The past year and a half have been difficult for all of us, especially those working in senior living and care. On top of the stress of health and safety concerns, many employees have been asked to take on more responsibilities and longer shifts, often with no additional compensation.

As things (finally) begin to return to normal, you may want to consider asking for a raise or promotion, reflecting the new work you have taken on. This is something you can absolutely do, but keep in mind that preparation is critical. In this article, we will go over the factors that can help boost your confidence and set you up for a positive response.

This same approach can be used whether you are in an administrative role or caring directly for seniors. Just make sure that you are tailoring everything to your specific position.

Be strategic about timing

In general, it is best to ask for a raise or promotion on a Friday (or whatever the day is before their “weekend.” This is because people tend to be in a better mood at this time. And while Monday might seem like the best bet so they can jumpstart the process, they are more likely focused on other things at the start of the week, and a request like this will not be as well received.

It also pays (we hope literally) to be strategic about timing in terms of your performance. For example, if you were recently recognized for an accomplishment. And the opposite is also true: do not ask for a raise right after you drop the ball by forgetting to answer an email or something.

Focus specifically on performance

When you do have this conversation, keep it focused on the subject at hand. Schedule a one-on-one meeting with the appropriate manager and keep the topic on your performance. You do not want to use your bills or living expenses as a reason for a boost in salary – it should be merit-based and focused on the value you bring to the senior care facility.

Come fully prepared

You should be able to justify why you deserve a raise with real industry data. For example, know what the average income is for your position. Salaries for those working in healthcare and senior living can vary greatly – be sure you factor in the geographic region, educational background, and years of experience.

It also would not hurt to be ready with a backup plan. For example, sometimes the budget for a raise does not exist; in this case, can you have additional time off or increased job flexibility? Think about the things that would improve your work-life balance and overall job satisfaction and be ready to counter-offer.


Photo by Micheile Henderson on Unsplash