Prepare Your Thoughts

Before heading into a meeting to negotiate your salary, prepare your thoughts by writing down why you think you deserve a raise. Write down what you can do, but also what you will do. Knowing your worth is essential.

Know Your Value

Actions that merit raises are often measurable. It puts your superiors in a difficult position if you ask for a raise, but you’re not sure why you’re qualified for one. If you’ve been training more dental assistants than usual, seeing more patients, attending classes, have obtained new certifications, or have been at the clinic longer than most, then it is appropriate to ask for a raise. If you know the office couldn’t operate as smoothly without you based on measurable factors, it’s okay to ask for more compensation because you know our worth.

Be Realistic

Before you ask for a raise, do some research to see what the average salary for a dental assistant is in your state. You can see the average salary by visiting our page on dental assistant information in each state.

Ask for a Specific Number

If you leave how much your raise would amount to as an open ended question, it’s much easier for the dentist and team of supervisors to fill in the blanks with what they think you deserve as a raise. If you have a specific number in mind, whether it be what you feel you should be earning or what you need to be earning to make ends meet, keep that number in mind.

Ask for the Highest Amount

Negotiating a salary means what you ask for will either be given or negotiated down. It’s smart to start with a number higher than the specific number you have in mind so if it is negotiated down, it’ll be closer to what you’ve been wanting. Plus, if the higher number is given, then it’s a better raise than you would have asked for otherwise.

Stay Positive and Polite

It can be intimidating to ask for a raise, but don’t let that affect your emotions. Stay positive, confident, and polite throughout the process. If it helps you to practice in front of a mirror, practice a few days leading up to the meeting.