Articulating Your Value for a Big Pay Raise

Articulating Your Value for a Big Pay Raise

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How do you articulate your value at the #negotiation table, so that you can ask for a big pay 💰 raise?

How do you craft a compelling unique value proposition statement that captures your accomplishments, values, and potential? 

Here's the link to download the script I mention in this episode. 

Full Episode Transcript:

Hello! Welcome to the ninth episode of Born to Thrive with Jamie Lee. I am your host, Jamie Lee. Tonight, I have the awesome privilege of hosting a negotiation workshop for Smith Alums in Philadelphia, and in about twenty minutes, I have to go catch the train to Philadelphia, so this is going to be a quick but powerful one. I believe that negotiation skills are leadership skills, and that we are all born to lead, influence and thrive. 

We’re talking about the five key practices for negotiation success, the first of which is articulating your value. How do you articulate your unique value so that it is compelling to your negotiation partner? I think it’s really important to think about it in three concrete ways.

  • The first: What is the worth of your contributions, your strengths, your skills?
  • Number two: What do you stand for?
  • Number three: What is your potential?

A really compelling, unique value proposition captures all three of these. The worth of your contributions, what you stand for, and your future potential.

Number one: What is the worth of your contributions? 

Take for example, my recent client. I’m going to call her Karina for this example. She works in digital marketing, and she has contributed undeniable value to her employer. It’s undeniable because she exceeded the revenue goals for her department, and the revenue goals were $10 million and she brought in $12 million. So, that’s value, right? That has undeniable worth.

And yet, she was being compensated below going market averages, and she wasn’t even making six figures. And so, we came up with a negotiation strategy, and it centered around her unique value proposition, which is, “Hey, I want to be compensated according to the value I contribute to this employer, and I’m contributing and I’m exceeding the targets and yet my compensation is not even 1% of the value, the $12 million  that I brought in. So, could we have a conversation about bringing me up to market, so that I’m being compensated for the value I bring?”

You might be listening to this and you think well, I don’t work in sales, I don’t work in a capacity where it’s tied to revenue or figures like that. I don’t know how to articulate my value.

So, think about not just what you do, but how does your employer benefit from what you do? I talked about this in the second episode, Salary Negotiation FAQs.

It’s not just because you do your job that they hire you, they hire you for the end benefit. Because you do your job, there is more security. Because you do your job, there is consistency. Because you do your job, there is smooth operation, happy customers, returning customers, etc.

So, if you’re not sure how to articulate your value, the worth of your contributions, strengths and talents, think about all the things that you do contribute.

In fact, I would strongly suggest you list them. Make a list on paper or in a Google Doc. What have you done? What have you accomplished?

And ask, so what? Because you did this, they benefited by X, Y, Z. Think about, I generated the reports, so they have visibility into operations, and because they have visibility into operations, they can make decisions faster, and because they are making decisions faster, we are more profitable.  

Number two: What do you stand for?

So in other words, I’m asking about your values, not just what is your value. What are your values? What do you stand for? Most of my coaching clients, they stand for serving others.

I had a client who worked in the government contractor industry, and for this person, it was the value of serving the needs of others that really shone through, that was really important for him.

He was doing his job, not just so that he can say he did a great job, he did his job so that other people’s lives improved. And so he articulated that in his unique value proposition. "I’m here to serve others. I’m here to serve the mission and goal of this organization, because the goal and mission of this organization is to improve the lives of those we serve." That’s kind of a circular statement, but you understand what I’m saying. 

Finally: What is your potential?

What can you accomplish? I think this is so important for women negotiators, because we tend to be rewarded for the work we have done, not necessarily for the potential that we bring. Not everyone sees our leadership potential unless we have already done all the work and exceeded targets.

So, it behooves us to articulate what that potential is. What can you do? What can you contribute? We think about potential, and we think about all the great things we can be doing, and sometimes instead of having this become an inspiration or a motivator, it can become a de-motivator for some people.

It can be like, oh, I’m not living up to my potential. But here’s the definition of potential: potential is doing what you can. What can you do? I think that potential is probably tied to your sense of purpose. Why are you here? What are you serving? What are the values you’re honoring? So it’s really closely tied to your values. 

For me, when I do this exercise, I see that my potential is to help unlock other people’s potential so that they can thrive. And when I see that because of the work I do, women are closing their gender wage gaps, people are asking for what they want, people are making decisions that are self-empowered and give them a sense of greater joy, fulfillment and happiness, I see that I am doing my job. I see that I am living up to my potential.

And that’s why this podcast is called Born to Thrive, because I believe that we are all born to lead, influence and thrive, and learning negotiation skills can help us achieve that purpose. 

I’ve written a script that outlines the process that Karina went through, what her negotiation conversation was like so that you can see for yourself what it is like to articulate for your value, and to respond to pushback, to excuses like oh, we don’t have the money in the budget or whatever, if you are negotiating for bigger pay, promotion etc.

And I would like to share this script with you. If you email me at - and I spell my name J-A-M-I-E -, I will send the script to you because I believe it is my purpose to help other people live up to their potential, and if it helps you, if it contributes value to your negotiation to see how this one successful negotiation went, then that’s great!

I love that. I’d love to help you close your wage gap. I’d love to help you live up to your potential. So, feel free to write me at to get this free script on how to ask for a big pay raise. Thank you, and I hope that this helps you thrive. Bye!

Five Minute Exercise for Speaking Your Value

Five Minute Exercise for Speaking Your Value

What are the 5 Key Practices for Negotiation Success?

What are the 5 Key Practices for Negotiation Success?