8 Important Steps When Asking For A Pay Rise

Apr 26

Written By

The Daily Guru Team

Asking for a pay rise is something most people dread – but when we shy away from negotiating our salary, we are also walking away from lots of other opportunities, such as; increased pay, additional flexible working hours and other employment benefits. Many shy away from it because it feels uncomfortable – we haven’t been taught how to ask and negotiate on this topic. And money can be a particularly awkward one…

If women want to have a strong influence in closing the pay gap – this is something we all need to become masters at! Asking confidently & assertively for a raise we know we deserve!!



Knowing how to ask for what you want is critical and with some strategising & important planning, asking the question doesn’t need to be complicated.

In this article we break the process down into 8 easy steps for you. So let’s dive in!

Asking for a Pay Rise

Asking for a Pay Rise with 8 Key Steps!

1. Don’t ask – don’t get

The very first thing we want to realise is that if we dont ask – the answer is definitely “no”.  In life, we often hold back expressing our needs as we worry about the other person’s reaction or what they will think of us.

When you think about it, what’s the worst thing that could happen if you ask for a pay rise? They say no.  How bad would that actual moment be?  If you let yourself contemplate that you will realise nothing is ever as bad as our unconscious fears would lead us to believe. So don’t let fear hold you back.

Equally, if it’s a no, find out what would need to change for their response to change. Do they need to see more strategic contribution or for you to have more ownership on key projects?

If they say they don’t know, ask them if you can reconvene once they have had time to reflect.  This will show your manager how seriously you are taking this conversation.


2. Know Your Value

Before you ask for a pay rise, you need to consider:

  • How much you have achieved in your role, and provide examples/proof of these achievements.
  • If your role has expanded with more duties and responsibilities, this will help with your request.
  • If you can demonstrate a greater rate of efficiency.
  • If you can demonstrate an increase in revenue generation and performance.
  • Suppose you are being underpaid for your role or level of experience. Conduct some market research to determine this.
  • If you deserve a pay rise, and why.

Answering these question will help you become clear and confident in the Value you are offering and offer tangible justification to why you are asking for a Pay Rise.


3. Pick your timing

Most organisations have performance and pay review cycles, and it helps to know how that process works.

You ideally want to discuss your Pay Rise before budgets for the new financial year are locked in.

You will also want to pick a time when your boss is more likely to be receptive, rather than tired, stressed or distracted. So at the end of a very busy week, when everyone in the team (including you) is exhausted and ready for the weekend to begin… is definitely not the best time.

Negotiating is mentally taxing, meaning you want to be on your A-Game AND you want you manager to feel alert and focussed too.  Going into the discussion when you are tired or stressed risks you not having the outcome you had desired

4. Build your case

As mentioned in point two, be clear on the value you bring to your role, how you demonstrate it and what value that brings to your Team & Organisation?

Use evidence and data to explain why you deserve a pay rise. You want to be reasonable with your request so find out the comparative rates in the industry. This means you’ll be confident that your request is realistic.

5. Know their needs

Take time to put yourself in your managers shoes and ask yourself, “What would they need to hear from me to believe this pay rise is necessary?”

Think about whats on their agenda, what are their needs and what do they care about? The more you know those involved, the more significant insights you’ll have into what they are likely to support or reject.

When you make the request, state your wants objectively and in a way that will resonate with your boss or whoever you are negotiating with. Make sure to also explain how this will benefit the organisation.

6. Consider possible trade-offs

You may not get exactly what you want from the negotiation so be prepared to consider other options vs just asking for a Pay Rise. To be able to negotiate these other items in a meaningful way, take some time before your meeting and ask yourself;

What else matters the most to you? (i.e.Money/performance bonuses, Recognition, Growth, Training & Development, Promotion, Work life balance, Annual Leave?)

What might you be willing to give up as part of the negotiation process? (i.e you may be willing to trade time for money or money for more holidays)

7. Think about the full process

How might the negotiation process unfold? What may be required to secure an agreement? Think about each of these steps in advance of the discussion. Running through possible scenarios and outcomes will enable you to respond better as issues or objections are raised during the discussion.  Equally, don’t over think it… Analysis Paralysis can take over and we never click into taking action.  So think it through…. but then take action!

8. Slow down

If you are someone who gets nervous about these types of conversations and you find your mind racing during the negotiation, focus on breathing and breathing deeply. This helps your nerves relax and your heart rate to slow, making it easier to reflect and respond calmly.

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We hope this article has been helpful and we wish you the best of luck in asking for a Pay Rise!

Asking for a Pay Rise

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I'm Rebecca Sparks - Founder of The Daily Guru. I'm also a Self Development Coach,
a Speaker and a Podcaster. 

What drives me most in life is a fascination & curiosity with how we can make the most of our short time here on this planet.  How do we make our lives feel meaningful? How can we make life feel fulfilling?  And how can we turn these elements into a lifestyle? 

My mission is to help women explore these topics and to design a life that taps into all of their essentials.

more about me

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