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17 Ways Women Have Successfully Gotten Raises Or Promotions

Four letters to describe you: B-O-S-S.

We asked the ladies of the BuzzFeed Community to tell us what they did in order to successfully ask and get 👏 that 👏 raise 👏 or 👏 promotion 👏. Here are some of their experiences and best tips:

1. Always go the extra mile with your work, because higher ups *will* notice, and you'll be the first person who comes to mind when a new position opens up.

Imagine Television Lee Daniels Entertainment / 20th Century Fox

"I had been working at this restaurant for several years, and when I became old enough to legally serve alcohol, I probably took it way too seriously — I always memorized the featured wines, rotating beers, and specials, and tried to make all of my guests leave with a smile. Eventually our owner hired a new manager, who later announced she would be managing the new restaurant we were opening. I hadn't known this new manager for long, but she saw how well I did with training new servers she had hired. I brought up the fact if she ever needed an assistant manager, I would love to learn more and be of service. After talking to the owner, they agreed to give me the position!" —Alana M.

2. Use check-in meetings as a time to discuss potential raises, especially if you've taken on new responsibilities that aren't acknowledged in your current salary. Come prepared knowing the salary you'd like, and with tangible receipts of why you deserve it.

Deedle-Dee Productions / NBC

"When I had some responsibilities added to my plate at work, I did some research to see what those around me in similar roles were making. I have a standing update meeting with my boss every week, and I asked for the raise during that meeting. I led with that agenda item to get it out of the way. I explained how the way I parcel out my work hours has changed due to my new responsibilities, and how my day looks more like that of people with higher titles. I then said, 'And with that in mind, I am wondering if you can make my compensation match these new duties.' She was very matter-of-fact and asked how much I made and what I was looking to make. I had a number in mind and said it confidently. She said she would look at the budget and get back to me. Three days later she told me she would give me the raise. It was actually super simple in the end, and I wish I had asked for it sooner." —jzarza

3. If you want that promotion, you have to voice that desire! As obvious as it is in your head, it might not be as obvious to other people — so there's no harm in being straightforward.

ABC Studios

"One of my colleagues who had the same title and role as me left the company, and my boss was going to replace her with someone more junior and with less experience. I took this as an opportunity to ask to be promoted, so I could take on the role of training the new employee and my boss wouldn’t have to. I expected to only have the new employee report to me, but now six months later, I have four direct reports! Funny thing is, my boss wanted to promote me to a managerial role but she wasn’t sure if that was what I wanted, because I had always been too afraid to express my desire. Once I told her that was indeed what I wanted, she made it happen! People aren’t mind readers. If you want something, you have to come right out and say it! Even if you don’t get the promotion right away, at least your boss will know what you want." —Jaymie M.

4. Just ask, especially if the mood is already right — aka, after your boss has showered you with a positive performance review. A cherry on top, shall we say.

Lucasfilm

"I went into my performance review thinking that, if it goes well, I’ll ask for a raise at the end of it. For example I'll say, 'In light of our discussions here today, I think my performance demonstrates my worth to the organization and I’d like to discuss the possibility of a raise.' Studies show that women rarely ask for raises, so if you do, your boss will realize your value and will be likely to say yes. I’ve never been told no! That being said, I do spread my requests out and ask every other year to increase the chance of getting a yes." —Elise G.

5. It doesn't even have to be an official "Can I have a raise?" conversation — speak up whenever the moment allows you to!

Deedle-Dee Productions / NBC

"I was out for lunch with my new boss and his boss (Gary). We were having a casual conversation when I mentioned that I was saving up for a house. Gary blatantly asked what I had in savings, and even though I thought it was too personal, I told him. He made some remark about how that wasn’t enough, and I don’t know what took over me (because I’m fairly shy especially around higher-ups) but I said, ‘Well, my one year review is coming up and I’ve been running two stores for you guys,’ and I winked. And it worked. I told him my base salary and he got me a 13% raise." —Leah K.

6. Find a partner who has the same goal as you — asking for that raise is hard, and having a support system is important, especially when it strengthens your own argument/case.

Al Roker Entertainment / TLC

"After receiving an exceptional annual review, another female coworker and I were being asked to complete this amount and scope of work with such small amounts of time, so as a team, we went to our male boss and laid out our points: We were both completing significantly more work (both quantity and quality wise), being asked to improve processes within our office, and being trusted to train other individuals. We approached the situation with detail and logic, making sure that we went into that room having thought of any possible argument; ultimately, we worked as a team and relied on each other to reach our mutual goal. It was great to have a sounding board, but it was also really good to know that my feelings were valid, because she was also feeling the same way. —Claire Chamberlain

7. When someone new (and hopefully more understanding) steps into a managerial position, snatch that opportunity up.

Warner Bros. Television

"At my previous job many years ago, I was hired at such a low rate. The Campus President and Director of Admissions treated me like I worked for reception. I did all the work on campus, including corporate reports, registrar, admissions, and community outreach. When a new female campus president came in, she scheduled 15-minute sessions with all employees. My session lasted 1.5 hours and I told her what needed to be fixed, showed her my job description compared to what I actually did, and she saw my value and where I was going. A month later, I got a raise and new title, along with training opportunities with her and the Dean. Before she left the company, she gave me another raise. She was and still is my hero!" —Amanda L.

8. Do your homework and look up hard numerical data to make your case even stronger.

World of Wonder / VH1

"At my annual review I told my boss that I grew the brand by X amount of new orders and that I knew what our numbers were, so I was positive that my hard work had paid off. He was impressed, gave me a huge raise, and told me I was up for a promotion. Basically, be prepared. If you have access to data, look up the annual sales, etc. Do your homework, be confident, and speak up." —aintnobodygottimefodat

9. If you've taken on more responsibilities from the time you were hired, that's more than enough reason to put those on the table and ask for proper compensation.

Lee Daniels Entertainment / Fox

"At my second annual review of my first job, I brought a list of duties from the job description I was hired from, and the significantly longer list I had compiled of my current job duties. I presented both lists side-by-side as evidence of my growth, and asked for a title change and 15% raise. My boss agreed with my request and took it to his boss. I was granted both requests, though I had to wait several months for the fiscal year to end before they were made effective. I thought for sure that they would counter with a lower percentage increase, but they didn’t. I should have asked for 20% or 25% instead." —Emma S.

10. Instead of feeling like you're asking for a huge favor, frame the situation so that you're the one helping to solve an existing problem — in polite terms, of course.

TriStar Pictures

"I framed it as a way to solve *his* problem. I wanted to move to a different department, which was hemorrhaging workers, and that came with a promotion and raise. I told my boss, 'Well you need good, reliable people, and I'm both. You'd have a worker you'd trust not to call out every week, not leave early, and to do their job.' He agreed and promoted me, and then once more when he saw how well I did in the new department. The major thing was framing it as 'I can solve YOUR problem' instead of framing it as something for my benefit, though obviously it was." —thetasigma

11. When imitating a hand-on-hips power pose gets old, sing a lil' tune in your head that makes you feel ten-times bigger and more confident:

20th Century Fox

"I sang 'I Have Confidence' from The Sound of Music in my head on the way to my boss's office. Somehow it always makes me believe in myself. :)" —j40bc958f1

12. When someone as equally qualified as you — especially a man — gets promoted while you don't, point it out in a professional manner, argue your case, and be patient.

Much Digital Studios

"I’m an engineer and I was hired right after graduation at the same time as another new grad, who is a man. Fast forward two and a half years later, he received a promotion from associate to full engineer. There was nothing for me, nada. Even though we did the same job with the same high-quality work. So I went to my boss and said, 'I noticed Jim* (changed his name) got a promotion. He definitely deserved it, but I believe that I am equally qualified.' My boss promised he would put me in the pipeline, and a few months later I got my promotion." —Annie Beth

13. Just ask! It's not always a drawn-out process. Be straightforward and know your worth.

Broadway Video / NBC

"I work at McDonald’s and learned that the new hires were immediately making what I was making before my promotion. One day after a very stressful shift, when I was given more responsibility than what my title entailed, I approached my favorite manager (who is a woman) and told her that I deserved more money for the responsibilities I was given, and that it wasn’t fair that people with no training were making almost exactly as much as me. I also said I didn’t plan on leaving and I just wanted the money I deserved. Less than a week later, my general manager came up to me and gave me a raise." —Stella J.

14. The gender wage gap is real, but you'll beat it with your frankness and smarts.

20th Century Fox Television

"I worked 60-ish hours a week, usually 12 days at a time with one day off in between, and got a yearly raise of $1 per/hr. I was WILDLY underpaid. I wore many hats: main receptionist, dispatch supervisor, dispatcher for most of the west coast, office manager, as well as the person who trained all the new hires and had written our training manual. The men in the company — most of which who answered to me and joined the company after me — made more than I did. I sent my bosses an email asking for a meeting to discuss my pay rate, while outlining everything I have done for the company. I did my research to find out what the median pay rate was for every job role I filled. I sat down and had a very frank discussion with the company owner and ended up getting another $3/hr raise. It wasn't much, but it did put me closer to what I should have been making from the get-go." —libbymonstar

15. Keep track of your own progress, so when a favorable opportunity comes your way, you're ready to prove exactly why they should hire you — onto greener pastures!

Epic Records

"As a Target supervisor, I was required to write my own review. If you want a bigger raise, then you have to point out everything you did to make the company profitable. I was neck-deep in my review when an assistant manager position opened up at Starbucks. Since I had research on how I benefitted Target fresh in my mind, it made it easy to sell myself for that position. I ended up getting paid a lot more to do basically the same thing at a different place. For other aspiring managers, ask for that job. Tell them why you deserve it, because you do!" —erinleat

16. Most rules aren't 100% set, especially if you make a damn good case for yourself. Not to be totally cheesy, but if there's a will, there's a way!

NBC

"My mid-level manager had been laid off for about four months, and I was doing most of his job already, even before he left. The department head casually mentioned over lunch one day that they were looking for a replacement for my old boss. I made a spreadsheet of all the duties and projects I was already doing, as well as things I'd done that had been the manager's responsibility prior to his departure, and presented it to my department head. The company culture was no degree = no management position, but I told him I would not train someone else to be my 'boss,' and then have to do all the work myself. I could be the replacement, and if the company was smart, they'd want to keep me. I'd been there for four years and came with over a decade of experience AND was just two semesters away from a BA in my field. The next day, I was given a new title (that didn't include the word manager) and a 15k raise. No new boss, and when I finish my BA next month, I get to be a 'real manager.'" —b4e899600a

17. Use leverage whenever you have it — if they don't bend, then they clearly don't see the value you bring, and maybe you're better off somewhere else.

Electric Entertainment / TNT

"I hated my job. I got paid so little and people treated me horribly. So I applied for a temp job and got it — I figured doing a temp job that paid more would be better than staying at my current job. The next day I went to my boss’s office and told her that I was leaving because I got offered more money elsewhere. She and her boss went into a scramble, and they offered me $10,000 to stay. I took it. When I told my guy friends about it, they didn’t even blink. Apparently this is a technique people use to get more money all the time." —squirrelwaver

You on your way to the bank with your new raise or promotion:

Fox

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The submissions used in this post have been edited for length and clarity.

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