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How to Get Paid More?

When it comes to how much you’re getting paid, more is always better than less. In a tough job market, there’s not much you can do to get a higher pay rate, especially when it comes to entry level jobs. If you want to get paid more though (who doesn’t?!), there are a few things that you can do to help yourself. They won’t always work, but they might give you a bigger edge over the long run.

Starting Pay

Your starting pay is crucial. Most people expect to make very little when they first start out at a job, but this sets the tone for the rest of your career. Most companies give out raises on a yearly basis to keep up with the cost of living, but if you start out at a higher rate, then every single raise that you get throughout your career will put you at an even higher rate. Think about it: if you start out at $10 per hour, then get a 3% raise, next year you are making $10.30 per hour. If you start out at $10.25 per hour and get a 3% raise, next year you are making $10.56 per hour. Okay, that’s not a huge difference, but did you notice the very subtle difference? The first is a 30 cent raise. The second is a 31 cent raise. That single penny is a big deal because next year, it will be even more, adding to your percentage. So, although in the first scenario it’s only a quarter more, a year from now it’s 26 cents more. Every year, the gap will get bigger and bigger. When you are given a job offer, it is important to push a little bit to see how much you can get in starting pay. Even a few cents more starting out will give you a huge advantage over the course of your career. You don’t want to be a pain to a prospective employer, of course, but you also want to be able to negotiate a higher pay if possible. And to do that, you need to show that you are worth it.

Showing Your Worth

If you have experience in the industry that you are going into, you want to use this as leverage. But you can’t do this just by saying “I worked 15 years at XYZ Company.” You need to show what you did there, and the results that this created. A history of proven success is worth far more than someone who just went to work and received a paycheck. So, be prepared to show what you are worth to a company. “As shift leader at McDonalds, drive through window upsells increased by 15%, creating an extra $500 in profits on average for my store on a weekly basis.” This is the kind of information that you can use to help show your worth at another job. You’re not just saying that you did something, you are showing what benefit it had for the company.

Once You’re Employed

Once you’ve been hired, your negotiating power doesn’t go away. Sit down with your boss and ask him or her what their expectations of you are and how they are determined. If you are a cashier at Home Depot, one of your expectations might be to have customers sign up for the loyalty program as this helps with customer retention. If you are given a goal of 20% new sign up conversions, then do your best to crush this number. After a few months, you can go back to your boss and indicate that you have beaten your goals. This will help you to show your worth and growth within the company, and prove that you are worth more than the average employee.


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