Underpaid (Live)


Do you deserve a higher salary? In this episode of HBR’s advice podcast, Dear HBR:, cohosts Alison Beard and Dan McGinn answer your questions in a live taping with an audience of compensation experts. With the help of Susan Hollingshead, the chief people officer at Vendini, they talk through how to get more money when you haven’t been in your role long, the company isn’t giving out merit increases, or you’re at the bottom of your job’s salary range.

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Listen to more episodes and find out how to subscribe on the Dear HBR: page. Email your questions about your workplace dilemmas to Dan and Alison at dearhbr@hbr.org.

From Alison and Dan’s reading list for this episode:

HBR: How to Ask for a Raise by Carolyn O’Hara — “Pitch your raise as not only recognition for past achievements, but also tacit acknowledgment that you are a dedicated team player committed to growing with the company. Lay out your contributions, then quickly pivot to what you hope to tackle next. Assure your boss that you understand his pressures and goals, and pitch your raise as a way to help him.”

HBR: New Research Shows How Employees Feel When Their Requests for Raises Are Denied by Lydia Frank — “According to our analysis, 33% of employees who were denied a raise were provided no rationale. Of those who did receive some rationale (whether budgetary constraints, performance, or some other reason), just over 25% actually believed it. And of those who didn’t believe the rationale or didn’t receive one, more than 70% said they planned to seek a new job in the next six months.”

HBR: How to Get a Raise When Budgets Are Tight by Peter Bregman — “Think like a shareholder of the company. Ask lots of questions about the strategy, what’s keeping the top leaders awake at night, how your department impacts revenue or profitability, and what’s important to your direct manager. Identify, with your manager, the top two or three things you can work on that will drive revenue or profitability. Once you’ve had that conversation, you’ll have your raise-worthy work focus.”

HBR: 15 Rules for Negotiating a Job Offer by Deepak Malhotra — “Sadly, to many people, ‘negotiating a job offer’ and ‘negotiating a salary’ are synonymous. But much of your satisfaction from the job will come from other factors you can negotiate—perhaps even more easily than salary. Don’t get fixated on money. Focus on the value of the entire deal: responsibilities, location, travel, flexibility in work hours, opportunities for growth and promotion, perks, support for continued education, and so forth. Think not just about how you’re willing to be rewarded but also when.”

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