Career Coach Tip #79

Ask For It


This Career Coach tip encourages you to ask for what you want.

As a coach, I hear many people lament how they “wish” they would get a raise. Or they “hope” their boss would recognize their hard work. How about the even more victim-like statement, “if only” they would include me in meetings, at lunch, in the presentation…


You know what you want. So ask for it. Of course, don’t ask in a brazen, belligerent or demanding manner such as: “Why don’t you ever notice how often I do things for you?” or “What does it take for you to include me at the office (fill in the blank)?” That’s a turn off.

The next time you meet with your supervisor, avoid focusing on the “to-do list” and tasks that you’ve completed. Instead, share your aspirations for growth. Then, ask to be included in the next big meeting to raise your profile.

If you want recognition, ask for it. Express your feelings that you’d appreciate feedback on your work so that you can move forward with confidence.

If you are on a job search, ask questions to help decide if the company is a good fit for you. Ask “What makes this an amazing company to work for?” or “”How directly involved is the boss in day-to-day activities?” or “What community service activities are employees involved in?” Observe the environment and then ask yourself, “Is this going to work for me?”

And of course, ask for a raise!  You must first be prepared to share what you’ve achieved and how you plan to accomplish your objectives going forward.  In one research study, students who negotiated and asked for a higher pay rate than initially offered were able to increase their starting salaries by 7.4%. Yes, just because they asked! And guess what, most of those who asked were men. That is almost exactly the difference between starting salaries of men vs. women.

What is it you want? Go ask for it. And be sure to ask with certainty.

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