Earlier this month New York State’s legislature passed a plan that would raise NYC’s minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2018 and to raise the rest of the state’s minimum wage to $12.50.
For many people, this is good news.
You want to earn more at work, what is your strategy?
Strategy #1. Waiting for the $15 minimum wage to come true
That day will come and you can wait for it. But let’s face it, the “Fight for $15″ movement started in late 2012 and 4 long years later NYS’s legislature passed a plan to raise the minimum wage by 2018.
Sure, you can wait for it to happen. Let’s see, 6 years for a $5 an hour increase? But you haven’t considered the increase in living expenses and inflation.
Strategy #2. Learning new skills to make yourself more valuable
It’s all about supply and demand. I hate to break it to you, but certain jobs only have certain value.
Last time I checked, coal mining or cleaning stalls requires some serious hard (probably even dangerous) work, but neither will ever be a high paying job, not even close. Or just because you’ve been doing something for 2 decades, doesn’t change the value of the work being done unless you’re doing it 20 times faster or better.
That’s not to say that I have a problem with people working hard or with experience, but I’d like you to re-examine reality. If you’re serious about making more in your job, learning new skills, especially highly desirable skills is the way to go.
Strategy #3. Asking for a raise at your current job
Since you’re my reader, I assume you’re doing valuable work. But chances are you don’t get paid what you deserve. Here’s the thing: even if your boss likes your work, he won’t give you a raise unless you ask.
Maybe you think it’s no big deal, maybe you’re scared to ask, maybe you tried and failed in the past. But just think about how much of a difference even a small increase can have, say $2000 more a year with only an hour’s negotiation effort. That’s over $10,000 increase in 5 years if you put that into a savings account (say, savings account with 6% APR).
There are many websites that can help you understand your fair market value, just check out salary.com or Payscale.com.
The bottom line: Hoping is not a strategy.
(This article is originally published on Democrat & Chronicle)
Check out some of the unfamiliar jobs that pay six figures.