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Perhaps it was after months of working your way up the corporate ladder, or maybe you were able to negotiate a salary bump after a performance review. But however the raise came about, your paycheck is fatter.
You can’t wait to share the news with your spouse, friends, and family. But before setting off any fireworks, remember one more person who might be equally thrilled for you and perhaps pushed for the bump on your behalf: your boss.
Who doesn’t like seeing their effort noticed and appreciated? Showing gratitude goes a long way in solidifying your relationship with your manager and helping you build a positive reputation within your organization. And tell you what, a positive reputation is central to getting that next raise or bonus.
There is a right way and a wrong way to go about this.
You don’t want to seem greedy, overly emotional, ungrateful, or reluctant to accept the compensation. That’s why I’ve put together this guide on how to thank your boss for a pay raise. It shares precisely what to say and how to say it in person, via email, or a handwritten note.
Why Should You Thank Your Boss for a Raise?
While some bosses might not care about your gratitude, others may appreciate your thoughtfulness. And even if your boss doesn’t care or you’re thinking, “Well, yeah, of course, I work hard,” or “I deserve this!” thanking them can’t hurt. So here are three reasons why you should thank your boss for a pay raise:
- It’s good manners: If someone does something nice for you, the polite thing to do is say thanks. This advice applies to everyone in your life — including your boss.
- It shows that you’re grateful for their work: Your boss probably played a critical role in convincing the management to grant you a raise. Gratitude shows them that you understand and appreciate what they’ve done for you.
- It sets a positive tone for the future: Showing appreciation can build goodwill and improve your relationship with your manager. They’ll more likely go out of their way for you in the future.
Learn more about the impact of little thanks.
How to Graciously Accept a Pay Raise
Receiving a pay raise is an exciting moment — until you open your mouth or do something that makes your boss regret their decision.
Practice accepting raises with the right tone. It reflects on your professionalism, and if you don’t handle it well, it can change how your boss thinks about you.
You also want to avoid rambling about how much you admire your boss — that sounds insincere and can make others uncomfortable.
While it is essential to be grateful for the bump, please don’t make it all about the extra money. Mention what you need to do next to continue receiving raises in the future. Your boss will appreciate that you understand their generosity came with expectations for growth.
Still, you don’t want to be “that guy” who brags about his accomplishments at work, especially when money is involved. Else, you risk straining your relationships at work. See how arrogance turns into a career liability.
In addition, save the details of your plans for the extra cash for happy hour with friends (not colleagues, please).
I would not recommend buying your boss a personal gift. It makes you come across as someone who kisses up to their boss, but it could also create an awkward dynamic in the office. It could seem that your manager plays favorites, leaving your coworkers offended and resentful.
When to Thank Your Boss for a Pay Raise
Timing is critical when thanking your boss for a pay raise. Showing your appreciation right away will reinforce that your manager made the right decision.
An immediate response might seem like small potatoes. But it will keep your boss from wondering if you appreciate his faith in your work ethic and ability to contribute more value to the company. On the other hand, a note sent after a few weeks of mulling over the raise may seem less enthusiastic.
If you need more time to process the news, at least acknowledge your manager’s gesture with a short email message thanking them for the consideration. You can then follow up in person or craft a more detailed email later.
How to Thank Your boss For a Pay Raise In Person
While an email will be sufficient for some bosses, a face-to-face meeting adds some personal touch to your appreciation. Still, your body language will communicate your gratitude better than words.
Below are a few pointers on how to thank your boss for a raise in-person:
- Prepare a though-out speech
- Mind the time and place
- Keep your tone professional yet appreciate
- Don’t forget to express your commitment to the company
Prepare a thought-out speech
When thanking your boss for a raise, it’s important to be poised and confident. So, If you’re the type to get lost in their words when put on the spot, it’s a good idea to prepare what you’d like to say ahead of time. To do so, jot down some bullet points covering key points you’d like to mention during your conversation with your boss.
Mind the time and place
You should find a quiet moment alone with your boss to extend your gratitude. But don’t take too much of their time – just a few minutes is enough.
It’s important to properly time your thank you: avoid interrupting work duties (unless you have an urgent reason) or making your boss feel like they need to leave an important meeting or event.
Keep your tone professional yet appreciative
Please don’t get too personal when thanking your boss for the pay raise. You want to come across as appreciative without sounding desperate or insincere. Avoid using language that’s overly casual or inappropriate for the workplace, such as slang and expletives.
It’s important to use open and inviting body language during in-person conversations. It’s nonthreatening, conveys confidence, and helps put you and your boss at ease. A great way to do this is by maintaining eye contact and keeping your posture straight without being stiff.
Don’t forget to express your commitment to the company
An APA study revealed that over 87% of employees are more likely to feel motivated and engaged when valued for their contribution. Your boss sure expects that from you after a raise.
So, be precise in explaining how you plan on using the opportunity to benefit the company further and showcase what makes you a true asset to the organization. That also shows you’re not there for the
How to Thank Your Boss for a Pay Raise Through Email
You don’t need to pay postage or walk across the office to find a greeting card to thank your boss for a raise. An email will suffice — but make it a good one!
Sending an email can be more formal than saying “thank you” in person— and it’s a great way to ensure that your appreciation makes its way into your permanent file. But the last thing you want to do is offend your boss with a note that’s too casual or too formal.
Here’s how to craft a thank you email for a pay raise:
Use a subject line that references the raise:
Include a brief subject line in your email that includes the word “raise” or “salary.” It lets the recipient know why they’re getting the email and gives them an incentive to open it. The subject line can be as simple as “Thank You for My Salary Raise,” or something more specific like “Thank You for the Raise – Looking Forward to More Responsibilities.”
Use proper salutation:
Establish the correct tone by addressing your boss using the appropriate title and last name. For example, Dear Mr. Smith or Dear Ms. Jones is a suitable format depending on their name and gender. If unsure of their preferences, stick with something formal like “Dear [their last name].”
Don’t just say, “Thanks for giving me a pay raise” or “Thanks for everything.” Instead, say something like, “Thank you for approving my pay raise request of $X on date Y. I appreciate the opportunity to earn more here at company Z, and I look forward to continuing my career with this organization.”
DON’T downplay the raise:
Even if you expected more (in fact, 31 percent of workers who ask for a raise end up with less than expected), this is not the time to say, “Thank you for my raise, but I wish it was more.” Instead, focus on your appreciation for their generosity and recognition of your efforts. You can always negotiate your salary later.
Keep it short and sweet:
Any more than a few lines, and you risk coming across as unprofessional or even desperate for approval. While it’s essential to keep it sweet, don’t go overboard with gushing words like “best boss ever.” That can seem disingenuous — especially if you’ve had disagreements previously.
Refer to the future and your growth plans:
Your thank-you email is an excellent opportunity to let your boss know how much you enjoy working at the company and convey how excited you are about upcoming projects or opportunities. It’s also an appropriate time to mention if there are specific skills or qualities you would like to improve upon or resources on which you would like to depend more heavily to improve your productivity.
Wondering what to say in a pay raise thank-you email. Here’s an example for your inspiration:
Hi [manager’s last name],
I wanted to drop you a quick line and thank you for my most recent raise.
It would be an understatement to say I was surprised. You’ve always been so generous with your time and guidance, but this is way above and beyond.
I’m grateful for your trust in me and my work at [company name]. This has been a rewarding position, and I’m proud of our accomplishments over the past few years. I look forward to continuing our business successes together as part of the [department name] team.
I hope you’ll one day feel comfortable trusting me enough to take on some more responsibility—it would be an absolute honor.
Many thanks or Best regards,
[Your full name]
How to Thank Your Boss for a Pay Raise Through a Handwritten Note
A handwritten note is a rare treat in this digital age. That could mean a more significant impact.
When crafting your note, it’s crucial to steer clear of generic phrases and instead focus on details about the raise and how it will benefit you. By personalizing your message, you can ensure that your boss feels appreciated for their efforts and understands precisely how meaningful this raise is.
You want your boss to see you put effort into writing, so keep the design simple. Choose a card with solid colors or a minimal pattern. If you are writing it by hand, use lined paper that is easy to read. A clean card will keep the focus on your message.
Let not an error distract your boss from the message of your thank you note. So, take the extra time to double-check the spelling of names, titles, and any other information that might need correcting before handing or mailing it out.
And the sooner your boss receives the note, the better.
And folks, that’s how to thank your boss for a pay raise.
Whether you are thanking your boss for a 4% raise or a 15% pay bump, receive it with grace and dignity and recognize your boss’s effort to bring this about. Again, you can’t afford to forget why you received the raise in the first place. So, work to consistently perform at the highest level and make the organization proud of hiring you.
Best of luck with advancing your career and edging closer to financial freedom!