Get that Raise, feel empowered.
It’s no secret, it’s a strange time and a strange world out there. And the workplace is no different. But all of this insanity might provide the best opportunity for you to get that raise you’ve been desperately wanting for the past months or even years.
Just over two years ago, I made a career change into an industry I never even could have imagined. I really only took the job thinking it was a quick stepping stone until I found the career I thought I wanted.
Turns out because it was something completely different, I actually found that I enjoyed the industry and moving from sitting at a desk all day into the hard, manual labor of slinging heavy steel plates somehow felt fulfilling. Truth be told, I liked the job and I enjoyed being around the guys I worked with.
But I don’t have the personality where I’d be satisfied with tossing around heavy plates for the rest of my life, not to mention having been in my late 30’s at the time. That shit aint easy.
Nah, when I start something, I’ve got to take charge, take control and make it my own. So, I did. I got my ass to work and made that small department my own. Without any experience, I set it up how I believed it would run most efficiently and I began training new hires on how operations ran.
Within three months, I was able to get that raise.
That one was based on merit and hard work and it felt empowering to be rewarded in such a short time frame, but I knew I was worth more.
Over the course of the next two years, I would be promoted four times and accumulate seven raises to essentially double my income.
So, How did I Get That Raise?
Take Note of the Environment.
I started off by asking questions of everyone who worked there, who had way more experience than I had and began taking an interest in the work that they did even though it had nothing to do with my position in the company.
Instead of going to work with the attitude of being better than others or not getting my way in life; thereby, ending up in a seemingly low level job, I went in every day curious.
In addition, I took note of the job market as a whole.
Surely, you’ve noticed things are… different. And this upheaval in the number of people who want to come into an office or work at all could create a huge opportunity for you.
When I first started with the company, there was a surprisingly high turnover rate. Guys would come in, work a day or two and then either not show up or walk out the door. It was the strangest thing. I’d never seen anything like it.
Couple that with the onset of a global pandemic where everyone and their brother is hiring and no one wants to work. Guess a couple extra in the unemployment check was more appealing.
I show up. I’m reliable. I’m inquisitive. I had something to prove.
Know the work environment. If your company is in a position where you are more valuable than you know, you’re in a good position to get that raise.
Get Chummy with the Boss.
Believe it or not, your boss is a human too. Whether he’s a dick or not, he’s human. Which means, there’s a soft side in there and it’s your job to get to that gooey center.
The boss wasn’t born into the position he holds. Keeping with that inquisitive mind, it might be a good idea to find out how he got to where he is. Everyone likes to talk about their accomplishments, shine a light on your boss’ triumphs and learn from his experience.
My boss was a real hard ass, at least that’s the impression he chose to give off. Two weeks after starting, he threatened to fire me in front of everyone in the shop. Quickly, I realized this was an egomaniac with an inferiority complex. He needed to exude his alpha dominance and mark his territory.
About an hour later, he came and apologized – privately, of course.
Now, this might not seem like a great situation- but I saw it as a huge win. It proved there was more to him than he lead on.
Slowly, over months, I began asking questions about his experience and expertise in the industry. If there was something I didn’t understand, I asked him. If I had questions about the construction process or steel fabrication, I asked him. Anything I could do to make myself seen and known as the guy who “takes an interest.”
But here’s the kicker, you’ve got to take a genuine interest. If you’re faking it, they’ll smell the bullshit.
Better Enjoy the Job.
We’ve all had jobs that we hate. Where the thought of going into the office or the shop or into the restaurant immediately causes you intense stress and anxiety. Maybe you get a sickening in the pit of your stomach.
I’ve been there. It’s never a good situation to be in.
I was working in the sales department of a budding media company down in Ft. Myers, Florida. I’d done sales before, so getting the job wasn’t such a big deal. And it was in media, so I had a general interest.
Unfortunately, along with the position came a boss that was certifiably bat-shit crazy. Legit, she was popping Xanax like they were Tic-Tacs.
She made mine and my co-worker’s lives a living hell to the point where neither of us could go in without being on pins and needles. Wondering when the next storm of crazy was going to blow our way.
It was my fault for staying as long as I did. And truth be told, I got fired because I finally cracked and stood up for myself.
There was no way I was going to make anything of myself in that company. That was clear.
On the other hand, I genuinely like and have an interest in the job I have now and it shows.
The energy you bring into a job shows and as cliche as it sounds, a positive attitude goes a long way to get that raise.
Time to grab your balls and open your mouth.
The truth of the matter is your boss isn’t going to know what you’re thinking or what you’re feeling if you don’t communicate. So if you want to get that raise, you’ve got to ask for it.
Make sure the timing is right. You don’t want to storm your boss’ office when he’s in the middle of a billion things – this is where knowing the environment comes in handy.
Level with your boss – creating that relationship with him will make this much easier.
Leave your personal feelings and struggles out of it. Getting a raise is about feeling valued for the work that you do. Keep it that way. So, if you’re in debt up to your ass, if you’re kid has a tuition bill due, if your partner is constantly pissed off at you because you’re not making enough – that isn’t his problem.
Bringing up your drama puts you in a position of weakness and when you are trying to get that raise, you need to be in a stance of authority.
Take a deep breath and walk into your boss’ office with the facts:
Why do you deserve the raise?
How can you getting the raise benefit the company?
What additional responsibilities have you taken on?
What are your short-term and long-term goals within the company?
Let’s face it. The boss has one job and it’s not to make sure you’re happy with your finances. His only job is to make the company more profitable. And your raise makes his job harder.
Attitude: You deserve the raise. You’ve earned the raise. Understand that along with the facts. Without being cocky.
Don’t be surprised if your boss tells you it’s not the right time or needs time to think about it. There are budgeting issues, human resources and upper management to deal with. Make sure your boss knows you understand this and put the power in your hands by telling him you’ll follow up in a few days for his decision.
But Never accept a flat out “No” without explanation.
Be Prepared to Walk.
I’ve seen it a number of times, in the shop, where guys go in to demand a raise because they feel entitled, rather than validity of the work they do. Then when they don’t get their way, they use quitting as a bargaining chip.
It never works. And, in most cases, the guys prove they were only filled with empty promises and they go back to their stations with their tail between their legs.
Knowing you can walk away is an empowering feeling and can be used to build up your confidence when you want to get that raise. But threatening to quit during the negotiation process only hurts your credibility.
There are a million jobs out there. You survived before getting the job, you’ll survive afterwards.
But one common mistake is believing a raise will make you like a job.
When you get that raise, it may satisfy you for a short period of time but soon that feeling of triumph will fade away and all of the reasons you felt stuck, or dread at having to go into that damn place will come crashing back and you’ll be in the same position you started in.
You spend at least 25% of your life at work, more than likely it’s way more than that. You deserve to spend that time somewhere and doing something you feel valued for, something that brings you a sense of accomplishment and happiness.
That is True Empowerment. That will help you get that raise.
Discover the Exact Formula I used to create Financial Empowerment in my Life with this FREE WEBINAR.
Joshua D. Abel
Men’s Empowerment Network