Got Rejected for a Raise? Here’s What You Can Do

One of the main reasons people seek an MBA is to increase their salary. Starting salaries for MBAs can go well above $150,000, and that’s not including sign-on bonuses.

But asking your boss for a raise can be scary. And sometimes your plans to ask for a raise can even be shut down. Melody Wilding, executive coach and author of Trust yourself: stop overthinking and channel your emotions to succeed at workHe recently offered advice on what to do if you ask for a raise and things don’t go as planned.


Being rejected never feels good. But, Wilding says, it’s important to give yourself time to process your feelings while also diplomatically responding to rejection. Here is an example of how to do that:

“Thanks for sharing. As expected, I am disappointed that the company is unable to honor my request. However, I am committed to giving my best to the organization and look forward to continuing the conversation on how I can be an even greater contributor.” valuable”.

Wilding says this response should express appreciation as well as resilience.

“It has also opened the door for a follow-up conversation to discuss compensation in the future,” says Wilding.


If you are turned down for a raise, it can be helpful to understand the reason behind the turn down. Wilding recommends asking his boss open-ended questions like the following:

What is contributing to your decision?

How are compensation and performance evaluated?

What could you be doing more?

“Getting more information can help guide your decision to stay and stand up for yourself, or create an exit plan and focus your energy on a new role where you’ll be more valued,” says Wilding.


One of the best ways to get a raise is to demonstrate your growth and progress. This could be presenting a case study to executives, or even pursuing continuing education or an extracurricular activity.

“Another simple strategy is to start one-on-one with your boss by reviewing recent earnings,” says Wilding. “It’s an organic way to make sure they’re regularly updated on your successes. Be sure to frame your progress in terms of how it positively affects your customers or organization as a whole, not just how it makes you look good.”

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Sources: Harvard Business Review, Stacy Blackman Consulting, P&Q

Next page; Darden Essay Tips

University of Virginia, Darden School of Business

The University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business is known for its intensive MBA program, one that hones decision-making skills and develops leaders. Ranked 14th in P&Q’s ‘Best Business Schools’ rankings, Darden seeks out the best and brightest students.

Trisha Nussbaum, MBA Admissions Coach at Fortuna Admissions, recently delved into Darden’s three short essays and offered advice on how applicants should approach each one.


Darden’s first essay message asks applicants the following:

Since you will be forming lifelong connections with your classmates that extend beyond the classroom, what is important for your classmates to know about you that isn’t on your resume? (200 words)

This essay is about getting to know your personality and interests beyond a surface level. Nussbaum suggests approaching this essay by deepening and personalizing.

“Instead of making blanket statements like ‘I love swimming,’ talk specifically about experiences you’ve had with swimming and the impact it’s had on your life, relationships, career, etc.,” says Nussbaum. “With just 200 words, choose to focus on one or two passions, motivations, or interests that are most important to you. Then describe why it is important to you and how you will share it with your peers in a way that allows you to facilitate meaningful connections.”


Darden’s second essay message asks applicants the following:

Describe a tangible example that illuminates your experience in promoting an inclusive environment and what you would contribute to creating an inclusive global community in Darden. (300 words)

This message is designed to assess your understanding of Darden’s values ​​and how you fit into the Darden community. Nussbaum says it’s important to note that this essay is a behavioral style question.

“Start by introspecting about the spirit of the question and consider the types of examples that demonstrate shared values ​​and conscientiousness in your leadership,” says Nussbaum.

It’s also important to note that of the three essays, this is the longest and requires a bit of structure to write.

“Spend the essay introduction giving a brief example of a time you promoted an inclusive environment,” says Nussbaum. “This example should demonstrate your motivation and your ability to drive change through leadership.”

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Darden’s third essay message asks applicants the following:

Right now, how would you describe your short-term post-MBA goal in terms of industry, role, geography, company size, and/or mission, and how does it align with your long-term vision for your career? (200 words)

Like the second essay, you’ll want to approach this last essay with a well-thought-out structure. Nussbaum recommends beginning the third essay by illustrating your short-term goals in as much detail as possible.

“Short-term goals involve your almost immediate plans, whether it’s for an internship and/or two to three years out of high school,” says Nussbaum. “During this period, you need to gain specific skills or experience that are essential to achieving your long-term vision. Given the scant word count and the simple fact that Darden doesn’t ask about your past experience, spend less time, if any, discussing related details or skills that can be found on your resume to explain your short-term goal. ”.

Sources: Fortuna Admissions, P&Q, P&Q

Next page: An MBA from Gies helps a professional increase their salary by 43%.

The growth of online MBA programs has skyrocketed in recent years, largely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, data shows that there were more full-time MBA students enrolled in online programs than in residential programs during the 2020-21 academic year.

Fortune He recently sat down with Eric Scott, an online MBA student at the University of Illinois, to learn more about his online MBA experience and how it helped him get a 43% pay raise.


One of the biggest benefits of an online MBA program is flexibility, which part-time or in-person MBA programs typically lack.

“As a CMO, I have a lot of demands on that job and then having a family,” says Scott. “It’s still a big time commitment, but it’s nice to be able to do everything inside my own house and be around if I’m needed. But I’ll tell you, Illinois does a fantastic job, and there’s a reason they have such a fantastic reputation as innovators in the online education space. When you attend the live sessions, you really feel like you’re there. It’s so interactive. You can participate in work groups and the teacher will call you randomly as if you were in class”.

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For Scott, the reasons for pursuing an MBA are twofold. On the one hand, the degree helps you to be more competitive in the world of work.

“The MBA specifically is very complete,” he says. “I want to have a very complete training, so it would help me to strengthen some areas that may have been a weakness for me.”

On the other hand, an MBA has helped Scott become a better leader.

“I’ve always felt like I’ve been a good leader, but he’s taking me to the next level,” says Scott. “In addition to advancing in my career, there is a better financial situation, or an increase in total salary compensation. Since being in the program (and graduating in May) I have seen a promotion to the CMO level and a 43% increase in compensation. It really has been a great move, a life changing experience and so enjoyable overall.”

A big part of getting that 43% pay raise, Scott says, was communicating the value of an MBA to his boss.

“Reviewing, having touchpoints with my boss and communicating different parts of my learning journey and what I’m learning and the value I’m bringing helped win me a promotion,” says Scott. “And then just show it every day. I also bring this to strategy meetings and come prepared, having a better understanding of what we are talking about and being able to guide our teams in better strategic decisions has also helped.”


In terms of advice for prospective online MBA students, Scott recommends finding a program that fits your needs. He also recommends connecting with others to weigh the pros and cons of specific programs.

“Reach out to current students in the program because everything you see online isn’t necessarily going to be the real story,” says Scott. “When you’re going through the research process and the decision-making process, definitely talk to current students and get their perspective on the program, not just the positives, but the negatives as well. It is important to weigh them.”

Sources: Fortune, Inside Higher Ed

The post Was Rejected for a Raise? Here’s What You Can Do first appeared on Poets&Quants.


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