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When Is It Okay to Ask for a Raise?
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Student Contributor
Posted March 14, 2018
Applying for a loan is one of the few times in your adult life you’ll ask for money (unless you ask your parents for some cash for gas here and there, too). What about a raise? Is that something you ask for, or is it handed to you? Truthfully, it just depends. Asking for a bump in your salary may sound like an awkward and scary conversation. The tricky part is knowing when and how to bring it up. Take a look here to see whether or not it’s time for you to negotiate your salary!
1. Perform a self-evaluation
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Do you actually deserve a raise? If you answer “yes” to most of the questions below, chances are the answer is “yes” to that question, too.
Are you performing well at your job consistently?

- Are you going above and beyond your expectations?

- Is your company in a good financial state/well-established?

- Do you take on leadership roles? Are you sought for advice?

Evaluating yourself and understanding your worth in the company is a great first step in determining whether or not you should consider asking for a raise.
2. Is the timing right?
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If your company is hitting a rough patch financially or making layoffs left and right, it’s probably a good idea to delay asking for a raise during this time. Understanding the state of your company, its policies, whether or not your company is meeting its financial goals, and the current market rate for someone doing your job is important to consider before approaching the conversation.
3. Ask for it
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If you’ve evaluated your job performance and have done your research about your company and pay rates, it’s time to use this information to your advantage and ask for a raise. Come to your boss with:

- a list of goals you’ve accomplished

- additional responsibilities you’ve taken on

- a pay increase goal

During this conversation, it’s important to have prepared and to be straightforward with your boss. Ultimately, your goal is to convince and prove that your work has gone above and beyond the usual annual pay raise. If your employer isn’t on board, it’s okay. Instead, ask how to qualify for the highest possible pay raises and bonuses in the future. If you ask appropriately and at the right time, you have nothing to lose. You won’t know unless you do!
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