The $1 Million Career Mistake

The $1 Million Career Mistake

According to a new survey by Salary.com, most of us are filing "ask for a raise" into the same mental recesses as "exercise more" and "take a daily multivitamin." That is, we know we should ... but we don't.

The survey, reported in MarketWatch, found that only 41% of employees are straight-up requesting more money, though 84% of employers expect that their employees will ask. Which means that employers are prepared to shell out more bucks, if only their employees would pull the trigger.

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The problem is simple: If we don't ask, we won't receive.

Many of us stay silent because we worry about incurring the wrath of our employers, or even worse, being let go for our audacity. But we may be over-thinking things: The same survey found no employer that had ever fired (or demoted) an employee over a simple salary ask.

RELATED: The 10 Reasons You're Not Getting a Raise

You might not think that small raises add up, but they do—in a big way. In fact, Salary.com also conducted a study that determined that at the end of a 45-year career, asking for a 4% raise every three years from a starting salary of $50,000 instead of accepting a 1% raise every year with a starting salary of $45,000 will leave you over a million dollars richer by the time you bow out.

So go ahead, ask. And (hopefully) receive.

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