Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

October 14 2014

9 Things Not To Do When Asking For A Raise

By Carolyn Clark


Asking for a raise is always awkward unless you are Olivia Pope, and let’s face it, none of us are as comfortable as she is saying, “You can’t afford me.” 

Read these before you plan that big meeting…


9. Timing is everything.

Say your meeting is having back-to-back record breaking attendance and membership is at all-time high, sure the climate is right to ask for a raise. Conversely, if turnover is out-of-control and you’re internal meetings focus on how to cut costs and increase revenues, put the raise request on the back burner – Otherwise your boss may well question your planet of origin.

SEE ALSO:  5 Résumé No-Nos

8. No whining.

You’re asking your boss to invest in you. So what if you haven’t received a raise since you walked in the door during the 2010 Great Recession. Don’t go negative – if you have to talk about yourself, always go positive.

7. Don’t compare desk piles with your coworkers.

Yes, you do three times the work as your neighbor, but your boss already knows that. It’s better to highlight your accomplishments and what you’ve done to create a positive impact.

6. Don’t drag out a calendar.

Unless you signed a contract that negotiated a raise on a specific date, ‘how long’ is a meaningless measure for raise requesting. Don’t lead with your tenure, lead with your accomplishments.

SEE ALSO: 4 Questions to Answer Before Asking for a Pay Raise

5. Good enough, is not.

If you’re in an office that throws out a lot of attaboys for people just fulfilling their job descriptions, you might think that the minimum is good enough to request a raise. Think again. Raises are for high flyers with super powers and with potential value in the future.

4. Sympathy does not equal a pay increase.

Yes, your basement flooded in the last storm and your kid needs braces – these are not reasons for your boss to invest more in you. Yes, those are financial stressors, but they do not qualify you for a raise and voicing them may actually shine a negative light on you.

3. Act sane.

Don’t ask for a ridiculous amount of money. Do your homework, know what others in your field are making [this is what the internet was invented to do] and when ask ‘how much’ you’ve got an answer and rationale.
In short, do your research and then exercise common sense and good judgment.

SEE ALSO: Websites Worth Using for Career Advice

2. Don’t bring up Guidestar.

Yeah, yeah, regardless if you work for a non-profit that has public records or someone left something on the copy machine they shouldn’t have… this is a terrible idea. Trust will immediately evaporate, along with your raise prospects – Next it might be your job.

1. Don’t threaten to quit.

Nobody likes ultimatums. Not even you. This tactic has a limited shelf life and while it might work today, the consequences of putting your loyalty up for sale will haunt you next year, five years from now, even twenty years from now.

Now put on your game face, prepare your list of achievements and think, “It’s handled.”

Please log in to post comments.