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PayScale’s VIP Blog Roundup: Insulted By Your Raise? Maybe Don’t Yell at the Boss

Topics: Negotiation

During a long enough career, most of us will wish for at least one do-over day, when mistakes and missteps are cancelled out and we get to start all over again. In this week’s salary negotiation-themed blog roundup (in honor of PayScale’s Salary Negotiation Guide!), we look at one Ask a Manager reader who’s probably wishing for a mulligan, plus tips on what to do when your co-workers are paid more than you, and a few salary negotiation strategies you’ve probably never heard of before.


(Photo Credit: _J_D_R_/Flickr)

Do You Know What You're Worth?

Alison Green at Ask a Manager: “I Feel Insulted by My Raise – and I Let My Boss Know It

Eight percent of people who don’t negotiate salary refrain from asking because they’re afraid that they’ll lose their jobs. That’s why it’s important to prepare for the discussion – how you ask for more money can go a long way toward getting you what you ask for, and preserving your employment situation into the bargain. There’s definitely a right way and a wrong way to ask for more money.

For an example of the wrong way, see this question from an Ask a Manager reader:

Last month, I had my first performance review at my first job out of college.

Despite overwhelmingly positive feedback (98/100 points) and that fact that the company boasted their “best year to date,” I got a pretty abysmal raise of just 0.5%. But the worst part was the way my manager conveyed it, with an enthusiastic “congratulations!” and saying this is the best raise he’s ever given to someone “at my level.” I responded with “do you think I’m stupid?” I pointed out that this hardly even adjusts my salary for inflation and I said that I deserve to know if my work performance is subpar in any way.

Needless to say, the reader’s relationship with their boss deteriorated pretty quickly afterward. Their questions: is there anything to do at this point, to fix things – and also, isn’t that really a pretty lousy raise?

Green’s response – which hilariously and appropriately begins with “Ooof” – will help you figure out a better way to react to any bad news at work, and possibly to repair your relationship with your boss if you’ve made a similar mistake. It also contains insight into why a “good raise” might look so different to people sitting on different sides of the desk.

Alison Doyle at Career Tool Belt: What Can You When Your Co-Workers Are Paid More Money?

“What can you do if you discover that your co-workers are getting paid more than you are for the same or a similar job?” Doyle writes. “Besides complaining to yourself and griping about the fact that life isn’t fair? Pay equity issues, and strategies to address any inequities, will vary by your employment situation. In general though, it’s tricky.”

Doyle’s advice, which includes researching fair pay for your position and using internal pay equity processes to your advantage, will be welcome to anyone who doesn’t exactly feel like starting a revolution at work, but would still like to be paid market rate for their hard work.

Penelope Trunk at her blog: Strategies That Will Change the Way You Negotiate

Trunk is never afraid to give controversial advice. For example, no one else will tell you this about salary negotiation:

Men who have daughters are more empathetic and are more likely to give you a raise. So if you have a choice, send a request their way. Also, power makes people less generous, so you are also more likely to get concessions from someone who just recently rose to power, rather than someone who is a long-standing part of the power establishment.

Her other advice, which includes finding the weak link in a salary negotiation chain and embracing conflict, is worth a read before you head into your next negotiation.

Tell Us What You Think

Do you negotiate salary? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

Jen Hubley Luckwaldt
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