There's Nothing Magic About Getting A Raise

by Aubrey Bach

Getting a Raise Isnt Magic

Congratulations! If you're reading this, you are at least thinking about asking for a raise, and if you came to PayScale to begin your research, you made a great first decision. We know that the topic of salary negotiation can be intimidating, but if you start off with data, you're starting off on the right foot. Millions of people visit every month to find out how they can make more money, so we've put together this Salary Negotiation Guide with a group of esteemed career and negotiation experts to make your goal a reality. So here, without further ado, is our absolute, number one piece of advice for a successful salary negotiation:

It's not magic.

Now stay with me here. You probably already guessed you aren't going to find instructions on how to leave cookies out for a magical, raise-granting elf that will repay your gift of carbs with a fatter paycheck anywhere on You're a sane, logical human being after all.

Then why, when I enter "get a raise" as a search on Google, does "get a raise spell" appear as the sixth auto-suggestion on the list? Google's autocomplete suggestions are based off the most common things people search for that start with what you've entered so far. Billions of people use Google every year. That means that a statistically significant number of people come to Google to find a magic spell that will help them get a raise.

I wish I was kidding.

But before you storm away from your computer, announce loudly to your entire office that you've lost faith in humanity and start plotting a move to a remote island where only people who pass a series of carefully constructed logic puzzles are granted permission to enter, (or, in my case, after you do all those things) consider the fact that what this really shows is how much fear people have around the topic of salary negotiation. The idea of asking your boss for more money is so frightening that it causes successful professionals to resort to magical thinking in such great numbers that it's been captured by Google auto-suggest.

PayScale's Salary Negotiation Guide is here to show you that there is another way.

It's okay to be nervous. It's okay to be scared. But we're here to help you overcome those fears and arm you with data and useful, actionable negotiation tips that will help you power through. You see, the problem with talking about salary is that it's something we're taught to not talk about openly. It's a black box. Once you take the PayScale Salary Survey to find out how your salary compares to people like you, and then read about how other people have successfully negotiated the salary they deserve, it's like you suddenly have a flashlight to shed light on this murky subject.

We hope that this Salary Negotiation Guide lights a fire under your you-know-what.

Aubrey Bach

About the Author
Aubrey Bach is the Marketing Manager at and writes for PayScale about salary, higher education and career strategy. She is a recovering Diet Coke addict who grew up on the mean streets of Orange County, CA, but since coming to Seattle in 2007 has embraced everything the city has to offer (except, of course, the weather).