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Should You Ask for a Raise Now?

Asking for a raise used to be a fairly touchy subject to begin with. You got nervous just thinking about approaching your superior to broach the subject. You rehearsed the lines in your head, trying to figure out what was just the right mix of forcefulness and modesty, humbleness and conviction that you were well worth the money you would be getting paid if you were given this new requested bump in pay.

Well, you thought the jitters were bad before the economy went into a free fall in 2008, now asking for a raise in certain environments is sort of a big joke, or at the very least, not considered to be the best career move if your business has been adversely affected to the Nth degree by this recession. I know in my day job, I really don’t even think about approaching that subject.

One, because we have a job that is designed around scheduled yearly and sometimes biyearly reviews where our salaries are reviewed and potentially adjusted for things like performance and cost of living adjustments. And two, because we just generally don’t have that kind of environment here, I don’t know why, but most of the people in my work group just generally don’t ask for raises. Maybe it’s that we’re content with what me make or feel that we are already fairly compensated, I don’t know.

For me personally, I just don’t feel the need to ask for one because I feel that it’s adequate, then again, I have a second line of income to fall back on, and I know that not everyone is like that. But what if your job is the only lifeline of money you have coming in? And what if you have taken on gobs of new job responsibilities in the wake of layoffs of coworkers, downsizing, or generally higher volumes of work? Should you feel justified in asking for more compensation then?

I think that you should, it’s just a matter of how you go about it. You do want to do some research beforehand. Make sure you know what people who are doing jobs similar to yours are making in general. Many companies now don’t make salaries, or at least salary ranges, a huge secret. So, you may have some numbers to start with if you’re looking at asking for a certain amount. Make sure you also know if you are indeed doing more work than coworkers who hold the same title as you and make the same money as you.

You have to have solid rationalization for asking for more money, and this may help your case when you go to the boss woman or man and ask them for it. If you go in prepared, and you know what you want and why you deserve it, then you boost your cahnces of getting that coveted extra pay on every paycheck.

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