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People often lament about their pay and their position. They “wish” for a raise, “hope” their boss recognizes their hard work…sometimes they feel like victims: “if only” I were included THOSE meetings, invited to lunch, seek my opinion on the presentation…Ask! Hope is not a strategy. Wishing won’t get you anywhere.

You know what you want, so ask for it! Of course, you shouldn’t be belligerent demanding — “Why don’t you ever notice how often I do things for you?” or “What does it take for you to include me at the office (fill in the blank)?” will turn-off your boss, your managers and your teammates.

If you want recognition, ask for it. The next time you meet with your supervisor, instead of going over your to-do list and the tasks you’ve completed, share your aspirations for growth. Request feedback on your work, so you can move forward with confidence. Then, ask to be included in the next big meeting. Raise your profile!

If you are in the middle of a job search or a career change, ask yourself if the company is a good fit for you. “What makes this an amazing company to work for?” ”How directly involved is the boss in day-to-day activities?” “What community service activities are employees involved in?” Observe the environment, then ask yourself, “Will this going to work for me?”

And of course ask for a raise! Be prepared to share what you’ve achieved and what you’re planning to accomplish. In one research study, students who negotiated and asked for a higher pay rate than initially offered were able to increase their starting salaries by 7.4 percent. Yes! Just because they asked! And guess what, most of those who asked were men. 7.4 percent is almost exactly the difference between the starting salaries of men vs. women. If you want to break the glass ceiling, start at the beginning.

We’re pretty sure new General Motors CFO Dhivya Suryadevara asked for the promotions and raises she earned on her way to becoming the first woman CFO at GM and, working with CEO Mary Barra, is now part of the first-ever female CEO-CFO team in the auto industry. Congratulations to Ms. Suryadevara — we wish you much continued success!

What is it you want? Go ask for it. And be sure to ask with certainty.

Written by

Executive Coach/Founder and CEO of Conductive/ Mentor/ Strategist/ Entrepreneur/ KiteSurfer/ Mom

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