This post is about happiness, even if money apparently cannot buy it. We still need to admit, making too little money, for sure is not fun. Being in debt or not managing to pay your bills will focus your head on your worries instead of your job, so yes, making more money might be essential to happiness, and for sure essential for happiness at work. We want to feel like we get what we deserve, and here is how you will get it.
I have also noticed that those asking for a raise often fail, either because of timing, or because they have not proved the value of their efforts.
- Make sure you perform.
As in showbiz, a great performance pays off. Make sure you are in the top three at whatever you do. If you do perform great let your managers know. If you celebrate your own sales or results, your boss will most likely check why you celebrate, and praise might come your way. Do not be afraid to stand out.
- Make the extra effort.
Do not be “on the clock” all the time. If it is your lunchtime and the store is crowded, stay five minutes extra, or drop the lunch occasionally. If you work in a call center and you got heavy traffic, stay at work for 10-15 minutes extra to get a few extra calls in your statistics. You will also show that you will not leave your teammates in times of battle. Imagine if you can get one or two extra sales each day, or improving your statistics with a few percentage each day – this will make you stand out in the end.
- Do volunteer work.
I once had a co-worker that stepped in to work on Sunday, just to make Monday easier for the team. Imagine that! Make coffee, clean the kitchen, and make sure the copy room is nice. Volunteer for projects that you know you can do well. If your company arrange something, and you can sign up, do so. It will show that you have a heart and that you are social. Both being beneficial when the salary is up for revision.
- Be on time always.
No matter how great you perform, if your show starts late, your audience might have a bad first impression, even if the show is great. People notice, if you arrive ten minutes late for work.
- Make yourself valuable.
Increase your value. Have a look around. In this room, who are irreplaceable? Then ask yourself why it is so? Can you inject some knowledge into yourself? Read books, learn something new that will benefit your job. Before I got my first promotion, I read about how to motivate people. With this new skill, I started to engage my team, and as soon as the team leader position opened up, I got the job. An old “tip” about promotion is that you should dress like the people you want to impress. My advice is different, get to know what they know. Learn, earn and do things better.
- Stay motivated all the time.
If you fall behind on motivation and your manager needs to spend extra time motivating you, you will be in trouble. You might kiss the extra money goodbye if you are hard to motivate or if you spread a negative atmosphere around you. If you are negative, try to hide it, or talk with your manager in a constructive manner. A free hint for you: Make your manager’s day easier.
- Have patience.
Wait to ask, until the right time. Most companies adjust their pay once a year.
Make sure not to ask right after a recent adjustment, as the budget most likely will not allow further increase. Nevertheless, a couple of months before are a great time to ask for a raise. Do you remember the first rule of moneymaking? Do not ask, but if you need to ask, make sure you fulfill what I write about here first. You do not want to hear your manager say; you do an average job, why should you not have an average salary?
- Bring your value to the table.
If you save the company a lot of money – great! If you bring extra money in – Great! If you get your co-workers to perform better – Wonderful! These are key objects to defining your salary. “I can save you a million dollars a year – I am so confident that I want my pay to be 15 % of the savings I create” This was just an example, please be careful with such statements. I wrote this to prove a point. Get to know your value.
- Be professional.
The way you act, both off and on work, reflects you and your employer. Be polite, smile and treat people with respect. Also if you drive a branded company car – do not be an a**hole in traffic – just a tip.
- Have fun. [and that’s an order!]
Make sure that the people around you have a good time at work. After all, it is just a job. Having fun at work creates more happy employees, and in turn, they are less absent and more productive. “Win, win, win – situation”