How to Get a Job Promotion – 18 Steps for a Successfull Pay Hike Request

Getting promoted doesn't happen by itself, magically

You must take proven steps to get the next job promotion

Have you been working in the same company and held the same position for years without an upward trajectory commensurate with your skills, abilities and education while everyone else seems to get a fast job promotion and a higher salary?

Yes? Of course. Perhaps it’s time to start negotiating for a pay rise or at least work towards being recognised with a better pay even within the same position.

There are times when employers really reward their workers for the right experience and education. Also, someone somewhere is earning more for doing exactly the same job within the same organisation or in a different larger company. If you have a chance to obtain a better pay or promotion, appear in an interview or go through a performance review, there are many ways of getting some promotion in your workplace. Not negotiating or even trying is basically leaving the money on the table…

Here are a number of things you need to remember while thinking about a pay hike and a job promotion.

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Number of days until you get the promotion

1. Ask. Stop waiting for angels to come.

If you remain in your position and misery for years waiting for the boss to come up with the decision to reward you with a better pay and a career promotion you might never get it. Ask and you could receive what you want.

You must know that people often have to ask for increases and to get promoted. Bosses might think that employees are happy at their level and that they do not necessarily need more. But that’s not the truth for everyone. Actually, a good chunk of people are not aiming for higher levels in their enterprise, but some are and you have to act if you are part of the latter.

Stop being shy and stop working harder than you can support because you think it will be valued. You have to explain to your manager what you’ve done great and what steps will you take in order to access the next promotion. It’s important to let your boss know about your goals and long-term view in the company. Otherwise, you’ll stay at your current level.

But… Prior to doing this, read the following in order the avoid a disaster.

2. Prepare really well

One of the things that stop many people from getting the promotion they want or better pay is lack of preparation, which broods fear about what will happen. Do as much research as you can; ascertain the amount of money people are getting within your job group or position in similar companies in terms of size as well as within your geographical area. Talk to friends and acquaintances in different companies or search online.

While you search online, you’ll want to see what the 3 following websites have to offer. They already did the research for you, use it!

3. Quantify to get noticed

When you appear for a performance review, the last thing you want is to be vague when it comes to numbers. Avoid general statements like “I managed a large team of salespeople across the Detroit Metropolitan area”. Rather, be specific and say “I managed 35 people across Detroit Metropolitan area resulting in a 40 percent increase in profits that brought the company an additional $500,000”. Be as numerical as you can and quantify your accomplishments to highlight them as much as possible.

How many times did you forget you accomplishements when you were in front a real situation and got anxious?

Probably a lot. Many people feel helpless towards their success when they feel anxious and they forget what they wanted to say. 

You might have a couple of success on hand, but do you remember enough to justify a promotion?

Perhaps you can maintain an achievement’s log updated occasionally. When you have a chance to appear in a performance review session all the things accomplished within the company will be easier to point out. You’ll make a strong case for a promotion or salary increase.

4. Mind the way you talk

The way you talk including your body language is critical in any discussion for a pay hike or promotion. For instance, crossing your legs could be construed as rude. Keep your voice tone even, give genuine smiles and indicate your gratitude for being called for the performance review or interview.

Try to practice your voice tone prior to asking for a raise. It says a lot about yourself. If you feel anxious or insecure, it will appear in your voice tone and it can be interpreted as you are not ready for the promotion.

You might be perceived as on the defensive if your voice tone gets higher during the meeting. Again, it might be a sign that you are not ready for the next level. Try to be calm and in control of the meeting.

5. Converse about it

The last thing you want is a delivering a monologue in a meeting where your pay rise or promotion is being determined. While negotiating ask questions that are open-ended such as change of responsibilities that comes with a salary hike and what the management believes to be a range commensurate with your job description or role.

As you converse, let the panel know how your experience, skills and education warrants a better salary including what you have brought or bringing into the organisation.

6. Timing

Requesting a promotion or pay rise is as important as the timing. For example, if your company has had the shakiest of quarters the management might not consider a pay hike or promotion for obvious reasons.

7. Know the schedule of your employer

Know the schedule of your boss so that when you appear in his/her office, especially if there was no prior meeting planned, you’ll not find her/him at the worst time. Knowing the boss’s routine and schedule also allows you to prepare a memo or communication requesting a meeting to discuss the matter at hand so that your manager can devote time to your meeting.

If he’s in a hurry, chances are the discussion will not last as long as it should and it won’t be listening correctly to your requests.

8. What does your boss value?

The personality of your employer is also very important. An open, outgoing nice guy kind of employer has no qualms with gangbuster approach and if that’s the way to go, you might want to know the things your boss values. This can be numbers, loyalty or how you get along with other employees and the management.

9. Buyer mindset

Are you coming for a salary hike negotiation for doing the same work?

Adopt a buyer mind-set in contrast to that of a seller. Avoid being arrogant or menacing but recognise your value. Indicate that being compensated deservedly for what you are doing is something you are looking forward to.

Remember that your boss will want you to be an asset for the company. Don’t try to fool him with fake promises, you don’t want to get a demotion a few months later…

That being said, take a step back and ask yourself from the point of view of your boss why you should receive a pay hike or a promotion. Justify your increase with facts, financial benefits and profits brought into the organisation, work ethic, results, practices and ideas introduced into the company among other things.

10. Know company financials

You might want to keep yourself updated on the performance of the company financially to know the right time to request a pay hike.  Whether there is a recession around the country it might not be a depression and your company could be doing really well.  While some areas of the economy could be hurting, needed companies will always be sought and yours might just be one of them.

11. Lay offs? Take advantage

If the company has been going through financial uncertainties and lay offs you might want to take advantage of the situation if you have escaped the axe. Do as much as you can to show you are really committed to the organisation and fill any gap or holes left by those who were unfortunate.

Your boss will realize that you can do someone else’s job while doing yours also. You’ll deserve a promotion or at least a pay hike.

12. How much are your co-workers earning?

Before you think about a salary hike and appearing before a performance review meeting to plead your case, it’s helpful to know how much your co-workers within the same job group and qualifications are earning.

However, no matter what happens never present or hint the facts to the boss. Such an approach will erode the credibility you have always been building for years. Knowing your comparison group salaries should only make you feel confident for the meeting.

13. Lower your expectations

While pay rates and contracts are definitely going up, companies approach pay increase and job promotions in different ways. In most cases the approach is standard and uniform for all employees. If your company does its pay review at the end of August, you must have a pretty good reason why yours is a special case and should be looked into in January.

Above all, never forget salary is one area of your pay package; others include occupational pensions, bonuses, insurance cover, share plans among others.

14. Adopt a long-term view

Sometimes the might boss insist the economy doesn’t allow a pay hike or promotion just yet. In case you realise the boss’s ‘no’ means exactly that, ask whether he/she is willing to consider an accelerated yearly review or another meeting perhaps 5-6 months later. This approach will also give you time to think about your skills, experience and career path.

15. There are always other options apart from money

Sometimes the company might not be giving a raise in the coming 12 months, but it doesn’t mean you can’t get something of equal importance instead. Rather, request an extra week in your annual leave. It can also be an office with a wonderful view, flexible working hours, a better parking spot or a chance to join another branch or department.

16. Give a proposal yourself

It’s important to give your boss a pay hike proposal rather than waiting him/her to prompt it. Carry out enough research before you appear; know the salary ceiling if any and aim high when you must. Comparative salary documentation can really help to strengthen your request.

17. If request is turned down

Even after making the most convincing case for a salary hike chances are it might still be turned down. Before you leave ask as nicely as you can without showing anger or hurt why this is so. You definitely deserve to know why.

Doing so will help you understand if there are chances you will get promoted in the near future or not. Try to ask as many questions as you can to fully understand your boss’ point of view on your career path.

18. Move on

If you have been working for decades, adding your skills, experience and education, a flat no to your request for a pay hike and a promotion can be a little bit harsh. This can happen after you have done your home work and received a better offer from a rival or a similar company. If this happens and you feel you need something better, simply begin a job search after leaving the performance and salary review meeting. There’s a big chance better things lie yonder.

What’s next?

We want this list to be growing with your own tips from every industries. Leave a coment below and tell us how you got a promotion. How did you do and what can help others to succeed?

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