Business English Course

How to ask your boss for a raise:

When you go to ask your boss for a raise there are a few things to keep in mind which will help increase your chances of actually getting the raise

Timing is important when you ask your boss for a raise. 

Make sure that he or she is in a good mood and not stressed out.  If it seems that the boss is stressed out or there are some problems going on in the company, it’s not a good time to ask for a raise.  When you do approach the boss, you should say that there’s something you’d like to discuss with them and that you’d like to set up a meeting.  Don’t just go in and ask for the raise right away.

Don’t tell the boss why you want more money. 

Many employees make the mistake of telling their boss why they want more money.    They might say something like, “I’m getting married soon and I really need some more money” or “I need more money because I have 2 kids”.  These kinds of reasons show that you don’t understand how a company works.  Employees don’t get paid based on how much money they need for their lives.  Don’t waste the boss’ time with this nonsense.  It is normal to want more money and your job is to prove why you deserve more.

Think from the boss’ perspective.

Employees are only hired because the company feels that this will somehow help earn the company more money.  Remember that.  Why else would a company decide to pay someone?  If you aren’t directly or indirectly helping the company to earn more money, you are actually a bad investment for the company.  Just because you work really hard and never come to work late, doesn’t mean that you necessarily deserve more money.  You need to explain how the work you do is benefiting the company.  You need to think of how your work has helped the company in the past, and what work you plan on doing in the future to help the company to earn even more money.  A boss would rather pay an employee a million dollars per year if it was obvious that this employee brought 5 million dollars worth of business to the company, than pay someone $10 000 per year if the boss couldn’t see how they helped the company at all.  This is true even if both employees are working equally hard. 

(Even if you are a secretary or some position not related to sales at all, you can still show how you helped earn the company money.  You could talk about how you are always thinking of new ways to help people get organized and save time, so that they can spend more time earning the company money.  This is a form of helping indirectly)

Note:  As an employee of any company, you should always be thinking of ways to improve.  As you get better at your job, you should be helping the company to earn more and more money.  You need to document what you do, and when the time is right you can ask your boss for a raise.  If you can prove to them how valuable you are to the company, they likely won’t have a problem giving you a raise.  Understand that they wouldn’t want to lose you if you were really that valuable.