We work hard for our money and sadly, most restaurant owners are more than willing to pay the bare minimum while expecting top performance. Rarely will they ever recognize awesome and compensate talent without proper motivation. Want a raise? You gotta take matters into your own hands and make it happen. Here’s a few tips
Timing is everything.
Don’t do it on a busy Friday when there’s a ton of stuff going on. Find a time when things are somewhat slow and ask if they have a few minutes to talk alone. It might not be right then but it gets the wheels turning. You might have to mention it a few times knowing most owners even and if they ask what it’s about, be honest and tell them that you want to talk about getting a raise.
Have a good reason
Being on time everyday is part of the job, not a reason for a promotion. What is it that you do that makes you an asset to the business? Don’t be vague, make a solid case
Prepare for resistance
People with money don’t like to just give it away. Even if you have a solid point, it’s their job to negotiate a deal that’s best for them.
Get it in writing
If they say anything other than “No”, get it in writing. This sounds a bit over the top but if everything is legit, this shouldn’t be a problem.
When does the raise go into effect? How much is it for? If they say something along the lines of “If you do X over a certain time, we’ll do Y.” get it in writing. And yes, I’m speaking from experience and yes, doing this saved my ass.
A good owner will take care of his staff.
I’ve mentioned this before but one of the biggest red flags is a place with a high turnover rate. Granted, this is the restaurant industry but talent will always gravitate towards the people who treat them well and pay them what they’re worth. If you’re legit and so is the owner, you won’t have a problem. If you’ve worked for it and earned it and get shot down, take your skills elsewhere.
Have a backup plan
Now this is only for the absolute worst case scenario but again, this is the restaurant industry so cover your ass and have a backup plan in case you get fired. It’s rare as hell but from time to time, you will encounter those douchebags who get offended by the idea of you paying your bills on time and think that you should be grateful just to have a job. Fuck these guys, you’re not going to get anything but attitude and it’s a waste of time to deal with them.
No matter what, having this conversation is going to be awkward but it’s something that you need to do from time to time. It’s either that or continue to sell yourself short while those who have the balls to step up get ahead.
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