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10 tips to ask for a salary increase in Nigeria

Asking for a pay raise: the information you need, the arguments to bet on, the right clothing and the tone to use to meet your boss and ask for more money.

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You have been working in the same company for a few years, you feel comfortable but you always have that fixed thought: you would like to earn more and make a career, but you don’t know how to proceed. Or you have just changed your job and this change has not been accompanied by any salary adjustments.

Whatever your situation, your question is always the same: how to ask for a pay raise? How to understand when the right occasion is, what needs to be said, what results to present and, last but not least, how should you dress? We try to answer all these… All you need to do is… Read on!!


Here, we identify 10 steps to follow before facing the boss or the human resources manager and to be prepared for the negotiation.


How to ask for a pay raise?


Ok, you need a raise because you haven’t gotten it in a long time or you have never had your salary adjusted, or because you have recently had a lot of expenses and feel the need to earn immediately. But your thoughts do not necessarily coincide with that of the company.


If you’re wondering how often your salary increases or how long it takes to go from a hiring or contract start, you should instead rely on the company’s policy, especially if you want your proposal to succeed.

In general, salaries are reviewed once a year. It can happen – in exceptional situations and/or when you are very performing – that they are re-discussed several times in twelve months. In any case, we recommend that you understand what the company practice is (or ask for it during the hiring phase) and act accordingly. Some companies are very strict on this aspect, others less so and have no fixed deadlines for requests of this kind ”.

It goes without saying that if your company decides to re-evaluate salaries in June and December, it is useless to start asking for an appointment with HR in February, rather you should ask for it in late April or mid-May and start preparing.


What if your company doesn’t have predefined periods?


If this is the case, ask your colleagues, your manager, or HR manager what the practice is so that you know when to start moving.


Gather the information you need


Just like when you apply for a company before doing a job interview, you learn about what it does, you study the site, you see what the business is, who the managers are, and how much else, the same you have to do what you intend to ask. a salary increase. For example, if your company is about to lay off or has laid off redundancy payments although you have worked well, it is not the most suitable time …

Coming with precise information helps to calibrate the interview and requests.  It is pointless to ask for a pay raise if the company is firing due to budget problems, or to ask for it in June if the reviews are due in January. It can be a good tactic, especially if the economic aspect is becoming a strong element of demotivation, to start addressing the issue with your boss.


Ask for a pay raise with specific reasons


It is not enough to think “I deserve it because I work 12 hours a day” or “I have been working here for many years, I have given my best” or “without me, they would be lost: I saved them with client X or with the client Y ”, but we need to bring concrete results.

Not only to be prepared for what has been done, but also about what our contribution will be in the future. We must not only rely on the results obtained in the previous months but focus the discussion on the added value that our work can bring to the company.

So if you want to ask for a salary increase and get it, cultivate the past, use the present, but also focus on the future. Companies invest in people and expect people – at least as long as they stay in them – to invest in companies. Be proactive and forward-looking.


The mistake that many make is that the salary increase is a goal, it is, but it is also a starting point to continue in your career.


Avoid comparisons with others

We always make ourselves strong in what has happened to others, but this policy is counterproductive:

Comparisons with other colleagues are never useful because they generate closure on the part of the interlocutor, better to rely on ourselves and our work.


Each person has their own story, don’t forget that


Try to understand if there are any stated and shared goals
You should know this when they hire you or it should have been communicated to you shortly after, but if not, try to figure out if there are any goals you need to aim for. Because?

In some companies, promotions or raises are granted upon the achievement of stated and shared goals. In these cases, the parameters are objective and non-negotiable.

And this can help you: if you’ve seen that your goals have been met, it will be even easier to negotiate a salary without being told no.

A tip: if you can, always try to have your duties set down in writing, what is expected of you and what goals you need to achieve, and in what timeframe.

Often companies – especially if small – are reluctant to do so, let them understand that having everything clear allows you, determined as you are, to get to the result and to study the most suitable path to achieve it.


How much to ask for a pay raise

How much to ask for a pay raise? You may be wondering, but if you have a meeting in a few months or days, even in this case, avoid arriving unprepared or thinking that it will be your boss or HR manager who’d understand your value and give you what you deserve. . Nothing more wrong.

Try to arrive with clear ideas to understand if the proposed increase is in line with your expectations. So take the time to calculate:


  • the minimum expected: that is, the threshold below which you cannot go because it is not in line with normal living expenses and to maintain your current standard. If the raise they give you do not respect them, the next step could be a career change or try to see if you can bargain to work less to reach certain goals or to negotiate certain aspects of your job: enter an hour later. in the office, having telework days, more flexibility, or something else;


  • Your market value: something you can find out by comparing the salary with those who do the same job or have similar roles but in other business contexts or by basing on job advertisements in which, for the same duties and experience, the gross annual salary. Also, take into account how many people there are for that role and any lack of resources. If you have specific skills that only a few have in Nigeria, your negotiation skills are higher, otherwise, you have to take into account the competition;


  • The desired salary: it is also important to know what your maximum may be. Not to fly too high, but not to sell out too much. And also consider that there are companies that, perhaps to keep you, could make you a very close offer.

If you understand all this, you can understand for yourself how much to ask for as a salary increase.


Avoid asking for a pay raise by email

In general, it’s recommended that you address this issue in person (absolutely no telephone and/or email) and, as we said, arrive at the meeting prepared and with full awareness of the results obtained in the previous months.

Why no mail and no phone? Because the email, if on the one hand, it helps you to avoid confrontation, to use the right words without getting confused by emotion, on the other hand, it does not help the negotiation which requires a question and answer at the same time and to study the language too. non-verbal, unspoken, pauses, etc … And then who likes to receive an e-mail saying “I ask to pass from the third to the second level?”

Rather, use email or telephone to make an appointment saying that maybe you would like to meet the person in question to “review some aspects of your collaboration” or more simply to “talk about your work and your next goals” or your “path career.”

Don’t get into the topic right away, but maybe take the opportunity initially to remember how happy you are to work in the company, how long you have been working there and how useful it has been to work in that position.


Choose the right clothing

The impression also has its importance:

Better to focus on appropriate clothing for a meeting with your boss. We strongly advise against excesses: obviously, you don’t need a formal dress, but it’s not a good idea to show up in a t-shirt and flip-flops.

So, choose something that does not attract too much attention and that is sober, elegant but without exaggerating. Better than those in front of you immediately make a good impression of how you are that day and then move on to something else. You are there to talk about your raise.


Avoid talking to colleagues about it and ask the manager for help

If you have to ask for a pay raise, try not to involve your colleagues too much. The possibility of you getting it when they recently had a rejection or when they expected to be promoted for having achieved a certain goal, could generate quite a few envies.

Speak instead – if you have one – with your direct manager: he will be able to help you to act as an intermediary, to understand what you think about you in the company and even if the moment is right as well as help you identify certain aspects of your work on to aim for.


Manage your emotions

In addition to the awareness of what you can do and have done so far, ensure;

“to be convincing, finally, it is essential to know how to manage one’s emotions and be confident (this is why it is important to be clear about the results we have obtained), without becoming arrogant.

Therefore “train” to have a calm tone, to speak without haste, and to be rather calm. Train is a verb that we do not use randomly: if it makes you feel better, prepare a plot of the speech, initially, it will help you break the ice as well as manage the various objections to your request for a salary increase.


Refusal to raise a salary: how to behave?

Ok, think about how to get it, but what to do in case of refusal?

If the answer is no, it may be useful to arrange – together with your boss – another meeting in the following months to tackle this issue again. In any case, it is important to have a precise idea of ​​one’s professional career and performance, so that one can always discuss based on objective data and not sensations.

Have you asked for a pay raise recently? Tell us how it went in the comments.

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