Compensation Follows Contribution Not The Other Way Around

As an employer I learned to recognize the death knell of a person's career, namely their frequently bringing up increased compensation for discussion without first building the case for the value the person has added to the firm. 

When the subject of compensation comes first, the conversation takes on the tone of, "I will keep doing what I have been doing, but you need to raise my pay because I need the money, or because I think you have taken advantage of me in the past". Some individuals try to make the point that if their pay were increased they would be motivated to work harder, or be more creative. Studies have shown that raises in compensation (even massive ones) make little difference in the person's performance.

When contribution is mentioned first, it carries this type of message, "The firm is gaining a lot of benefits from extra things I have been doing, and my employer can clearly see this is worth extra pay". A big difference from the other message.

I assume a significant contribution is being made. If you are just "turning the wheel one more time", then you are required to settle for what they offer you. I also assume you are documenting the significant contributions you are making.

The process applies to a lot more than earning money. Advancement, grades in school, recognition are a few other rewards that work under the same principles.

©  2002 John D. Toellner, All Rights Reserved