The Truth About Making Your Job Pay

total compensationFor most people, having a primary job is their main income stream.  But the sad truth is, many people don’t do what they really need to do to make their job pay.  There is so much money that people leave on the table when it comes to their jobs, and if you’re looking to maximize your income, that needs to stop.

Here are some simple tactics that you can look into today to make your job pay more.


Vacation and Sick Leave

Most people get vacation and sick leave at their workplace.  However, it is estimated that only 57% of employees use all of their paid vacation each year.  That’s sad, and it also amounts to taking a pay cut.

If your employer offers you 2 weeks of paid vacation per year, that means that your salary is based on 50 weeks of work, not 52 weeks of work.  Or, in other terms, not taking your two week vacation is the equivalent of taking a 4% pay cut.  Get 3 weeks?  That’s a 6% pay cut…  Do you see where I’m going with this?

If you want to get more from your job, STOP working and enjoy your paid vacations.  It’s part of your compensation.


Other Perks

Many employers offer their employees a myriad of other perks that aren’t necessarily paid compensation, but definitely make the job pay better.  For example, most employers offer discounts on gym memberships, day care, cell phone service, and more.  I’m a big believer that you should go through your monthly expenses and see what perks and discounts you can get because of your employer.

Saving money each month adds to your bottom line, so saving a little here and there really adds up.


Making Your Job Pay Before You Start

Most people don’t think about the fact that your starting salary and compensation package are what will determine your compensation for years to come.  As such, it is incredibly important that you maximize your pay and compensation when doing salary negotiations.  Most employers will have a range they want to offer you when you start – and they always start at the bottom of the range.

Simply asking for more money will typically get you a bump without even breaking a sweat.  Now, make sure that you don’t put a sour taste in your potential employer’s mouth before you even start work, but it is pretty commonplace to ask for a higher starting base when accepting a new position.  Give it a shot.


Making Your Job Pay If You Want To Leave

If you want to leave your job, you can still make your job work for you and help you get paid.  A big way to start is networking.  7 out of 10 people found a six-figure job by networking with people they knew in their industry.  So, if you’re considering a move, start building strong relationships with your peers at similar companies.

Maybe you can go to conferences and conventions to meet people in your niche, or start following blogs in your niche to see what’s out there.

Second, you should look and see if your company offers any type of severance packages.  A great eBook on this is How to Engineer Your Layoff.  If you are thinking of quitting, there is no reason not to consider getting paid for it.

What other tips do you have on making your job pay?

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  1. I am adamant about taking advantage of my employment benefits – all of them. I use my benefits as much as possible, everything from dental, medical, pension, and vacation. Sick time, of course not – it’s “stealing time” if you take it when you aren’t sick, and it’s not mine to take unless I am sick. But vacation, definitely!

  2. I like the idea of asking for a raise immediately. You’re right: if you don’t start high up the ladder, you’ll have to make up for that at a painfully slow pace later unless you play the “switch companies” game often enough to make up for lost time.

  3. There peculiarities of every job, you can take advantage of. For example, I can bank sick leave and use it for retirement purposes. As a teacher, I can work during my conference periods, summers and these earnings are subject to a supplemental pension. I also take advantage of a flexible spending account (FSA) to use pre-tax dollars for healthcare expenses. All ou have to do is look for them!

  4. Great article. I also believe that every person should take everything they can from their employers. After all, you are working hard making your boss rich, so why not profit in the process?

    It may be obvious to many, but some people do not take advantage of offered pension programs or 401k plans with matching contributions. Whether or not you think you will stay with your current company, these programs are a no brainier for putting free money in your pocket.

  5. These are nice points to tackle. As an employee, we have to take advantage of the benefits that we have as well as what we can have from them since their business will not run without the employees.

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