Asking for a raise?

Is asking for a raise wrong? Or is that something that demeans your position within the organization?

In my honest opinion neither it is a wrong thing to do nor it presents you in negative light in front of your boss. In fact you must ask for a raise if you feel you deserve it. You do not want to find yourself in a position where you are underpaid for your efforts. This is unfair to you and there is no good reason why you should live with it.

While virtually every working person would agree with such an assessment, many may not be completely sure as to how to go about asking for a raise. It is true there is a right way and a wrong way to do so. You definitely want to do things right or else you will discover you not only do not get the raise you asked for but you might end up on shaky ground with an employer.

Rather than suffer such undesirable outcomes, it would be best to understand some of the common approaches for successfully asking for a raise.

What's the industry standard?

First and foremost, you need to understand what an acceptable pay rate is for the job you are performing. You cannot ask for an outrageous fee for a job that has a certain cut off in terms of feasible pay. You need to compare the state average of what people earn in such a position and then you need to compare it to the pay structure of your company. Is the company you work for a frugal one in terms of pay? If so, you have to keep this in mind when you are seeking an increase in compensation.

A little bit of research may be required to hit on all these points but the effort will be worth it if you are duly compensated in the end.

What's the value of your time and skills?

You will also have to factor in your own value. Are you someone that is a diligent, responsible, dependable professional that always delivers on time and with a high level of quality? If so then you certainly should not sell yourself short in terms of your acceptable level of pay.

Flexibility and soft selling is the name of the game

It is suggested that you are flexible and not demanding when asking for a raise. You have to be open to fielding a counter offer from those that can approve pay increases. Never put forth a take it or leave type offer because any sensible employer will leave it. Trying to force an employer's hand or making unacceptable and impolite demands is not the way to go about asking for a raise. Such an approach is self-defeating which is why it must be avoided at all costs.

Understand the limitations of the other side of the table

You do need to understand what your boss would consider appropriate service that warrants a pay raise. You cannot define your pay scale based on your parameters and your parameters alone. You have to understand what your boss considers appropriate or else the two of you will not be on the same page. At times even if your boss appreciates your value and contribution to the organization there is very less he can do within the scope of company policies. In such a situation irrespective of his best efforts he may not be able to get you the desired raise you might have. You must be sensitive towards this aspect and plan accordingly. Putting undue pressure on your boss might lead you no where apart from ruining your rapport with him.

As with many other things in life, asking for a raise requires proper timing. You will always want to ask for a raise at the most appropriate time as this will enhance the likelihood you will be approved. There are no guarantees in this regard but good timing does help the cause.