies are paying for the kind of work that you do. This will help you to better understand where you rank in the grand scheme of things financially. Then, that you can build a strong argument based on your findings. Make sure to only use reliable sources, and don’t just bring a string of anecdotal figures that you can’t back up.
Every good speech needs a few practice runs. If you’re going to approach your boss and lay out a case for why you should get a raise, you need to be prepared for every eventuality. Seek advice from people who have been down this road before, and lay out your case for them. Think about what you’re going to do if your boss flat out refuses, or if they offer you a lower figure. What’s ideal, and what would you be happy to settle for? If the company can’t afford to give you more money, are their other perks that you might take in lieu of a pay rise? What would you consider a win-win?
Consider Your Employer’s Perspective
Is the raise that you’re asking for feasible for your employer? How would it come across to them? How might it affect your future prospects if you were to get a raise now? Would what you’re asking for change your relationship with your manager? If you can think about the situation from your employer’s point-of-view, it will make it easier for you to construct an argument that they can justify to themselves, and to the accounts department!
Get Ready to Prove Yourself
If you think you’re worth a bigger pay packet, you need to be ready to prove it. Think about what you bring to the company, and why it’s important for them to retain you as an employee. Have hard facts ready and show how your contributions make a difference to the company’s operations. If you can show that you’re an asset, the more likely they are to want to keep you on-side.
Before you go into a salary negotiation, you need to be honest with yourself about what the company can actually handle, and how realistic your request is. While it’s important to be assertive and ambitious, you also need to seem clued-in and that you’re seeking to make this deal based on research, knowledge and the value you bring to the team. If you ask for a salary way above the going norm, you could seem completely out of touch. I’m not saying don’t be ambitious, but be prepared to have to make a bargain that’s within reason.
Talking about your monetary worth to a company is deeply linked to your personal sense of worth, and how you perceive the value that your boss places on your contribution. Therefore, it’s not surprising that people can sometimes get a little emotional or frustrated. But it’s essential that you keep your cool, and make your points from a logical place. Remember: this isn’t about you personally, this is a business transaction. Make sure to treat it as such.
Don’t Back Yourself Into a Corner
Whatever you do, don’t spring an ultimatum on your boss. If you do, you may end up without a raise and having to quit just to maintain a modicum of pride. Remember that you need to be assertive, realistic, well-informed, confident and also a little compassionate. Being able to understand where your boss is coming from will help you to find a middle-ground that will make you both happier. And if during negotiations you discover that actually you and your employers are not, and will never be, on the same page then bam! You can feel happy and justified saying sayonara!