How to ask for a raise?

I started in investment banking department of a local bank 7 months ago. This is my first ever job in IB. Actually in anything finance related for that matter. Before I was a government employee for seven years and never negotiated a salary or asked for a raise. When I was looking for a new job, I was quite desperate so accepted a crappy package. Worse than a fresh graduate salary in the West. So bad I won’t even mention the number. In the meanwhile I cleared LIII and made kind of a good impression. If I wait a few months I beleive I can find a job with a better package. But I also beleive my employer is the best available in this market. So I would like to stay but the salary is so demeaning I don’t feel comfortable. I don’t know how to ask for a raise. I tried some indirect ways, like asking abour career path, my performance etc. I get a nice tap on the shoulder and a few nice words, but I could not get into the subject matter and they never promised a better pay. What to do?

“Dude, I’m getting married and my chick wants a house that I know - but she doesn’t due to age and naievety - we both cannot afford [even with a half decent “capital injection” from mom and dad]”. “So, give me more money or I’m outta here”. Willy

The best time to ask for a raise is at your year end review. If they like you and/or need you, you’ll get a raise. It’s probably easier to ask for a raise at a small company than a big company.

I’m sure someone must have written about these techniques. Bullet-point lists and stuff like that, things to say and what not to say. Another thing: if you’ve read your Nassim Nicholas Taleb you know that it’s not always easy to determine what is a good package since you only see part of your peer group (you now see only those better off that surround you and none among your former peer group, the government employees). In a way you’ve made a good deal already - rescued from a desperate situation with good working prospects with one of the best available employers, and being able to pursue a career path somewhere else but in the government sector. Apart from my current boss I’ve seldom met anyone who would by himself suggest to give you a higher raise the one you’ve initially requested, so I guess you’ll have to figure out on your own how to ask for a raise and what is the best timing to do so. I don’t think Willy’s suggestion will work in your case…

Hey Hiya, I’m glad that you finally got into IB, but the pay situation really stinks. Are you with B.Msct? I would have thought that their pay bands are fairly decent. I think the best option is to meet with your boss in person, and discuss the situation, stating why you think you should be paid more. If he refuses, tough luck, but you don’t lose anything by trying. Also, given that you passed L3 (congrats for that too btw!), you have a better chance of getting a raise. Doing this, would atleast let them know that you are dissatisfied with the offer, and are potentially considering other options. All the best :slight_smile:

Please sir… may I have some more?

make sure you find out what the market will bear, before you have any coversations. do your homework and go into the meeting prepared with direct comps. Additionally, make sure your work is well regarded. There very well could be a long line of candidates, more than happy to take what you are currently being paid (and be prepared for that as justification).

i think asking for a raise after being there 7 months is insane. most firms lose money on new employees for the first 6-12 months, studies show. i would keep mum and focus on doing a good job before year end. just my thought. esp in this weak macro milieu, asking for a raise is a little too much. i think your exp is awesome and the CFA progress you made is very awesome, but you have to think how “THEY” will see your raise request. just be patient, and reasses during christmas break

Thank you Kevin, I am with B.Msct and Pay is good for others. Not for me. I was out of a job for 20 months when I went to them. They paid only as much as they need to pay to get me at that moment. And thank you all. Hope there will be a way out.

Hiya - I had a few questions re: the job prospects in Muscat. Would it be alright if I contacted you offline through email? thanks

If you know for sure that you are being paid less than market, they surely know you are being paid less than market. It probably is best to wait until your yearly review, so I would suggest finding out what the market rate is so you have something to support your claim that you’re under paid. For example if you’re making x and you think the market is x+30%

OK, my last post was tongue-in-cheek for the literature/theatre folks. Seriously, first you need to know what the market rate for your job is and use that as your goal. Second, well *before* your review, you should start talking to your supervisor about what it will take to bring your salary in line with the market. Don’t place it as “I want a raise, can I have one?” put it as, “I want to be paid more in line with the market. What do you need to see from me in order to make that happen around the time of my review.” Try to come up with some targets and deliverables, and make sure that both of you agree that this is realisticly achievable. All of this makes it sound more like an agreement among professionals instead of an employee begging for more money.

Kevin, we can write to each other. write to me to

If you are being paid less than a new hire but performing similar or higher level work then just ask for parity. Most employers realize that they should keep pay (especially with relatively unproven entry level personnel) equal across similar positions. Not doing so is terrible for morale, as evidenced by your post.