How to Ask for A Raise Like a Pro

After working your butt off to land your dream job, it's easy to find yourself coasting once you're in that position. However, just as much as we should be asking for more responsibilities to grow our skills set, there's one factor most people are too afraid to ask for as well - more money.

It only makes sense that as you grow within the company, so does your responsibilities and therefore your pay grade. But people often feel too intimidated to ask for a raise. Money is understandably an uncomfortable topic of conversation, however, it is a necessary one.

We spoke with personal finance expert and founder of the blog Money We HaveBarry Choi, on how to ask for a raise like a pro.

When do you know you're ready to ask for a raise? Is there an appropriate time to do it?

There's no set timeframe for asking for a raise so I like to look at it based on merit. If you've excelled at your duties and have taken on more work, then it's probably time to ask for a raise.

If you've excelled at your duties and have taken on more work, then it's probably time to ask for a raise

That doesn't mean you should ask for a raise as soon as your employer asks you to do something outside of your job description, you should ensure that you've got the new skills and/or experience before asking for some extra money.

When asking for a raise, what are some selling points you need to take into consideration?

Making yourself invaluable is the best way to sell yourself when asking a raise. Make sure you're doing your job to the best of your abilities, but also try to take on additional tasks when they're presented to you. You shouldn't expect to be management right away, but if you can learn the skills that will get you a promotion and the next pay grade, then you're on the right track. Depending on your field, it may make sense to take some additional courses, but with some jobs, all the learning you'll need will be taught at work. These skills and your work ethic will be your selling points.

What is a fair percentage to ask for a raise? What is considered a good pay raise?

If you're going to ask for a raise, make sure you know the comparables as well as your own worth. Take a look glassdoor.com and see if other companies are offering higher compensation than what you're currently being paid so you have a rough idea of what you should ask for.

if you're going to ask for a fair amount, you need to explain why you deserve that amount

There's no set percentage you should ask for, but if you're going to ask for a fair amount, you need to explain why you deserve that amount.

What is the best course of action if you are refused a raise?

Getting a raise isn't guaranteed, so it's always just as important to have a plan if your boss says no. Ask them what skills you need to improve on before a raise is considered. If their request is reasonable, then you know what you need to work towards.

You should also ask for a review either six months or one year from the time you asked for a raise so you can track your progress.

You should also ask for a review either six months or one year from the time you asked for a raise so you can track your progress. If you've met all of your employer's requirements from your previous meeting, but you're still denied a raise, it may be time to look for a new job.

Barry Choi  is a Toronto-based personal finance and travel expert who frequently makes media appearances. His blog Money We Have is one of Canada’s most trusted sources when it comes to money and travel.

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