Kool Derby

Many people have a hard time asking for a raise. You work hard and you generate excellent results. However, you are unsure how to approach your manager about a pay increase. I remember working for an IT shop, and I learned that most of my colleagues were earning nearly 50% more than me. I had the least amount of experience, so there was some justification.

However, during my annual performance review, my manager informed me that I was in the top 10% producers in the department. While I was going to receive a pay raise because of this accomplishment, I decided to name a figure. I said, “Tom, based on the contribution I make to this department, I think I should earn $10,000 more per year.” He was quiet for about 30 seconds while he pondered my request, and responded: “Let me see what I can do.” The meeting ended.

Here are 5 reasons why you deserve a raise:

  1. You successfully completed a project that will generate new business for the company. You took the lead and made sure the best resources were included in the project. Your manager recognized you for the excellent work.
  2. Your company has downsized, and you assumed additional work from the people who departed. Because you have a finance background, your manager asked you to handle some of the budgetary work. During the past year, you’ve had to work evenings and weekends just to stay afloat.
  3. The company secured an important contract, which requires for you to travel several times per month to Shanghai, China. You are the lead HR representative in charge of providing training to individuals on long-term international assignments. In one case during the past year, you worked 45 consecutive days in Shanghai, even though the trip called for just two weeks. You felt the team needed vital training, and it was best to get it done during this visit.
  4. Several key clients are unhappy with the company’s customer service, and are thinking about switching to your competitor. You contact each of the decision-makers for the organizations, and schedule a face-to-face meeting. After the personal visits, they all decide to give your company a 1-year extension on the contract.
  5. The IT team approves the rollout of the new e-commerce package. As the senior quality analyst, you call a meeting to conduct one final audit. During this meeting, a question is raised about the security of the platform. After further investigation, a major security breach was identified. In essence, your due diligence prevented a big financial loss, and ensured that your positive reputation in the industry remained intact.

In many cases, your manager will take the lead and reward you for exceeding expectations. The increase in pay will come in the form of a raise or possibly because of a promotion. In other words, the situation usually resolves itself.

However, there are times when you will need to get the ball rolling. The annual performance review is an excellent opportunity to discuss an augmentation to your salary. However, some circumstances might require an immediate reward.

Before approaching your manager, make sure that you have your documentation and focus on the results. I took this approach, and Tom notified me a week later that my $10,000 annual increased was merited and approved.