I know it can feel like a kick in the gut. You’ve built yourself up, done the groundwork, and gone in for the big question…can I have a payrise. And they’ve had the absolute cheek to turn you down. Most people’s reaction is to start looking for another job immediately. They get caught up in not feeling valued and appreciated and take the hurt and channel it into digging a tunnel out. 

That may be the right thing to do. But before you draft your letter of resignation, I want you to consider a few other things first. 

1. What can you learn from how you went about asking? 

Firstly, when asking for a payrise it’s important to establish is this a good time in the business. Then you need to do the groundwork…regularly show the impact you’re having. Talk about your results and how you’re improving the business. Check in with your manager and get feedback on how they see your performance. They need to see that you excel. Then when you go in with your business case for why you deserve a bump up, they’re already primed and it should be a no-brainer. If that’s not how you approached it then you can learn and improve. 

2. Ask what would they see you need to do differently to secure a payrise? 

If this is reasonable then get very clear on what they’re looking for specifically. Then build that into your priorities and actions every week. Ask for a review in 3-6 months. Feedback on your progress regularly. 

3. You really need to work out what’s important to you.

What’s really important to you in your job? And in your career?  What are all the things you need and want from your role?  Without being clear on this you’re going to make bad decisions. A great job and career is about fulfilment and proper reward. Working out what true happiness looks like in your job is a great place to start. Then consider what are my goals for the next year/ 3-5 years? A career is a lifetime and you spend the vast majority of your life working. Be happy and be paid well. 

4. How much do you really enjoy your current role and company?

If you enjoy what you’re doing then take a moment. Is it a no for now or is this an indicator of the value the business places on you?  Be wary of running off to another role that pays more but where you won’t be happy. I regularly see women coming to me because they’ve made a knee-jerk decision and ended up in a worse spot. Do your due diligence on another company. Do they have a great culture? Do they develop their people? Will you get what you really value in a role and company?

5. What other options might be available within the company? 

Could you get the development you need to take a bigger step up here?  Think about the work you really want to be doing. Could you get involved in a new project? Take a sideways move?  You’ve opened up a discussion about next steps so why not make the most of it. 

6. Value yourself!

Of course it’s important you know your true market value and if you’re underpaid then that’s not good. Look for another role, but take into account all of the above. Don’t jump for the money. Jump for the package. You deserve the best, so go and find it!

I’m all about women getting paid what they deserve, and I have a bee in my bonnet about staying too long, giving loyalty and hard work and receiving little in return…And I also hate hasty decisions!

Leaving a job when you’re desperate for another one often results in jumping from the frying pan into the fire. I want you to make the BEST DECISION for you and your career. Not to take the first ‘better looking’ offer that comes your way. 

If you want help to make the best career decisions for you, then we really need to talk. I help women get paid properly for a career they love. I help them feel confident to go after what they really deserve.

If that sounds like something you need, then my Career Audit is a great place to start.