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How to Negotiate Your Next Raise


Over the past few weeks, one of the hot topics from our inbox has been a request to do a blog posting on “How to negotiate a raise?” Out of all the career topics we cover, this is the one that will probably make you the most money. If you get it wrong, it could cost you your job.


If you are less than six months away from your next review, ask for one. Be nice, but assertively ask for one. You can get called into your boss’s office at a moment’s notice, so why can’t you ask for a special meeting? This is a two-way street. If your boss values you in any way, he/she will gladly grant you this.


Here are the three ways to get yourself that raise you deserve:


· Do your Compensation Research: Know the market value of your compensation. Call me! I have all the data you need regarding insurance salaries for account managers and producers for the DC region. Email me at rhoughton@mrfairfax.com and I will get it right out to you. And then do your own research – there are many online pay charting systems such as Glass Door GlassDoor Salary Calculator to gather up-to-date salary data.


· Lock & Load: Prior to asking for an informal review, invest the time to gather all the internal performance data that you have been tracking all year, specifically, with regards to your benchmarks and performance metrics mutually agreed upon from the most recent review period. Make a list of all the “above and beyond the call of duty” comments you have gleaned from your boss and others since your last review session. Review it so you are fluent in it. Most likely, your boss will arrive to the meeting completely unprepared…arriving from another long meeting.


· Base versus Bonus: This is one neglected area of compensation negotiations. Don’t just focus on the base compensation because in many cases this is set by Human Resources for each position, BUT bonuses are, in most cases, different. In other words, take some of the “above and beyond the call of duty” items and tie them to specific bonus amounts. This also demonstrates to your boss that you are willing to put some of your own skin in the game too. If having more time to spend traveling or with family is more important than a bigger salary or bonus, then ask for more PTO. Money doesn’t have to be the only reward for performance.


Bonus Reasons:

· Role Play & Script: The negotiating a raise meeting is a very important meeting – probably one of the most important for the entire year. Roleplay and script out what you are going to say. Yes, the chance really does favor the prepared mind. If you have control of the information, you will win this negotiation with your boss. And, yes, there is always a winner and a loser in a negotiation. A “win-win” is for losers.


· Get it in WRITING: Verbal representations are worth zero. You always want to get any promises in writing. In the worse case put it in writing yourself and present it to the boss. Otherwise, he will procrastinate and get a case of memory loss.


Final Thoughts: Stop procrastinating and get in the fight. Get that review and raise that you deserve.


Next Episode: We will discuss the Three Ways to Prepare a Killer Resume.


We always welcome your feedback at rob@mrfairfax.com


And be sure to read my blogs published every Friday at Rob's Rants and listen to our award-winning podcast at Talent & Trust Podcast published bi-weekly and also released on LinkedIn.


All the best,


Rob Houghton



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