It’s a great time to evaluate your worth with your employer. If the thought of that makes you feel anxious, take a few minutes and think about the bigger picture. You deserve to be paid what you are worth. For women, its sometimes hard to hold that ground and believe in ourselves. Sometimes, you become braver when you think of a bigger reason for the raise; economic stability for your family, for example.

There are a few steps you can take to ensure a successful meeting with your boss. Preparing ahead of time will make a big difference in your success.

1. Gather information about compensation at other spas or clinics that are similar to yours. is a good resource. You will see that the median salary for a standard esthetician in Oregon is $49,900/year. The low end of the scale is $40,700 and the high end is $64,000.

Consider checking in with your colleagues or peers in your network who can give you a reality check for what is common in your local area. Be sure to consider commission rates as well as hourly wages.

2. List your accomplishments. Spend some serious time writing out things you have done to support the success of the practice over the last year. Review your major job responsibilities and write down measurable achievements, such as ‘Maintained 90% rebook rate’, ‘Sold $4000 retail skincare products monthly’. Be sure to include soft revenue generating skills, such as ‘Engaged in 1000 follower social media connections with clients during pandemic quarantine’, or ‘created virtual consultations’.

3. Know what you want but be flexible. If you know this has been a challenging financial year, perhaps negotiating additional time off or a bonus upon reaching defined goals is a better option than requesting a wage increase. Perhaps asking for an increase in commission would help you reach your goals instead of an hourly increase.

4. Ask questions during the meeting. You will be perceived as being a stronger part of the team if you invest in the entire success of the practice. “What are the goals for the spa this year?”, “What are your goals for my role?”, ‘How can I support the team?’ in 2021.

5. Be prepared for negative feedback. You probably already have an idea of how your supervisor, office manager or team leader will respond. Listen carefully and try not to get defensive. Thank them for their honesty. ‘I hear what you are saying and I appreciate the feedback. I’d like to make a plan to improve in the future.’

If you feel overwhelmed, you can ask for a few days to think about the feedback. ‘Thanks for the honest feedback. I do want to be a solid member of the team. Can I get about a half hour on your schedule next week to discuss a little more after I’ve had time to think about things?’

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