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How to get a raise in 3 months - Dream Job

This is very similar to Yale's recommended approach to negotiating for a raise, only a bit of a shorter approach and format.

Here’s what Ramit says most people might say to their boss to ask for a raise:

Your Email

Hi Susan,

I’d like to request some time with you to discuss my current performance on hitting the key metrics our team has established this quarter. I believe I’ve been hitting expectations, but I want to make sure my expectations are aligned with yours, and if possible, further discuss how else I can be contributing more to our team and company goals.

Can we find 30 minutes in the next few weeks to talk about this?


And, to that approach, he says:

“Can you expect to get the raise right then and there from that [requested] conversation? Actually...NO! 

That’s the script you can use to proactively START the conversation, but asking for a raise requires a lot more steps. In fact, I recommend planning and preparing at least three months ahead of your performance review. Why? Well, if you were the boss, who would you rather give a raise to? 

Person A who simply says, ‘I do my work and I deserve it!’; or Person B who gives you a detailed document of all the results they’ve achieved in the last 3 to 6 months, as well as a few pages listing out what they plan to do in the next 6 months to solve the company’s pain points? 

The answer seems clear, and it’s the difference between showing versus telling. That’s why three months before you ask for a raise, you’ll start to track everything you do at work and the results you get

This is important because the key to getting a raise is remembering that it’s not about you. It’s about what you can do for your employer [WIIFT]. You can’t just simply tell them you need more money because you have to pay your bills. Nobody cares, unfortunately! BUT make them care by showing how your work has been clearly (and directly) contributing to the company’s success. 

And THEN you can ask to be compensated fairly.”

Step 1: 3-6 months before you ask for a raise

“Start tracking your results in a document or spreadsheet and record hard, tangible numbers (e.g., acquired 1,546 leads in October). Make sure you’re emphasizing things you’ve DONE, not only things you plan to do [the potential bias]. While you do this, use the script above to email your boss and request a meeting with them to discuss ways you can excel at work.

At this meeting, make it clear you want to exceed expectations and ask what that would entail.” 

And, here, Ramit recommends you say something like:

Boss: “So what do you want to talk about?”

You: “I know that one of our company goals is to get an average of 16,000 leads per month. So far the work I have been doing with the team has hit this goal the last 3 months. I’m interested in continuing to meet this goal, as well as explore different ways to even exceed our goals. As part of this meeting, I would like to get your thoughts on what it would take to get a 10/10 performance that comes with an appropriate raise. I want to make sure my expectations are aligned with yours so I can work toward that. Is this something we can discuss?”

Step 2: 2 months before you ask for a raise

“The first thing to focus on is meeting with your boss again, showing her what you’ve been tracking, and asking what you could do better. This is to make sure that you and your boss are aligned, and that there are no surprises. You also want to make sure you’re on the right track with your work, and be able to communicate that to your boss.”

Here, Ramit provides this script:

Boss: “What can I help you with?”

You: “Last we spoke, we talked about expectations for what a 10/10 in my performance looks like. Well, I’ve been tracking my results on this document, and I wanted to make sure that the direction I’m going with these initiatives and results are on track with what we discussed.”

“The second thing is to find a goal salary you want to hit. Research,, and and find out the average industry pay for your job. This is part of making a strong case for your raise. And only then can you properly and effectively negotiate the salary you want. 

I want to stress something important here: Your boss should NEVER be surprised by you asking for a promotion or a raise. Make it clear, and make sure you are working together to get there [using collaborative frames].”

Step 3: 1 month before you ask for a raise

“Your goal now is to offer proof that you’re driving the metrics that matter to your boss, and show that you’re a great investment for that raise. And the way to show that is The Briefcase Technique. This is an advanced technique that has earned hundreds of IWT students extra tens of thousands of dollars. It’s a powerful technique -- use it with care. 

[Ramit shares multiple resources on how to assemble your own in Dream Job. And, he shares the Briefcase Technique proposals that other IWT students have put together and used to negotiate and get raises for themselves.]

Approach the proposal as if it would be the most compelling document they’ve ever received — complete with issues that they know about and how YOU are the person to solve those problems.” 

Once you’re ready with your Briefcase Technique proposal, here’s how Ramit says you might approach the meeting:

Boss: “So what are you thinking for a raise?”

You: “Actually, before we continue this discussion, I’d love to show you something I put together.”

“And then you literally pull out your [physical or virtual] proposal detailing the pain points of the company and EXACTLY how you can help them. (IWT bonus points if you actually use a briefcase.) The theatrics of pulling out a stack of papers alone is often enough to impress your boss! And by identifying the pain points the company is experiencing in your proposal, you can show the boss where specifically you’re going to add value — making you a very valuable hire.”

Step 4: 1 month before you ask for a raise

“It’s time for all that work over the last few months to pay off. Remember: 80% of the work has been done before you even walk into your boss’ office -- and now you just need to wrap it all up together with practice.

Practice making your case and let your boss figure out the numbers. You might even practice several scenarios, where you’re given a raise within, just outside, or way off your ballpark number."

Here’s a script Ramit recommends practicing if your boss offers you shy of what you were expecting:

You: “First of all, thank you—I’m excited to have been recognized for the hard work I’ve been doing and I think we’ve been in consistent communication about expectations for what it would take to get to that 10/10. From my research, it looks like the standard range is from $70,000-$90,000 -- and actually towards the higher end for someone with the work I’ve been doing, and WILL be doing with the proposal I showed you last time we spoke. I’d like to discuss that range.”

Or, if it doesn’t go as planned, he recommends responding with:

You: “First of all, thank you—I’m thrilled to have been recognized for the hard work I’ve been doing. I have to be honest, though. It looks like this was off what I was expecting for my salary. Based on my research, it shows that for someone in my position with the responsibilities I would be taking on typically makes closer to $88,000 -- and I would like to discuss a compensation that reflects that.”

And, Ramit's final note:

“Remember: A negotiation isn’t supposed to be adversarial. You’re simply stating your case and working together to come to a mutually beneficial agreement. And, most important, remember to be enthusiastic and smile. Good luck, I know you can do this!”

*Note: After Matthew's feedback on the usage of the color red to highlight value-taking behavior, I opted to highlight the "Boss" as green in order to promote a more collaborative approach. And, reading this back, I think it works well.

Lucio Buffalmano has reacted to this post.
Lucio Buffalmano

Thank you for sharing this, Ali!

Will definitely come back to this when updating "Career University".

Check the forum guidelines for effective communication.
(Book a call) for personalized & private feedback

Found another resource on negotiating for a raise. And, I think that this approach is great to compare (or add) to Ramit's:

The recommended scripts in the article were also quite interesting:

Sample answer about salary expectations:

You: “I’d prefer if this discussion takes place after an offer has been made. In any case, I trust the package will be appropriate for my level of experience and the industry. In the meantime, can you tell me more about the role?”

Sample answer for the “What’s your current salary?” interview question:

You: “My employer considers employee compensation to be confidential. As I’m sure you understand, access to this information is limited to inside management. So, unfortunately, I’m unable to share it with you. However, if you share the salary range for this position, I can confirm that my salary is within that range or not.”

How to make the first offer

As Kolenda recommends in The Psychology of Negotiation, use a "bolstering range" as an anchor point when delivering your price range. And, you can say:

You: “I’m giving you a range, because, depending on the role and the responsibilities involved, this will determine where in this range this role fits. Having said that, money isn’t my only motivation, so I’m also keen to grow and be flexible on my salary, depending on the outcome of my application.”

There's more in the article. Maybe some of its concepts and strategies would be a good addition to Sethi's work.

Lucio Buffalmano has reacted to this post.
Lucio Buffalmano
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