Get A Raise in Three Months?

I was reading Get A Raise in Three Months by Jason Ferreira and had a few comments…

Jason first recommends arriving early and staying late and not just 5 minutes, but instead, 30 minutes You should also email your supervisor about something so they know what time you were there. I disagree with this statement for the following reasons:

  • Most supervisors know this trick of emailing to show your “commitment”.
  • If you are hourly, a company must pay you for all time that benefits them, including time worked without their permission. Add one hour a day for the year, and you’ve got 260 hours. Right now when budgets are tight, it will definitely get noticed but perhaps not in a good way.
  • If you are on a salary and increasing your take home pay isn’t the motivation, doing this on a daily basis could appear that you aren’t efficient with your time during the day.

The more important rule of thumb should be, be ready to start work at your scheduled time and stay as long as you’re needed to get the job done. Most days that will be at your end time, however, be available to stay late to meet a deadline. Your boss will notice that more.

Secondly, Jason states you must prove your worth. I totally agree. Some people work harder to get the job than they do working in the job. Again with tight budgets and a poor economy, many companies are looking for a ways to reduce costs. With the rule of thumb that 20% of the people do 80% of the work, if you are an 80%-er doing 20% of the work then your job could be one on the chopping block. Also many supervisors tend to base reviews on things that have recently happened so reminding them of some of the good things done in the past will certainly increase the chances of a better review.

Next, Jason recommends volunteering. I’d rather seeing someone do this than put in an hour a day arriving early and staying late unasked. Have you ever been in a meeting and someone said, “so who would like to…”, where everyone looks at each other thinking “not me?” Being the first to say “I will” will make you look like a life saver. Now, if you do something valuable without being asked, you’ll probably make your boss even happier.

Lastly, Jason says to ask for the raise. Agreed, but not after three months. When you were hired, your salary was determined based on the job responsibilities. If you are going above and beyond those responsibilities or they have changed from when you were first hired, then I believe you should ask for a raise. However, if you are doing your job as expected, your salary was based on those expectations. Remember not to talk about your salary and any raise discussions with your co-workers. Employers consider this to be confidential information, and know when someone has been talking because others start asking for raises as well.

Many companies have moved from time-oriented raises to merit based. That is why is so important to prove your worth, be willing to stay late when necessary, and volunteer. You will be considered valuable to the company because, odds are, you’ll be a 20%-er doing 80% of the work.