Asking for more money is an important part of your paid employment, but a lot of people balk at having the conversation. We don't talk openly about money, and asking for more can be intimidating to say the least. It is an important step in your financial health, though.
One of the largest barriers facing people is the struggle to quantify what they do and why they deserve a higher rate of pay. In today's Money Tools to Use series, we discuss how the S.T.A.R. Technique can help you express what you do and why you're a valuable employee.
To start, consider three contributions you made to your place of employment since your last review and/or raise. How did you continue to grow your level of service after those contributions?
Next, consider how you will continue to improve your work and contributions to the company going forward. In doing this you'll want to be as specific and concrete as possible, which is where the S.T.A.R. Technique can help:
S.T.A.R. stands for Situation, Task, Action, and Result. It's a technique used in informational and behavioural interviews to assess a candidate's past performance in order to get a sense of how they may respond to similar situations in the future.
The S.T.A.R. technique is as a way for employees to concretely show the skills they've developed and display the value they bring to their job role.
Here's an example from a person who is employed as a bookseller:
S: Situation – Customers could not find sections easily while browsing on their own.
T: Task – Create an environment where customers could browse with ease.
A: Action – Spearheaded design and construction of new section signs.
R: Result – Customers are now able to find the sections they want and the store has an updated look that’s consistent with its brand.
S.T.A.R. allows the bookseller to show a number of important skills -- we'll list two for each point, though there are many more in the above example. First, they noticed a situation in which a customer needed help (customer service, observation) . Second, they discovered what needed to be done to fix the situation (understanding, listening). Third, they undertook an innovative solution that required additional skills (brand knowledge and awareness, carpentry). Finally, they effectively solved the situation while improving the store's general appearance and efficiency (design, community connection).
When you ask for raise, if you know what you do and why it's important, you're going to have a strong foundation from which to build your case.
We'll discuss other ways to approach asking for a raise, considerations to think about before doing so, and further techniques to employ in future Money Tools to Use posts.
Squirrel and Nest offers one-on-one and small group financial counseling services that aim to give individuals the knowledge and independence they need to get their financial lives in great shape.