Why you should not tell coworkers what you make

Tell someone about your pay rise if you want it to be your last.

To: Promotion Strategists

Let me tell you why telling other people about your pay rise is a horrible, no good, awful idea as it relates to career management. The same career advice is true for just telling people what you’re currently making too.

It Makes Your Manager Look Bad & Ruins Your Trust

Good employees deserve pay raises. I think all managers and companies will agree with that. Your manager probably wants big raises too, so they can see your point of view. While your manager may like you and think that you’re worth every penny you make and more, they are responsible for not spending more than their budgeted amount.

Why You Shouldn’t Tell People About Your Pay Rise

The last thing that your boss wants to happen is for you to share with your coworkers how much you make. That is going to give them leverage against your boss so that they too can get a pay raise. Information sharing is good for employees, not for bosses. You want to make life easier for your boss, not for your coworkers if you want to advance your career! The more people that get raises the more in the red this makes your team’s payroll budget. That likely results in a lower bonus for your boss and they look worse to their boss, which stunts both of your career progress.

Also, if you’re trying to make a lot of money and climb the career ladder, here’s some career advice for you. Don’t give your coworkers leverage to ask for more money themselves. Most likely your department needs to make a certain percentage of profit and is allocated, let’s say, 5% raises for the team that year. If you get a 7.5% raise then most likely someone is getting a 2.5%. If you help your coworkers get raises then you can end up on the 2.5% side of it.

Make Your Boss Look Good To Advance Your Career

You don’t want your boss looking bad to their boss! Usually, a manager needs to be promoted before the people under them can. You want your manager looking great, so do everything that you can to do that.

Lastly, it has so much to do with trust. Advancing your career has everything to do with trust – trust me. If your manager isn’t confident that they can give you a big pay rise without you sharing that with your coworkers then you’re not going to get a big pay raise for all of the reasons already stated.

How do you get a promotion fast? Build trust with your manager!

If they can’t trust you to help them on this one little thing, then how can they trust you to run the team or department when they get promoted or a new opportunity comes up that needs a leader?

What to do when someone asks you how much money you make

When someone asks you what you’re making, just tell them “I’m not comfortable talking about that.”. You should not feel bad for denying their request. They’re the one that put you in the uncomfortable position in the first place and they will use what you tell them against you. I’ve seen this done more times than I can count (I’m not a great counter I guess).

Pro Tip

Keep in mind that when it comes to the career ladder, in most cases, it’s a 1-person ladder and everyone is looking out for themselves.

So there you have it! Reasons why you should never share your salary if you want to advance your career. Take it from me, I’ve quadrupled my salary in 5 years and have told nobody. I also know many managers that take rising talent off the fast promotion track for telling others what they make. It’s not technically illegal to tell your coworkers how much you make, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it.

– Your Job Coach, The Promotion Specialist

 

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