The end of the year is near, and in preparation for 2017 you're probably starting to get your budget together... or at least thinking about it.
One thing that would really help you is a raise at work, and you feel like you deserve one.
You work as hard or harder than the person in the cubicle next to you, you're on time every day and you work overtime and take on extra tasks when needed.
I mean, you're a true "employee of the month," really.
But before you storm into your boss's office asking for a raise you need to prepare yourself.
You need to make sure you execute this request for more money so perfect and professionally your boss wouldn't be able to say no even if they wanted to.
Here are 12 things you need to do in order to prepare yourself for asking for a raise:
1. Be positive in your productivity.
A boss is not likely to give you a raise unless you're productive at work, and you need to know what that looks like and how to illustrate it.
When prioritizing tasks make sure you're not only getting your work done, but you're doing it in the right and most time-efficient order.
In order to be the most efficient, you should avoid multitasking.
While it can be helpful (and sometimes needed), when you're multitasking you're not putting 100 percent effort into every task you're working on.
And remember to take your lunch break and use your vacation days.
Chances are your boss won't care too much if you open your pitch for a raise by saying you work through breaks and vacation time. That's your choice and overworking yourself shows you don't care about your overall well-being.
2. Illustrate your accuracy and attention to detail.
Accuracy and attention to detail go a long way when asking for a raise.
Have a few examples of specific instances or tasks you perform to illustrate your application of these skills. Your boss may want to discuss how you can improve in these areas before bumping your pay.
3. Be willing to do more.
More money may come with more responsibility.
Prepare yourself for a counter offer from your boss which may involve you stepping up and taking on a greater role in certain areas.
Asking for a raise is the start of a negotiation, and your request is just the opening move.
4. Add to your skill set.
If you want a bigger salary, you'll need to show you have additional skills your employer can take advantage of.
You can do this by taking continuing education courses specific to the field you're working in or skills you use. You can also do this by taking online college classes.
If you want to move up the ladder at work should consider pursuing a more advanced degree. With a little discussion you might be able to get your employer to pay for some or all of your tuition.
By acquiring new skills you bring new value to your employer, making it easier to persuade them you deserve a raise.
5. Illustrate your ability to work independently.
Employees who can work independently require less attention and time from their managers.
This reduces stress in the workplace for both employees and employers.
Prepare for the meeting where you'll request your raise by listing specific examples of when and how you worked independently, and assure them you can continue to do so.
6. Illustrate your value.
However, it's still important to be able to work as part of a team, and to even be able to lead a collaborative project with your peers.
After all, sometimes teamwork does make the dream work.
Prepare for your interview by compiling examples of when you've worked as a team, and list the specific skills and values you bring to group projects.
7. Discuss your strong relationships.
Relationships with clients, other businesses and co-workers are invaluable.
No one else has the same type of relationships you have with those who you're connected to.
Share what some of these relationships are with your boss, and explain why they're unique and how they benefit the company as a whole.
8. Show you're creative and innovative.
Before giving you a raise, your boss wants to see the value you bring to the organization.
A very important value to have is a new perspective, a sense of creativity and a spirit of innovation.
When asking for a raise, list times you may have come up with and implemented creative solutions to problems at work.
9. Leverage your maturity.
Asking for a raise shows a certain maturity: you're confident in your abilities and your skills, you know they have a value and you want to get paid what they're worth.
At the same time, you should emphasize your maturity within the company.
If you've been with them for a while, you know the ins and outs, the policies and procedures and the processes better than a new employee.
Don't forget to emphasize your career maturity.
If you've been working the same position for a number of years, chances are you're mature in that industry in ways others aren't.
This is another place where you can emphasize your connections along with your unique knowledge.
10. Always graciously accept feedback.
Regardless of your position in the company, and how long you've been there, you might not be seeing the whole picture.
If the company has just gone through a round of layoffs and is looking to cut expenses, your timing may be off. So be prepared to wait until the overall financial picture looks better, and don't threaten to leave.
In addition, your boss might say yes but have feedback about your performance and things they'd like you to work on.
Or they might ask you to work on those things before giving you a raise.
No matter the response, accept it graciously.
Responding in a respectful manner shows you care about the job, and your maturity and dedication to the company.