The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reports that, “U.S. wage growth is set to pick up over the next year, as economists expect a tight labor market will continue to push up workers’ pay.” According to the article 70% of economists are predicting unprecedented growth over the next year.
These predictions aren’t limited to the United States. Statista predicts sizeable wage growth across numerous countries around the world with Ukraine, Turkey, and India all expected to grow at greater than five percent. Just yesterday, the BBC reported that, “wage growth beat market and economist expectations in the three months from February to April.”
Of course, these growth numbers will be offset with adjustment for inflation, but that withstanding, many people around the world are expected to have more money in their pockets over the next 12 months.
What About You?
It’s highly possible that you are asking yourself, I’m glad that people around the world will be making more money, but will I see any of that?
That questions is 100% reasonable. After all, you work hard. Your costs are going up. You are trying to provide for yourself and others in your life. You should expect a shot at your share of the expanding pie.
You have a couple of choices:
- Wait for an email to arrive from your boss announcing your generous pay raise.
- Make an ill-prepared effort to ask for a raise and see what happens.
- Prepare yourself for a compensation conversation with your boss and make a sound argument for a raise.
If you decide to go with choices one or two, you can stop reading now. However, if you are willing to give option three a go, I encourage you to read on…
The Challenge for Many of Us
Regardless of how strong your relationship is with your direct supervisor, you likely feel awkward bringing up the topic of compensation. A study from Ally Bank, found that 70% of people find it rude or awkward to discuss money in social settings. If we are uncomfortable discussing money with the people we choose to interact with outside of work, it’s no surprise that we don’t want to discuss money at work either.
Four things to keep in mind the next time you ask for a raise.
1. Know that asking for a raise is normal
If you have been with the company for at least a year, then it is expected that you would ask for a raise. Your manager will likely not be surprised when you request to schedule a conversation around compensation. As you progress within an organization and take on more responsibility, it is completely reasonable to discuss whether or not your efforts and compensation are aligned.
2. Be able to articulate your worth
Before asking for a raise, you should know exactly what you bring to your organization. Be able to provide concrete numbers of how you’ve impacted the bottom line, customer feedback, and any other data relative to your industry. It may also be useful to research the market value of your position across competitors.
3. Practice your pitch
You should never walk into this type of conversation unprepared. Practice with a trusted friend, your dog, or even in the mirror! You want to exude a humble confidence throughout the conversation, and that is something that can only come through preparation.
4. Express gratitude
Whether or not you receive a raise, you should be genuinely grateful that your supervisor is willing to spend the time discussing it with you. Entitlement and arrogance will never help you sell your worth, but a grateful attitude and clear message certainly will. Plus, if you carry yourself well during this conversation, your manager will be more likely to consider you for a raise when he or she has a bit more in the budget.
Patrick Leddin, PhD is a speaker, global leadership consultant, and The Wall Street Journal bestselling author of The Five-Week Leadership Challenge. Patrick is an Associate Professor at Vanderbilt University with a thriving leadership blog and podcast, and 25-years of leadership experience. He offers an unparalleled mix of academic rigor and real-world experience.