4. Take the “no” graciously. To get back to the initial question: If your office is making budget cuts or citing the sequester or paying too much for its direct-mail program, there might be no room to spare in the budget. No matter how effective the argument, the answer about your raise may be “sorry, but no.”
Be gracious about it. Tell them you value working there and want to continue to be an asset. Ask when you can revisit the topic — budgets can change in as few as six months. And finally, see if there is something else you can get instead: perhaps it’s that senior legislative assistant title or a few more vacation days. Something tangible can go a long way toward feeling valued even without dollar signs attached.
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Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.