How To Keep Employees From Asking For a Raise


Want to keep your team motivated and focused on their work, without having to worry where to pull funds in order to pay them more?

Shortly after a speech I delivered on “Provoking Greatness,” here in Baltimore, Maryland, I had a chance to grab coffee with a hustler.

Hustlers are priceless in business. They are the ones who always show up early, and stay late when needed. They look for ways to help without being asked, have an awesome attitude, and will do whatever it takes to get the job done.

David is hustler. He started his career hustling to get cars quickly (valet), found his way to success in sales, and is now looking to take the next leap. “I’d like to have my own business at some point,” David shared.

As a part of my speech that day, I gave away a 30-minute coaching session to the people who signed up that day. David signed up immediately, and then showed up.

Interestingly though, he didn’t just show up to get a coaching session. He took most of his 30-minutes to help me understand what he learned from my speech. He also shared a story about the managers he’d had over the years that just, “didn’t get it.”

“Misti,” David said, “When I think about the jobs where I’ve asked for more money, I realize those are the ones where I didn’t feel appreciated. I’ve never asked for more money at a job where I felt like my boss really appreciated my effort.”

Turns out, research supports David’s epiphany. In Does Money Really Effect Motivation?, Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic says, “If we want an engaged workforce, money is clearly not the answer.”

So, if money is not the answer, what is?

I can hear you now, “Agh! I am not going to give constant praise just to keep them motivated.” Please don’t. In fact, I wrote an ebook about how praise kills enthusiasm.

So, what is it that your hustlers, and their teammates, are looking for? What will get, and keep them, focused on results?

Here are the top 3 strategies:

  1. Identify and communicate what success looks like, for you and them? Answer this, and you’ll know what to do to get them 100% committed to helping you reach your goals.
  2. Make it a habit to look for—and point out—specific behaviors, or results, that stand out. You will always find what you’re looking for—teach yourself to look for the right behaviors, and then reward them.
  3. There’s nothing quite like a challenge to get your employees focused and motivated. In fact, it’s the single biggest contributor to attrition of hustlers, who crave growth.


Rather than throw money at symptoms, why not throw it at opportunities to help them grow/learn/advance. The return on that investment is priceless!

Q: What’s the greatest compliment you’ve ever received?

P.S. If you got something useful from this post, please share it… it’s truly the best compliment you could ever give me.


Thanks to LN Lurie for producing this podcast


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