Show me the money

Show me the money

Apr 01, 2006

Q: I'm a receptionist and I only earn $1 above minimum wage. Should I ask for a raise?

Lorraine Monheiser List
"While wages for entry level receptionist jobs are often set fairly low, many owners look for your willingness and ability to take on greater responsibility after you complete an initial training period and increase your pay accordingly," says Lorraine Monheiser List, CPA, MEd, a management consultant with Summit Veterinary Advisors in Littleton, Colo.

"Ask yourself whether you're a more valuable employee than you were when you last received a raise," she says. "If you're doing the same job in the same way, it's hard to argue that you deserve more pay." These questions will help you rate yourself:

  • Are you a great client service representative for the hospital?
  • Do you create the best possible experience for clients and pets each time they call or visit?
  • Do you help other employees when they're in a crunch?
  • Are you committed to learning and taking on more tasks?
  • Are you calm in a crisis?
  • Do you deal effectively with angry or upset clients?
  • Are you willing to mentor new receptionists and take responsibility for their training?

"If you're past the initial training period and you've mastered new skills, then your supervisor should be receptive to your request," List says.