Asking for a pay rise can be a difficult task, but sometimes listening to other’s experiences can be just what you need to establish a plan and build confidence to take the step.

This month, ms money shares a few experiences of other women to help you out.

Communications assistant, Michelle “Getting ready for the yearly performance review always gets me on edge. Anyway, last time I resolved to take the time to do some thinking about what I have achieved this year, my strengths etc and present my view confidently. Confidently enough that I can ask about getting a pay rise.”

“So I did just that. I was so prepared for the meeting I actually felt quite good going into it. And it went well…But as soon as a couple of areas where my boss thought I could improve were brought up, I lost all my resolve. Drained right out of me. So, I didn’t say anything. What is that all about?”

Susan’s comments: Areas for improvement are not a reason to not ask for a pay rise. If you are doing a good job across most areas and it is time for a rise, you owe it to yourself to value your contribution and ask. Yes, you might be told no, but by asking you have opened the discussion and you can find out why and a plan of attack.

Freelance marketing consultant, Lisa “I am self-employed so I guess I am very much the driver of whether I get paid enough. Something that really hit home the other day was when I sent a quote to a potential client and they came back quick as anything and told me I was not charging enough! Classic! A good giggle with the girls, but a valuable lesson too.”

Susan’s comments: A valuable lesson in valuing yourself. It is so common for women not to value their time or contribution. I am not advocating charging soaring rates or asking for pay rises that are unrealistic, but give yourself some credit and earn what you deserve.

Office manager, Julie “My job is pretty much a bit of everything. Managing diaries, working with suppliers and keeping things like IT and phone working the way they should, organising catering – you name it, I turn my hand to it. I was finding it really hard to get the guts up to ask for a pay rise and really felt like I was not valued. Unfortunately, instead of talking to my boss about it, I got annoyed and said a few things to other people in the office. The upshot, my boss called me in for a meeting and wasn’t very happy that I complaining without first talking to him. Anyway, long story short, I got a pay rise and learnt a good lesson. I like where I work and really should have been upfront about how I was feeling.”

Susan’s comments: Generally speaking, women tend to shy away from talking to their employees about their pay, and instead will often vent their annoyance with friends and sometimes colleagues. While we can all empathise with this, it doesn’t really help the situation in the end, and sometimes can just make it worse. The only thing to do is prepare yourself and have the conversation with those that can make a difference. Then you know where you stand.


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