Key takeaway: Negotiating a pay raise requires preparation and bold actions. You must make a case for your value and effectively demonstrate it to your boss.

You’re an asset to your company. But does your pay reflect your value? If not, it may be time to negotiate a pay raise with your boss.

Before you march into your manager’s office to demand more money, prepare your strategy and talking points. After all, you must show your boss how a raise can benefit your organization.

When making your case for your next pay raise, take the following actions:

  • Document your achievements and results
  • Prepare for objections
  • Gather details about your organization’s profits and revenue
  • Rely on facts instead of emotions

Document Your Results and Achievements

During the meeting with your boss, it’s a good idea to present reasons that your performance exceeds your current salary. Gather documents and data that support your claims. These can include:

  • Testimonials from customers, colleagues and the management team
  • Company awards
  • Industry recognition
  • Publications that document your achievements (print or online)
  • Latest performance review
  • Internal/external feedback

In addition, you can make a list of job activities and results. The activity is the task that you performed. The result is the value that the activity added to your organization.

Here is an example. Streamlined the new onboarding process, saving the HR department 10 hours per week. Be sure to use data and statistics to quantify your results.

Prepare for Objections and Tough Questions

Discussing a pay raise with your boss has the potential to be awkward. Quite frankly, your boss may feel that you’re adequately compensated for your role. It’s up to you to convince your boss otherwise.

Anticipate objections and tough questions. Know how you’ll respond before the meeting. That way, you won’t be caught off guard if things don’t go as planned. Consider the following questions.

  • Does your job performance show that you deserve a raise?
  • Is your current level of compensation aligned with industry standards?
  • Are you willing to accept other perks in lieu of a raise?
  • How much more money do you want to earn per year?
  • Is it the right time to ask for a raise?
  • What will you do if your boss denies your request?

Gather Details About Your Organization’s Profits and Revenue

If your organization is struggling financially, it may not be a good time to discuss a pay raise. It’s likely that your boss cannot meet your demands when the organization’s finances are unstable.

Research your organization to determine its financial position. Get information about quarterly profits and losses during the past year. Study the information to see if your organization can support pay raises at this time.

Perform an internet search on your organization. Read current articles and press releases to get a pulse on the company’s finances. This information may lead you to determine that it’s time to find a new job instead of asking for a raise.

Rely on Facts Instead of Emotions

For some reason, emotions can quickly creep in when people discuss money. Try to remain calm and collected throughout the discussion. If things aren’t going your way, resist the urge to let your emotions take over.

State the facts. Present a well-reasoned and logical case for your pay raise. Give your boss time to review your request. If necessary, schedule a date to discuss the verdict. Regardless of the outcome, you should end the discussion on a positive note.

Ready to build your case for your next raise? The following resources can help.

  • What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful by Marshall Goldsmith
  • Self-Promotion for Introverts: The Quiet Guide to Getting Ahead by Nancy Ancowitz
  • Big Money Energy: How to Rule at Work, Dominate at Life and Make Millions by Ryan Serhant

About Corporate Counsel Men of Color

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