Do’s and Don’ts of Requesting a Raise in Salary or Wages

Printer-Friendly Version

by Randall S. Hansen, Ph.D.

Here are the keys to successfully requesting an increase in salary or wages. Following these simple rules and guidelines should help you achieve success in getting the raise you deserve.

  • Do have a plan and a strategy for getting the raise you deserve.
  • Don’t make ultimatums, beg, whine, or get angry. Do be professional.
  • Do have an idea of your value — both inside the company and on the job market. And do use these salary negotiation resources.
  • Don’t be unrealistic in seeking too much of a raise. Do have an idea of the parameters you should expect.
  • Do be flexible in considering perks other than a monetary raise if money is tight within the department or organization.
  • Don’t focus on the raise you need. Instead, do focus on the raise you deserve.
  • Do demonstrate your value, accomplishments, and contributions to your department and your organization. Don’t assume your work speaks for itself. Consider using something like this accomplishments worksheet.
  • Don’t be intimidated by the process. Do ask for a raise if you deserve one.
  • Do have a thorough understanding of the negotiation process and plan a strategy accordingly.
  • Don’t blindside your boss in the hallway for a raise; do schedule an appointment to discuss a raise.
  • Do be persistent in asking for a raise, but don’t ask too often — and do know the proper policies and procedures of the organization.
  • Don’t be overtly disappointed if you do not get the raise you desire, but do ask for suggestions on how you can get the raise you want at your next raise meeting.
  • Do focus on your future with the organization.
  • Do consider enlisting the help of a mentor within the organization.
  • Do read our article, Getting the Raise You Deserve.
  • Do read our article, Clever Ways to Get a Raise: Perks you Might Not Have Thought About.

Questions about some of the terminology used in this article? Get more information (definitions and links) on key college, career, and job-search terms by going to our Job-Seeker’s Glossary of Job-Hunting Terms. Founder Dr. Randall Hansen Dr. Randall S. Hansen is founder of Quintessential Careers, one of the oldest and most comprehensive career development sites on the Web, as well CEO of He is also founder of and He is publisher of Quintessential Careers Press, including the Quintessential Careers electronic newsletter, QuintZine. Dr. Hansen is also a published author, with several books, chapters in books, and hundreds of articles. He’s often quoted in the media and conducts empowering workshops around the country. Finally, Dr. Hansen is also an educator, having taught at the college level for more than 15 years. Visit his personal Website or reach him by email at randall(at) Check out Dr. Hansen on GooglePlus.

Have you seen all our salary negotiation resources?

Read all our job-hunting do’s and don’ts articles for job-seekers.

Maximize your career and job-search knowledge and skills! Take advantage of The Quintessential Careers Content Index, which enables site visitors to locate articles, tutorials, quizzes, and worksheets in 35 career, college, job-search topic areas.