TTG Consultants
TTG Consultants Human Resources Consultants Specializing in  Career Management and Corporate Change

by David J. Bowman

Everyone would like a raise, but few know how to make it happen. The process takes some research - in terms of what you've contributed to the organization, as well as what compensation levels exist elsewhere - but it can be yours quickly, if you follow these steps.

First, realize that asking for a raise is an emotional experience. Both dollars and ego are at stake. So, steeling yourself to the task and its outcome are necessary at the outset.

Next, when you approach the boss for a raise, you must have several things with you, as proof that you deserve more money.
  • You must bring along past performance reviews. Your boss may not remember what he/she said about you last year, nevermind the year before. Memories can be short. Of course, your boss may have changed in the past year and the new one may not have had enough time to form opinions about you. In this case, past reviews can be essential.
  • An absolute must is a list of accomplishments you've performed for the organization. Have you increased revenues; decreased costs; developed a better, faster, less costly system or method of doing things? Quantify these, in terms of dollars increased and/or costs or hours saved. You'll justify your raise on the basis of receiving your share of the increased productivity you've produced.
  • Although perhaps a part of your accomplishments, you must have with you statistics involving a recent success with which you've been involved. Keep in mind, however, you don't have to have been the only person involved in the success - you can have been a member of a team, and a "key" contributor. Again, you're only asking for a share of the results of the success.
  • Have with you salary ranges elsewhere for the same or similar jobs - both inside and outside the organization. To do this, you must do some research. Internally, ask Human Resources about the salary range for your job. Depending on where you are in that range, you'll know how much "room" there is for more money. For external ranges, ask friends in other organizations, or perhaps those in industry or functional associations about ranges elsewhere. Also, check the internet: is a good place to start. Other sites can be found by typing in "salaries" on the search line of most portals.
  • Obviously, bring with you positive body language. When talking with the boss, sit-up straight and look him/her in the eye. Slouching and looking away indicate you're unsure of yourself, or that your information can't be trusted.

Perhaps your organization has a current salary freeze, or you've found through research that you're at the upper end of the internal and external range for your job. Don't despair. There are several alternate reward systems that your organization may be using - 30% of the Fortune 500 use some form of variable compensation for non-executives (professionals, administrators, technicians, production personnel). This percentage is even higher for management. Here are just a few you might investigate.

  • Individual incentives, based on company performance and/or individual achievement. Have you been included? Ask your boss or Human Resources about these.
  • Instant incentives, based on performance for specific projects. These generally amount to between 2% and 10% of annual salary. If you haven't been included in such a plan, find out if it's being offered in your organization and get in on it.
  • Company-wide incentives, which are paid to all employees. These usually are based on bonus points for performance of a particular job category and/or financial performance of a particular business unit. If your job category isn't rewarded as well as others, it may be time to consider a change. If your unit is a financial or productivity laggard, get out and into another with better performance.
  • Gainsharing, which is based on increased productivity and/or cost reductions. Typically, this system is used in manufacturing and operations functions. Have you been a part of these calculations? If you're not included in gainsharing, consider if your job is peripheral to a group that's within that system. Are you essential to their efficient operation? If you can make your case effectively, you may be included.
  • Company stock, which often is granted to star performers. About 30% of U.S. companies use this reward system as an incentive. Have you been overlooked for past performance? Have you performed at your peak? Regardless of the ups and downs of the stock market, this can be an attractive reward, presuming the stock is free.
Most resolutions for the new year require drastic mental or physical changes. Not so with getting a raise. If you have a history of accomplishments - even minor ones, or those as part of a team - and if you do some homework to become articulate in describing them, as well as to discover the alternate reward systems available, this resolution could come true quickly!

Dave invites you to read other inspiring articles FREE.

  • Resolving Conflicts - Equitably!
  • Resolving to Seek Higher Pay Sets an Achievable Goal
  • FORBES: Tips for Execs to Prevent Disgruntled Worker Backlash
  • FORBES: Execs Bulk Up on Protection as Violent Threats Rise
  • Want to Be a Hollywood Star? Here Are Some Tips...
  • Avoiding Workplace Litigation - Part I
  • Avoiding Workplace Litigation - Part II
  • Where's the People Factor?
  • Are YOU Ready for Radical Change?
  • Five Best Ways to Build... And Lose... Trust in the Workforce
  • Job Survival Skills for a New Century
  • Your Career is a Business... So Run it Like One!
  • Free Trade... Good or Bad for US Workers
  • A Personal 'Mission Statement' Spells Success
  • Getting Ahead Isn't Playing Politics!
  • The Tele-Work Option
  • Stress in the Workplace
  • Where Has All the Loyalty Gone?
  • Keeping Teams Effective
  • Hiring & Firing Employees: Don't Force "At-Will" In Writing
  • The Problem of Sexual Harassment
  • Workplace Violence - A Real Killer!
  • Resolving Conflicts - Equitably
  • Excellence - Just a Little Better Than Average
  • Are You Adept At Adapting?

    Find out more about Dave Bowman...

  • Dave's Biography
  • Motivational and Strategic Speaker
  • See and Hear Dave
  • Contact Dave

    Back to the Site Map

  • 4201 Wilshire Blvd; Suite 430 Los Angeles, CA 90010 | Phone: 323/936-6600 or 800/736-8840 | Fax: 323/936-6721 | E-mail: Click here
    Corporate/Commercial Services Government Services Personal Career Services What They Are Saying Free Stuff About Us Our Clients Articles Site Map

    Home | About TTG | Site Map | Career Transition Outplacement | Organizational Development
    Personal Career Advancement | Recruiting Services