(Part 9) 3 Things You Absolutely Must Do To Get a Raise

The Power of Silence
There is a certain power in saying just the right words and then… silence. How many times do we - out of nervousness or anxiety - blabber on and about something, diluting whatever impact the first few words may have had?

1) It's kind of like writing. Short sentences. Like these.
2) Versus writing rather than long, verbose, structured sentences with too many details that go on and on and sometimes leave you wondering where on earth it's all going since there's no point anywhere in sight and now you just can't wait to get to the end of the sentence and see that beautiful little dot known as the period.

Which of the above two sentences is easier to read and has more impact? Number 1; right? It's because short, punchy sentences work better. Less is more, as they say.

The same principle apply to verbal communication. After you've asked for the raise, made your points about the value you bring to the firm, stop. That's it. Just stop.

Bite your tongue if you continue talking after a certain point. Don't do it! You might feel nervous and feel the need to fill the silence with more words. Don't do it! Resist this temptation. It only weakens your original point.

Rehearse Your Speech Only If You Want To Get A Raise.
Here is something you must do: write it down and rehearse it. Write down all your key points and practice communicating them to a friend. Only do this if you want to get a raise. Sometimes a friend will help you see where you are talking too much and watering down your points. Sometimes a friend can help you see your blind spots or where your argument needs to be bolstered.

Any time you go in for a raise - know what value you bring, be able to effectively communicate that value, and then use the power of silence (aka confidence). And then wait for a response back from your boss before saying anything further. If he/she asks you questions - and they will - don't be in such a hurry to blurt out the answer. Take your time. Being in control of your speech is the key to communicating effectively.

…to be continued…
Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Todd Olivas

Todd Olivas is a court reporter and entrepreneur.
He founded TO&A in 2003.

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