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The Best Response When An Employee Asks For A Raise

You should be concerned about what you should say and do when an employee requests a raise. Because how you manage a raise request will have an immediate influence on your employee’s motivation, performance, and, eventually, the team’s success.

Let’s make sure the end result is positive, even if you have to decline the request.

This RisePath blog will discuss the procedure which will be broken down into three stages:

  • Before your employee asks for a raise, here’s what you should know.
  • When an employee requests for a raise, how should you respond?
  • After you’ve had the raise request chat, what should you do?
When An Employee Asks For A Raise

Before your employee asks for a raise, here’s what you should know.

Let’s start with the fundamentals.

1. While what a certain employee requires is vital, it should not be part of the debate.

Some employees have families of their own. Some people have a lot of bills. Some people have significant debts to repay.

While it may appear harsh, an employee’s remuneration should always be based on their contribution to your company, regardless of how urgent their needs are. They don’t have any requirements.

Is it appropriate to pay one person more merely because they have a large family when another employee works equally well, if not better?

Obviously not.

Those issues should not be discussed, no matter how important or valid your employee’s needs are. As a result, be ready to instantly shift the attention to your employee’s accomplishments. (Higher income, like respect, should always be earned.)

Make sure you’re ready to talk about numbers, not simply your feelings. 

Prior to your meeting,

  • Check your payroll system to discover what their current income or wage is and how it compares to others in similar roles who have performed similarly.
  • Examine prior performance evaluations and action plans.
  • If it relevant to their position, look into other data-collection tools you use, such as CRM software or a point-of-sale system, to check sales figures and progress against targets.

Higher pay should come as a result of providing more value, so make sure you know how useful your person is.

2. While how an individual performs in comparison to their colleagues is significant, it should not be discussed.

Perhaps Jim outperforms Jessica. Perhaps Melody outperforms Mark. Even so, participating in that debate opens a bag of worms that will never be closed.

(Besides, great supervisors never discuss the performance of another employee.)

The only thing that matters is whether or not your employee requests a raise. What they’ve done (and how they did it), what they’ve accomplished, and how much value they bring to the table.

Prepare to return the spotlight to your staff and their achievements.

3. While the financial situation of your company is important, it should only be a small part of the conversation.

If cash flow is extremely tight, your employees should already be aware.

So don’t just say anything along the lines of, “You know I can’t afford to pay you more,” and walk away.

The majority of employees want a raise because they really believe they add more value to your company than their compensation indicates. You must address this, or your employee will feel both invalidated and demotivated as a result.

If you’re short on cash, don’t be afraid to say so. However, be prepared to immediately shift the conversation to your employee’s performance and, if your answer is “no,” what they can do to earn that raise in the future.

When an employee requests for a raise, how should you respond?

“I want to talk to you about getting a raise,” an employee enters your office, closes the door, and says.

Put yourself in your employee’s shoes, even if the concept makes you uncomfortable. It’s difficult to request a raise. 

They’re jittery. They make you feel uneasy. They are jeopardising their professional relationship with you.

Deflecting or demurring will squander the opportunity. Accept the opportunity to have a meaningful chat with a valued employee for what it is.

Say, with a nod of your head,

“Great. Let’s have a discussion about it. “Explain why you believe you are deserving of a raise.”

After that, pay attention.

Don’t argue. Allowing your employees to express themselves validates their feelings. If you do ask a question, make sure it’s a clarifying one. In a nutshell, endeavour to comprehend. Then you must answer.

If you’re a good employer, your employee is probably already well compensated. But don’t just respond “Yes” if you think your employee deserves a raise.

Please explain why. Make certain they don’t believe you simply “gave” them a raise. (Or acquiesced in some way.) Ascertain that they are aware that they have earned it. In short, if your employee’s achievements convince you that they are underpaid, make the necessary adjustments.

If this isn’t the case, you’ll have to decline. Don’t stop there, though. Provide hope—and, more crucially, a path—by outlining exactly what your employee needs to accomplish to receive a raise.

Here are some suggestions for them:

1. Begin working on a side project.

It is expected of you to do well on a project. People that excel at a side endeavour stand out. The objective is for your employee to take a risk while ensuring that the danger is not shared by your organisation or customers.

2. Raise fewer issues and solve a greater number of problems.

Many people express themselves verbally. Fewer people put out the effort to support their viewpoints through study and work product. Instead of demonstrating their intelligence by pointing out a flaw, the best employees resolve the issue.

Encourage your coworker to follow suit.

3. Be the person in charge of achieving crucial outcomes.

One or two things, regardless of the industry, genuinely generate success.

Maybe it’s a matter of quality. Maybe it’s because of the service. Perhaps it’s because you’re a low-cost provider.

Other factors are significant, but one or two are absolutely critical for every organisation. The top employees devote the majority of their efforts to such areas since they know they will aid the company’s success.

Also, people that are critical to a company’s success are always more valuable.

4. Move on to the next task.

Most people put off working harder until they get a raise. Employees should work harder now to demonstrate their readiness for the next, more advanced, and higher-paying job.

Great employees say,

“I want to make more money… therefore I’ll do everything I can to show that I deserve it.”

The prize always comes after the hard work. Great employees understand that their attitude sets them distinct, even if it’s only because few others believe like them.

Finally, one more point. It’s fine if you suggest strategies for an employee to get a raise but they refuse. All you can do at the end of the day is lay out the path.

Your employee will choose whether or not to choose that route.

After you’ve had the raise request chat, what should you do?

The worst thing you can do as a supervisor after an employee requests a raise is to act as if the conversation never happened. You might be inclined to forget about it, especially if things didn’t go as planned, but your employee will not.

Make use of this fact.

  • Keep in touch.
  • Inquire about the status of a project.
  • Inquire about the status of a development plan.
  • Inquire about difficulties addressed, leadership responsibilities assumed informally, or especially favourable outcomes.

In short, follow up because it demonstrates that you care, that you value their initiative, and that you want to keep them motivated in the future. It indicates that you care about them getting that increase if you follow up.

But it’s also because following up allows you to have more meaningful conversations with your staff, which helps them reach their objectives.

Not unexpectedly, this will also assist your company in achieving its objectives.

Christine Lee

Christine is a former HR manager from Fortune 500 tech companies and has managed hiring, compensation and benefits, and payroll responsibilities for multiple companies.

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