7 Things Never to Say When Asking for a Raise

Posted October 18, 2013 by
Aaron Gouveia

Aaron Gouveia, Salary.com contributing writer

Oh, you want a raise? Congratulations, you’re now in an elite group of American workers known informally as EVERYBODY!

Seriously though, let’s get into a little tough love for a minute. We know you want a raise, but have you really stopped to think about whether or not you deserve one? What’s more, have you gone over what you’re going to tell your boss when he/she asks why you deserve more money? Too many employees haven’t, and as a result are disappointed when they’re denied.

Believe me, we want you to negotiate and get more money. We’re Salary.com so that’s pretty much why we’re here. But convincing an employer to give you a raise is all predicated on showing them you’ve gone above and beyond the call of duty, and making sure they believe you’ll continue to do so in the future. It’s about exceeding expectations, not just meeting them. So with that mind, here are seven reasons you should NEVER give your boss when asking for more money.

7. “I’m Buying a House”

Hopefully your boss thinks it’s fantastic that you’re taking this huge step and is legitimately thrilled for you. But that’s where it ends.

It doesn’t matter if you’re buying a house, a new car, or jet skis – your upcoming financial burden is not relevant to your work performance, nor is it in any way the responsibility of your employer to pay you more simply because you have a big life event on the horizon.

Frankly, if the only reason you think you deserve a raise is because you’ve got a gargantuan purchase coming up, then you most assuredly don’t deserve it. And bringing it up to your boss like this will ensure you don’t get it. But if you must bring it up, talk about it in terms of putting down roots and project an image of stability that will work in your favor professionally.

 6. “I’m Having a Baby”

You’re expecting? Mazel tov! Bringing new life into the world is truly exciting news and you should be over the moon. Coincidentally, you must be from outer space if you think this new baby in any way entitles you to a raise at work.

When you ask for a raise you’re supposed to be focused on your achievements, how those wins have benefited the company, and your plan to continue this positive trend into the future. But when your boss asks you why you deserve the raise and all you’ve got is a tale about how you need money for a crib, some car seats, and diapers, well – the only thing you’re going to end up with is what eventually fills those diapers after the baby is born.

 5. “I Can’t Pay My Bills”

Financial hardship is no joke and it’s heartbreaking for the people going through it, as well as friends – and even bosses – who have to watch them suffer. But just because you’re struggling doesn’t mean you deserve a raise.

Times are still tough, and whether you work at a large or small business, you’re likely not alone in your struggle. And your company can’t realistically afford to give a raise to everyone just because they’re behind on their bills.

Also, when you begin salary negotiations you want to approach it from a position of strength, focusing on all the things you bring to the table. But if you lead with your financial woes and use that as a springboard to ask for more money, it seems like you’re trying to guilt your way into a pay increase and comes across as begging.  Continue reading . . .

Article by Aaron Gouveia and courtesy of Salary.com.

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