All For The Love Of Money

Want to make more money at your job?  According to an article from New York Magazine, you might need to fight your instincts.

When an employee asks for a raise, no matter how deserved it might seem, that employee generally has a certain amount of fear.  The fear is that your boss is going to tell you you don’t deserve a raise.  In fact, they’ve been thinking of letting you go, but they might let you stay if you’re willing to take a pay cut.

If you’re like me, your instinct is never to bring up the subject of money, because they might decide they don’t want to give it to you anymore.  But according to a study, if you really want a good raise or even a good starting salary, start the negotiations by being ridiculous.

Ask for an insane amount of money based on the job you’re doing or seeking.  If the job pays about fifty thousand dollars, tell them you’d like 300 thousand.  You’ll probably get a good laugh, and you won’t get 300 thousand dollars.  However, you may still benefit.  Asking for a huge amount of money is a technique called “anchoring”.

In anchoring, you simply ask for a higher number than you actually expect to get.  The study, which was completed in 2011, says that the mention of any really high number will actually make your boss less likely to low-ball you.

In the 2011 study, dozens of people interviewed for the same job.  The job usually paid about 30 thousand dollars.  People who didn’t specify how much money they wanted were offered on average about 30 thousand.  Those who said they wanted 100 thousand or more generally settled for between 35 and 36 thousand.

Even if it feels like the wrong time to be silly and possibly borderline insulting, ask for the dough.  For some reason, it may get you 10 to 15 percent more.  Or it could get you thrown out of the office.  I can’t promise it’ll work.  But it’s worth a try.

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