How To Ask For A Raise Without Feeling Super Awkward

In a perfect world it wouldn’t be necessary to ask for a raise. Our bosses would already know our value, and they would spontaneously offer us bonuses to thank us for our tireless work. Oh, and we’d have perfect hair and hangovers wouldn’t exist.

But it’s not a perfect world. No matter how hard you work, you also have to hustle if you want your salary to grow. And that can feel a bit… icky. Some of us weren’t born with a knack for negotiating – not to mention how awkward it can feel to talk about money.

If that’s you, know that you’re not alone. In fact, one of Australia’s top bankers, RBA chief Philip Lowe, has urged employers to demand pay rises – to keep the economy growing. If you won’t do it for yourself, do it for the economy.

Here’s how it’s done.

#1 Time it right

If you’ve taken on extra responsibilities, or you’re due for your yearly performance review, then the time is ripe to ask for a raise. If neither of those things are happening but you’ve been consistently performing well, then the end of financial year – or whenever your workplace considers their budget – could work well.

Also, pick a day and time when your boss is more likely to be open to the idea. Monday morning? Not a good idea. Friday evening? No way. In fact, psychologists suggest Friday morning is the best time if you’re hoping for a ‘yes’.

Once you’ve decided on a time, shoot your boss an email or a calendar invite.

#2 Arm yourself with information

If you want to convince your employer to give you more money, you need to convince them that you’re worth it – and provide some evidence. It’s time to gather a list of achievements: projects where you’ve over delivered, all the KPIs you’ve knocked out of the park. Actual numbers are super helpful here – if you can give figures, percentages or actual dollar signs, your boss is more likely to translate your achievements into a higher salary.

Putting all of this down on paper – a copy for you and a copy for your boss – will help guide the conversation, and will give you a backup if you get nervous.

#3 Script it

If you’re someone who gets flustered in awkward situations (if you aren’t, I envy you) then it’s best to have a few key points in mind, so you can guide the conversation. The most important point? How much money you’d like to get. You’ve got to be clear about what you want: being confident about what you want is key to convincing your boss that they should give you a raise. Practice a few times in front of the mirror – if you can handle the awkwardness of that, you can handle the real thing, no sweat.

Now that your paycheck is bigger, why not make your money work harder for you? Westpac’s e-saver account offers a competitive interest rate on savings, so you can watch your balance grow even bigger. It’s like giving your bank account a promotion.

Things you should know: Please ensure that the above account is appropriate for you.

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