- Don’t be unrealistic – Don’t ask for a million cedi raise. Everyone wants to be happily retired and living a luxurious life as soon as possible, but try not to rely too much on a salary increase to lead you on the path to early retirement.
- Don’t assume your supervisor/CEO knows all your accomplishments – Your supervisor/CEO knows you’re a good employee but he or she is probably not as intimately acquainted with your accomplishments as you are, so be prepared to discuss your key achievements. There’s a saying that ‘you’re only as good as your last success’ so while your past achievements will aid your argument for a raise, some strategic thinking about the future will make you look like an even more valuable employee, and who knows, your next raise could be just handed to you without you asking. Think about how your future job performance and future achievements will address your company’s struggles and make it even more successful in the future.
- Don’t be negative – Focus less on what you need and more on what you deserve. Try not to mention or complain about your personal money or economy-related issues (this surprised me, because almost everyone I consulted regarding my raise said I should mention my increase in expenditure and how I *need* more money), especially if they are unrelated to your job or job performance, the fact that you haven’t had a raise in years, or the fact that you’re doing the work of 5 people. Instead, try focusing more on showcasing your strengths and achievements. Don’t do this; do that.
- Don’t make ultimatums or threaten to leave – Just don’t, unless you’re willing to follow through if you don’t get what you want. Try and keep it professional.
- Don’t be disheartened if the answer is a “no” – No one likes to be turned down. It’s never a nice feeling; especially when you have psyched yourself up, prepared your notes, and worked up the courage to initiate the raise conversation. If the answer to your request for a raise is a “no,” ask politely when you can have the raise conversation again (maybe your company has a raise/performance review policy you’re not aware of) or ask what you need to do in order to be considered for a raise and get ready to work even harder so that the answer will be a “yes” the next time.
- If the answer is a “no” and you still feel like you deserve more, consider asking for a (higher) job title to match your new job responsibilities, more vacation days, or if you’re feeling really lucky, the ability to work from home from time to time (less money spent on commuting and lunch, and more time for freelance work) if the type of job you have allows it.
- Don’t talk yourself out of it – It’s a difficult and often awkward conversation but it’s an important one to have. If you don’t ask for a raise, you might never get one. The worst case scenario is that the answer is a “no” in the case, see number 5. You can do it!
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