2014 Salary Survey: Who Makes What
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How to Make More
Three experts offer tips on negotiating a raise
Executive and Career Coach
Genuine Impact Consulting
Know your value
Start by keeping track of your accomplishments, Bartels says. “You have to sell yourself to yourself first,” she notes. Bartels adds that women often find this more challenging than men, therefore developing self-confidence is especially crucial for them. “Once you own it, you can negotiate accordingly.”
References often win candidates new jobs; you can use them in a similar fashion to win a raise. Ask a project manager, a former boss, or a colleague to write an email endorsing your skills or recent work that you can forward to your boss.
Do your homework
Online tools such as salary.com can give you an idea of salary ranges in your field, and sometimes it pays off to hire a compensation consultant—Bartels herself has done it.
Being direct and patient will go further than an attitude of entitlement. “Start on a positive note about what you enjoy and appreciate about the job,” Bartels says. “State your case, and then pause and listen to what your boss has to say. Give him or her time to look into it and get back to you.”
Prototype Career Service
Specialty: Holistic career conversations
Consider it a conversation
A salary negotiation doesn’t have to be one big scary meeting, Lindgren says. Think of it as an ongoing conversation with your boss that’s part of the bigger picture of your career: “Where am I headed in this job, this company, this industry?” A raise is simply one stepping stone along that journey.
And a two-way street
Your relationship with your boss should be more of a partnership than a rigid hierarchy, Lindgren says. Conversations about salary help establish the employee as someone who values fair treatment. But she advises to talk about more than money: “There should be a sense of, now that I’m learning this, what else might I do for the boss or company?” she says.
Nail the timing
Don’t be locked into thinking that salary negotiations have to take place during a performance review at the end of the year, Lindgren says. Better to wait until there’s a good cash flow in your unit. “It’s just like a kid asking for more allowance when Mom and Dad have a lot of dollars in their pockets,” she says. Pay attention to budget planning cycles, too, so you can get in on next year’s stash before the numbers are locked in.
Consider the source
If you work for a small company, the money you’re asking for could be coming from the owner’s wallet, so make sure your gratitude for working for the company is especially evident, Lindgren advises.
Heckler Endowed Chair in Business Administration
University of St. Thomas
Specialty: Management/leadership development
Spin your value
“A good strategy is to demonstrate how you contributed to an organizational objective recently, preferably more than one objective, and preferably in a way that you can translate into a dollar amount,” Rothausen-Vange says. “For example, if you can show that you brought in an additional $250,000 that year, or saved the company $100,000, you can ask that a portion of that ongoing revenue or cost savings be added to your salary.”
If your boss’s eyes glaze over when you show him or her comparable salaries, you may want to force the issue. “Unfortunately, in some industries and jobs the best way to get a pay raise is to have a job offer from another organization, which proves your worth and forces your organization to counter or let you go,” Rothausen-Vange says.
Invoke your inner New Yorker
“Minnesota culture is more indirect than on the coasts, and in some ways has more in common with Japanese or Chinese cultures, which value modesty and humility more than ‘tooting your horn,’” Rothausen-Vange says. Don’t be afraid to be assertive: If you know your value, you’ll likely gain respect
by expecting to be fairly compensated for
it, she notes.
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