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JF0Flag for United States of America

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How to ask for a raise, more specifically, how to ask for a larger raise?

Hi Experts,

I come to you in hopes you can give me some guidance on my situation. I am in my mid 20s and have never had to "ask" for a raise before. A little background before my question: Through my teens and early 20s I worked for myself doing various computer (contract) work--fixing PCs, web design, etc. My first "office" job I negotiated a salary and just about every aspect of my position. I worked there for about 6 months before my manager (and virtually everyone she hired was let go as well.)

I decided to start over and except a technical support position with a small software company. I knew I didn't want to do tech support and my plan was to work my way up the chain - told the boss during the interview process that I wanted his job within 5 years. The pay was low, and came with a $3k raise after 90 days (you're official now.) I was promoted after a year or so to department manager which came with a small raise and have since received a small raise the following 2 years at Xmas time. I did NOT receive a raise this year (although I got a nice cash bonus) and was told we will be having Performance Reviews now starting in late January. I know i will receive the highest grade possible as my boss has told me several times that he wants to "train me to take over his position" although that has yet to happen.

I have now been there almost 4 years and am making $13k more than I was originally hired for (including the $3k raise after 90 days.) I believe my value to the company is much greater than my current compensation. I would like to ask for a good size raise, about $15k. My question is, what if I go to my performance review and he tells me something like "You have done a great job, so I am giving you a $3k raise." What is the best way to respond to something like this?

I appreciate all of the advice in advance.
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One last thought. Many people will tell you to use a job offer as a lever to get a better salary. This sometimes works, but it generally doesn't make anyone happy in the long term, including the other company that went to all the effort to interview you and make you an offer. It's a high risk strategy.

Also, small companies are fun, but they are limiting in the experience they can provide. IMHO, you are better off moving to a different company (of whatever size) that can provide you new and different experiences.
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If you have a close friend that works there, maybe that friend, could casually put a bug in the bosses ear......of course the friend needs to be further up the ladder than you, and someone who has a level at which they can communicate with the boss.

Someone higher up the ladder, is able to comfortably speak to the boss about most anything. The boss "creates-allows" this comfort zone.

And a casual comment like, "Joe sure is doing a good job for us, I'm sure he would welcome a salary review."

Any subtle threat to leave, is a high risk.

Do research and find out what the same position pays, at similar companies as yours. Maybe your current salary is in line.

Your salary is increasing by about $3000 a year. That is $250 a month and it may seem like peanuts, but it is not.