SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — Prices rose 7% last year, the largest one-year jump in nearly 40 years. Meanwhile, the typical raise in 2022 is expected to be less than 4%. So even though you're making more money, your actual buying power is going down.
“This is a problem that's not going away anytime soon,” said Ray Major, Chief Economist at SANDAG.
And unfortunately, there's no escaping the pain of higher prices.
“Fuel costs are up by 50%. Used automobiles are up 35%. If you have purchased steak in a store recently, it's up by 21%,” said Major.
And Major expects inflation to remain high for at least two years.
There are several reasons for prices skyrocketing, including supply chain issues. But the news isn't all bad because your ability to make a lot more money hasn't been this good in years.
“Employees, take advantage of this market right now,” said Phil Blair, with Manpower Staffing. “It's not going to last forever.”
Blair said there are so many job openings right now, and so few people to fill them, that this is the time to ask for a raise.
But simply demanding one from your boss is a bad idea. Instead, Blair says to prove your value and keep things positive.
“I want to stay here. I love this company. I've done this, this, and this and I'm willing to do...because I understand where you're coming from, Mr. Employer,” said Blair. “That goes a long way as opposed to, ‘What are you going to pay me?’”
Blair also suggests keeping a diary of things you do to help the company, such as, bringing in new accounts or coming up with cost-saving ideas.
That way you can remind your boss of your value with specifics. Then, once you get that bigger raise, keep proving to your boss that you're worth the extra money.
“You went from middle value to high value, and I didn't resent paying you that because you're bringing me value, but I'm not going to pay you inflated wages when I can get an entry level person to do 90% of what you're doing,” said Blair.
Blair knows some companies just can't afford to give employees big raises, so maybe you can work out other compensation, like more vacation days.
If your work still won't budge, this may be a good time to update your resume.
“For the good of your long-term career, you need to look elsewhere.”
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