3 Things That Can Keep You From Getting The Raise You Deserve + How To Fix Them

Founder of Women For One By Kelly McNelis
Founder of Women For One
Kelly McNelis is the founder of Women For One, a destination for women ready and willing to make life happen. Her work has been featured in O! Magazine, Entrepreneur Magazine, The Huffington Post, and more.


When I think of the global community of ambitious, driven, creative women who are making life happen on their own terms, it makes me proud. It also strengthens my belief in women who are pursuing their life’s passions and making a difference in the world.

But let’s face it: Negotiating salaries is challenging for many women for a number of reasons, one of them being that we aren’t taught to talk about money. It’s time to start acknowledging what we are bringing to the table and start asking for what we are worth. Here are three tips to get started on becoming your own best advocate and getting that raise you deserve:

1. Start celebrating your accomplishments.

Women aren’t usually encouraged to celebrate ourselves. Historically, we've been taught to be modest and value collective success over individual achievement. But this doesn’t do us any favors.

Here are some actions you can take right now to get going:

  • Make a list of your achievements (and pull it out whenever you need a reminder of all you’ve done).
  • Take credit for the awesome ideas you contribute to your team.
  • Give your boss the chance to tangibly see how much you’ve accomplished.
  • And if you are asking for a raise or promotion, you need to be willing to share your accomplishments in a clear, logical, persuasive way.
  • Connect your successes to the bigger picture and the company’s overall goals.
  • Get clear and communicate how you have helped uplift your company’s mission and vision as well as the people around you.
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2. Get comfortable talking about money.

Talking about money is taboo in our society. But in order to find our true power, we need to be bolder about advocating for our financial well-being and security. I recommend talking about money and raises with close friends and family as well as asking them how they deal with these issues. Also, do your homework and research salaries in your industry. These websites (salary and pay scale) are good resources. If it feels appropriate, ask colleagues how much they make. Have a specific number in mind, and be unapologetic about naming it when you ask for your raise.

Having this hard conversation truly starts with you. Get clear about what you want. When you clearly state your intentions to yourself, you’ll be better positioned to talk about money and negotiate with your boss without wavering.

3. Step into your confidence.

Asking for a raise can be incredibly intimidating, but part of being a great negotiator is going into this conversation with the perspective that what you are asking for is a win-win for everyone.

When you are confident—which I view as being passionate, joyful, and purpose-driven—people notice and respond. Doors that may have been previously closed begin to open. So take a cue from what inspires you. Wouldn’t it be amazing for you to be able to offer even more of your talents to your organization? And how great would it be if you were rewarded for the work you were already doing? Assume that your boss wants to support you—and be willing to give him or her ideas on how to do so.

Instead of going into defensive mode or allowing your mind to spin, take some time to simply breathe and center yourself in your body before the conversation. Remember: Think win-win, and relax while you’re at it!

Take these simple tips and boldly ask for that raise you deserve.

Want more insights on how to level up your life? Check out your June horoscope, then find out if you're meeting your emotional needs (and how you can do it better).

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