Help me get a raise!
September 24, 2012 9:25 AM   Subscribe

How to negotiate a pay-rise. In an art gallery, UK based.

I have been in my current position for a little over a year. I am one member of a small team of people who run a large contemporary art space. I do all things practical, including driving, installation, building, managing a large amount of art works, a lot of admin for our exhibition programme and the active loan policy.

I started this position with no hand-over period as my predecessor had left under a bit of a cloud. I was left to work out the systems of the place and everything about the way he had organised things as he had been in the position for 4+ years. These first few months were very hectic for me, but I kept up with all of my duties and made some large changes to the structure of our organisation which have made the way we work much more efficient.

Since that time our gallery has moved to a much larger premises, I have organised a lot of this move, and the new show at the new space has just opened with a great deal of success.

I feel that now is the time to ask, as we have a while before the next show, I have been in the position long enough, I work harder than I ever has, I feel that the organisation would be in a bad spot if I left. Much of the problem is with the organisation of the place, there are no progress reveiews, no real HR culture, very little opportunity to talk seriously about what we do/have done/should change to make sure things go better.

I will need to speak with the Director, but also with HR. I am pretty sure that they respect me, know I work hard, and because I have to do a lot of this work by myself it would take a while to get someone new up to speed.

Would you advise an email to arrange a meeting, an informal chat with one or both of them, or to set out a document listing some of these points and submit it in that form?

I'm aware I work in a badly paid sector, I am frustrated though with the amount of responsibility I have and basically running out of money 5 days before the end of every month. The pay is that bad - I do not make big or extravagant purchases. I do basically like my job, but I'm looking and seeing much less stressful positions with the same pay if not slightly higher.

I am also trying to sort out my finances and reduce my outgoings - but there's only so much I can accomplish on this side.

Any advice of experience of success or failure with these approaches would be gratefully received.
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (1 answer total)
You need to make the business case for why you deserve a raise. How much has the gallery's revenue increased since you have been there? How much revenue have you specifically added to the business since you arrived? How much do you save in unnecessary expenses each month? You may work hard and be underpaid, but if you aren't bringing more to the table than your predecessor was (or your potential replacement would) your employer has no incentive to increase your pay.
posted by Rock Steady at 9:40 AM on September 24, 2012

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