What's your problem? Low pay

I've got five years experience under my belt but I'm still being paid peanuts. Should I threaten to leave?

by Jeremy Bullmore
Last Updated: 09 May 2012

Q. I work for a music company in A&R. I have five years' experience under my belt but I'm still getting paid peanuts. I want a pay rise and want to know how to get one. A friend of a friend said he could possibly get me a job at a rival company, so should I threaten my boss with leaving?

A. Never use threats unless you're prepared to carry them out. Threats as bluff are potential dynamite. If your bluff is called, you're faced with two deeply undesirable options: stay on, looking extremely foolish and in an even weaker bargaining position; or leave a job you quite like, and probably without a better one to go to.

At the very least, find out rather more about this vague possibility at the rival company.

- Jeremy Bullmore is a former creative director and chairman of J Walter Thompson London. His book Another Bad Day at the Office? is published by Penguin at £6.99. Address your problem to Jeremy Bullmore at: editorial@managementtoday.com. Regrettably, no correspondence can be entered into.

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