If you suspect you’re underpaid, the topic is worth broaching with your boss. But build your case first.
1. Check online salary calculators to see how your salary squares with industry standards.
“The better informed you are, the more you’re empowered to ask for what you believe you deserve,” says Sunny Bates, author of the book, How to Earn What You’re Worth: Leveraging Your Goals and Talents to Land Your Dream Job.
2. Leave co-workers out of it. Talking aboutwith a co-worker could backfire. Even worse is telling the boss that you know a co-worker makes X. Just because you share a title doesn’t mean you’ll pull in the same salary.
3. Realize need isn’t a credible reason for a raise. “The classic mistake in negotiating is the victim approach,” says Chapman. “That doesn’t go far with bosses, because their job is to pay you for your work.”
4. Quantify your worth. What’s your value to the company? How core is your role? How essential are you for your boss to reach her peak performance? How much money did you save the company last year?
“Say to the boss, ‘I’ve saved the company $30,000. I should be paid above average,’” says Chapman.
5. Seek creative solutions. Could be your manager’s hands are tied, when it comes to giving a raise. Look toward other rewards.
Could you negotiate leaving early one day a week? Is there a conference the company could pay for? Does your company have a bonus program you could be part of?
As Bates says, “If you don’t ask, you don’t get.”
— Adapted from “How to get paid what you deserve,” Jane Porter FINS.