Every year, an average employee is expected to receive an average pay raise of 3 percent. For top performers, another 1 percent of salary raise is given. While this would clearly not make a huge difference, a lot of companies are still struggling to offer their workers such a raise. This is not surprising, though, considering how terribly the economy is still struggling. Therefore, you must appreciate every bit of raise you are to receive. Nevertheless, there are things you can do to make sure you are in a position to ask for a raise that is significantly higher than average. Here’s what you should do:

1. Get to work earlier than everyone else. Make it your goal not just to be at work on time, but early. You may not feel so appreciated for being an early bird, but remember that this effort of yours isn’t unnoticed. Remember that you are always being watched. Employers are easily impressed by those who show commitment to their work by consistently coming to work ahead of others.

2. Avoid complaining. All of us have our own opinions on things, and some of them are negative. But you don’t need to let other people know about your problems with your boss or the workplace. Instead, let them hear what you think can be done to make things better in the workplace. Talk to your boss in a professional manner about your constructive ideas. This will add to your value as a member of the organization, which will surely make you deserving of a pay raise.

3. Set your own goals. Employers appreciate staff members who can set their own goals because it shows great desire to be better in the workplace. Put your goals into writing and ask if you could discuss it with your boss. Don’t forget to document everything you have accomplished as you will find this information valuable come assessment time.

4. Solicit advice from your supervisor. You don’t have to wait for the performance assessment to know what aspects of your job you need to improve on. If you are serious about getting better and getting noticed, talk to your supervisor and ask if there’s anything you should to become a better performer. By doing this, you can show initiative and desire to learn and to succeed, and this is what employers want to see in their workers.

5. Volunteer to get additional responsibility. If you think you have some time to spare, volunteer to take on certain projects. If another department needs extra hands, don’t hesitate to offer yours. Besides, this is a great opportunity for you to learn about what other employees do in their department. You can also use this chance to meet different people who will be part of your network.

Remember that being a kiss-ass to your boss isn’t the way to reach career advancement. And so, be careful not to overdo things so you won’t be thought of as someone who’s trying way too hard to be noticed.

Author's Bio: 

Cecile Peterkin is a certified career and retirement coach, and a registered member of the Career Professionals of Canada and the International Coach Federation. She is also the Founder and Senior Career Strategist at Cosmic Coaching Centre, provider of career and life management services for middle managers and mid-career professionals across Canada, United States and Europe