The two little words you should never use when asking for a raise

Posted by
Moya Crockett
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Even if you’re fairly certain you’re not being paid enough for the work that you do, the thought of asking for a pay rise can strike fear into the heart of the most confident of women.  Talking about money doesn’t come naturally to most Brits in the first place – and then there’s the double-bind of being female (research has shown that women are 11% less likely than men to avoid higher wage negotiations).

But according to Ann Pickering, HR director at O2, you might be eligible for a bigger pay packet sooner than you think.

“If you’ve taken on more responsibility, met and exceed targets and proved yourself a true asset to your employer, you may well be eligible for a raise,” she tells Stylist

However, certain ways of approaching the issue will get better results than others – and according to one business expert, there’s one simple phrase that everyone should avoid when trying to negotiate a new salary.

Lynn Taylor, author of Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant, recently told Business Insider that two tiny words can scupper your chances of getting a pay rise: “I need”.

According to Taylor, telling your boss that you need more money – for whatever reason that might be – is a major misstep. 

Instead of telling your bosses why you need a raise, Taylor recommends addressing the following four points when negotiating a better pay packet:

  • How your work has increasingly contributed to department or company goals
  • How your responsibilities have increased significantly
  • What concrete achievements you have accomplished
  • The market rate for your type of position.

“Ideally, a manager wants to feel that you’ve already been doing the work that warrants a higher salary for some period of time… It should not be an aspirational request,” says Taylor. Because, she says, “savvy interviewers and bosses don’t think in terms of being charitable.

“While they may be sympathetic to your cause, they must evaluate starting salaries and increases based on business criteria.” 

Images: iStock