I see peers at other institutions, even my own, making more money than me. When I look to private sector, they all seem to make more money. What do you suggest if I want to increase my salary?
We all want more money. And grass is greener on the other side of the fence. No one can blame you for wanting your share of the pie. But don’t expect it as an entitlement and don’t think it will satisfy your need.
More money is often illusory. The more we make, the more we tend to spend. What do many do when they get an increase? They buy a new car, a bigger house, more stuff. When that happens, the increase in take-home pay is often negated. So if you want more money, make sure you know why?
All of that said, I’ll toss it back to you. What are you going to do?
A few things I would suggest:
- Make a plan for your career path. Look at a 5-10 year horizon. Your career should be treated like an investment, with a long-term view. Think of where you are, where you want to be. Do you have the education, the training and requisite skills? If not, make acquiring them part of your plan. (See Stuck, To What Degree) Then start taking steps to get there. If your first response is that you can’t afford to pay for more school, you’re thinking short-term. If you invest, say $25,000, for a graduate degree, that investment may pay off handsomely if you’re looking at a horizon more than ten years.
- If you remain in your current organization, in your current role, chances are that you might advance, but big leaps in salary will not be easy. If that’s what you want, it often requires migrating to a new role in a new organization. If you can land a job offer elsewhere, you usually have more room to negotiate.
- Learn and use project management skills. We have more initiatives and change management processes than we can handle. We ALWAYS need players with these skills (hard and soft skills). Those who demonstrate abilities in this area will often get pegged for advanced roles within the organization.
- Read the book Your Money or Your Life. I did. It fundamentally changed how I look at money and wealth. It may help you rethink 1) why you are chasing more money and 2) put a premium on the value of your time.
Next week… ‘Why do I have to leave my organization to advance?’