Step 1: Prepare
Learning how to properly negotiate can be very beneficial. However, there is a lot of work involved—even before you start talking to the other person!
As the saying goes, “knowledge is power.” You’ll want to go into the negotiation prepared, which means—you guessed it—research!
Make sure you know your market value. Research a salary range and pick the top of the range to ask your boss for. This number acts as an anchor, which will influence subsequent offers.
Another tip is to pick a specific number. Researchers have found that more specific numbers are more believable and seem more realistic than whole numbers. For example, if you mention $73,800 instead of $70,000, it seems more researched than a ballpark estimate.
Showcase Your Accomplishments
After doing your research, you’ll want to compile a list of your accomplishments in the workplace. Showcase all the work you’ve done to draw focus on your positive performance. This will increase your perceived value, which can lead to a better salary.
Make Some Promises
If you’re patient, you can set up a meeting with your boss. Ask your boss what tasks or duties you could take on to show them the value you bring to the company. Highlight all the tasks you would like to accomplish within a certain timeframe. Make sure to send regular progress updates. Remember to also be transparent; mention that you would like a salary increase sometime in the future, but you want this chance to prove yourself.
This demonstrates to your boss your dedication, commitment, and follow-through. Instead of working from behind-the-scenes, you can give real-time updates to show the value of your work.
Set up a follow-up meeting and ask your boss for some form of compensation. You’re much more likely to obtain a salary increase after achieving the work-related goals that you set together.
Part of being prepared is rehearsing what you are going to ask. This way, if your boss has any reservations, you will have the perfect answer ready. This makes you sound professional, and shows that you put thought into what you say.
Step 2: Ask
Get in the Zone
Dressing in the right clothing can help give you the confidence boost that you need! Do whatever you need to feel confident, professional, and prepared—whether that be wearing a new blazer, power posing, or even treating yourself to a fancy coffee in the morning.
Focus on Your Achievements
Highlighting your accomplishments with the company can start the meeting with a positive mood. This also helps increase your value, which can make asking for a salary increase seem less daunting.
Other than your big ask, remember to use questions to your advantage. Find out what your boss needs from you and how you can improve. When you showcase your accomplishments, ask what your boss liked or disliked about your work. You can ask them if they have any recommendations or advice. This demonstrates your willingness to learn, improve, and grow in the workplace—which can all lead to getting a “yes” for a salary increase.
Don’t Pressure Your Boss or Threaten to Leave
It’s likely you and your boss both hope you will have a long future within the company. There’s no need to pressure your boss or rush the decision. Make goals together; set a timeframe for tasks to be accomplished in the next few weeks, and be transparent when communicating what worked and what didn’t. This facilitates a cooperative approach, which won’t leave your boss feeling defensive.