In a shaky economy, it’s best just to be damn grateful you have a job, right?
Wrong, says Joel Garfinkle, author of Getting Ahead: Three Steps to Take Your Career to The Next Level. “You can still ask for more money if you can show that you’re going to have an impact on the bottom line,” he says.
Do your legwork: ask a HR rep what time of the year raises are given out. And aim for a nice day: experts say that people tend to be in better moods when it’s sunny.
When they are hesitant
OK, time to take a different tack. Start by letting your boss know you are worth the salary boost by presenting evidence of your value, such as emails from clients saying “you rock” or the jaw-dropping results of a project of yours, says Elaine Varelas, managing partner at Keystone Partners, a career management firm.
And always be friendly, but wipe off the too-eager grin. “Over-smiling is a credibility robber for women when negotiating,” says business coach Dr Carol Kinsey Goman, author of The Silent Language of Leaders.
Say you’re sympathetic to the tough times, then offer specific ways you can save the company money, such as taking extra work, says Vickie Milazzo, author of Wicked Success is Inside Every Woman.
When they are still not convinced
There might be more going on in the business than you realise and your boss can’t control, so if your boss won’t budge, ask if she can show the love with tuition reimbursement, work from home days or a car spot.
Pushing further will jeopardise your relationship with your boss. But leave the door open for future discussions by asking what tangible things you can do between now and your next evaluation to pump up your paycheck.
What not to say
“I really need the extra money.” When making the case for a raise, don’t bring up living expenses or loans – they’re irrelevant. “Your boss only cares about your value to the company,” says career coach Joel Garfinkle.Good luck!