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Quiz: Are you ready for a raise?

Get a raise quiz

Sure, you deserve a raise. But do you have the right stuff to get the boss to ring up the register? Our quiz will reveal if you're on the money when it comes to scoring some extra coin from the old coot. (Hint No. 1: Don't call him that.)

  1. You're revved. You're psyched. It's gonna happen. Today's the day you're going to ask Mr. Mulchmouth for that raise you so richly deserve. However, you knew better than to choose any ol' day of the week, willy-nilly. No, indeed, savvy you knew, statistically speaking, your chances for reaping your reward would be greatest on a:

    Monday.
    Wednesday.
    Thursday.
  2. What do you think is best? To just pop the question to Mulchie -- or set up an appointment for your ''pay-up presentation''?

    Pop it!
    Book your act!
  3. Speaking of your presentation, what's the best way to prep for it?

    Rehearse your ''script'' with a friend, who'll play boss -- paste-on mustache and blackened teeth optional.
    Have a general idea of the points you'll make, but skip the rehearsals -- you want to sound fresh, not canned.
  4. You deserve a raise today -- and maybe a break from McDonald's (despite its nonpareil fries) as the only dining spot you can afford. And so you plan to point out to Mr. Mulchmouth how your inventive idea for recycling discarded pencils' eraser tips has saved the company tens of dollars -- just in the past decade alone. Your excellent attendance record will similarly not go unnoted, nor will your willingness to work late and weekends. How about the fact that your health club dues just went up a whopping 20 percent? Should you add that into the mix?

    Absolutely. The more reasons, the merrier -- besides, you probably wouldn't need the health club so much if it weren't for all those fast-food meals your lousy salary limits you to.
    Absolutely not.
  5. All right, howsabout this: You've been picking up the slack for that layabout new hire, Wilberforce. What's more, unbeknownst to the boss, slick Willy's been slipping out early on Friday, badmouthing the boss-man, and boldly printing out his resume in his stinky little cubicle. Now this should go remarked, no?

    No.
    Yes.
  6. OK, it's negotiation time. Let's say you want an 8 percent raise. It's been a year since your last raise, you know the additional amount will bring your salary more in line with what others in your field earn, and you know your company has had a reasonably good year. But perhaps, overarchingly, you know you've earned it, and can enumerate why. If you're a skilled negotiator, you'll ask for:

    Double the amount.
    An additional 2 percent.
  7. What kind of eye contact should you be maintaining with the boss, during your little tete-a-tete?

    Near-continuous. You want to show you're serious and resolved.
    Intermittent is most effective.
  8. The boss crosses her legs, slightly leans forward to you and places her hands, palms-down, in her lap. What would be best for you to do now?

    Admire her ring. You'll get brownie points for picking up her body-language cue.
    Assume a similar posture.
    Lean back, so you don't invade her personal space.
  9. All right, we're talking real dollars and cents now. Regardless of how you get paid -- per hour, per week, per millennium -- how best to state how much more wampum you want?

    In hourly figures.
    Per annum
  10. Bah! Boss-man says no raise for you. Not that you don't deserve one. No, indeed, he concedes you do, but business has been bad, profits are down, his gout is flaring up (he can bring up personal crud; you can't), blah-blah-blah and yada-yada. You rightly conclude:

    End game. You gave it your best shot. There's always next time.
    New game. You know there's still a way to grab victory from the jaws of defeat -- right now!

-- Posted: April 16, 2002

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