How to ask for a pay rise?

You won’t get paid more if you don’t ask for it. We tell you how to talk about increasing salaries correctly – without blackmail, unnecessary emotions, and gossiping.

Before you ask

Find out how much elsewhere pays for your work

Start by looking at how much the industry pays for your qualifications. Take into account the regional specifics – the salary of an accountant or engineer in Moscow can be very different from the salary of specialists of the same qualifications in other cities of the country.

Understand what exactly the company is ready to pay for

More all – for their own profit. The more business value an employee is, the more expensive it is. Prepare for a promotion conversation – think about how your job has changed recently, how you have brought the company. For example, you began to supervise and train employees or took more shifts.

If your actions increased the profit of the business, this is a good argument for raising salaries.

More than half of HR professionals expect a pay rise in 2018 - Personnel Today

How exactly to ask?

In normal dialogue, no argument, NLP practices, and other magic. Make an appointment with your boss beforehand so that he has enough time to talk and ask what exactly needs to be done to start getting more from next month.

Come with a plan and numbers

An employer is more willing to pay for an initiative if presented in the form of an action plan – most likely, the salary will increase if you tell how to optimize work processes, improve the work of the department or reduce costs in the business.

Take on these functions for a raise to your salary – negotiate a reduction in your monthly office rent, negotiate a discount with suppliers, or come up with promotions to sell perishable food.

Name the increase correctly

Suppose your boss is ready to raise your salary. He asks how much, but you cannot answer – the boss will think that you yourself did not believe in the possibility of a raise.

Prepare two amounts by which you would like to increase your salary: optimistic – the maximum, to which, as you think, the company is ready and realistic – the one that you can get from next month.

Be ready to take something besides money

Sometimes the company is not ready to pay the extra money, but it may be different. For example, the employer agrees to compensate for a fitness club membership or helps with renting new housing – closer to the place of work.

Another option is to agree to work six-hours instead of eight or four days instead of five days. You can ask for a transfer to a remote location, a company car, or compensation for a taxi.

How not to ask?

Press for pity

Will not work: business does not care that your wife recently gave birth to a child, and the mortgage has not been paid. Rather, the boss will think that you could not plan your own budget, and this is not a reason to raise your salary.

Argument your request in the same way as, for example, mobile operators do when tariffs rise: they have – faster internet and free-roaming, you have a consistently high KPI and a growing customer base.


To start a conversation with the phrase “I heard that a colleague’s salary has been raised by … dollars” is bad form in every sense. First, your boss will think you are collecting gossip. Secondly, it is better to talk only about yourself and the benefits that you have brought to the business.

Threatening to quit

Sometimes negotiations on a salary increase begin with a threat to change the company if the salary does not rise. If you are not ready to pack up your things and vacate your workplace today, do not raise the issue of dismissal.

If you are going to work in the company further, refrain from harsh statements. An employee who goes to interviews behind the back of the manager loses trust and loyalty to the company.

I was refused, what should I do?

Do not be offended, but return to the conversation later. Find out if it is possible, in principle, to start earning more in this place, albeit in the long term – if there is a glass ceiling at work, look for a position in another company.

If there are no fundamental objections to a promotion in the future, ask your boss to set a specific goal for two to three months, after which you will return to the conversation.

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