About a two months ago a co-worker and I caught our superior embezzling money from the company. After consideration, we approached our boss and told him the whole story.

Our superior quit immediately. Since he left, his responsibilities fell on my co-worker and myself. We now do his job as well as our own.

We work in the export industry, and November - March is our busiest time of the year, where our monthly turnover gets to about $1.5m.

Myself and my co-worker now do all the work (except for the marketing manager who sells the products); we procure, do admin, financing, logistics, etc.

When payday came we were quite excited, thinking we would get a nice raise with all the extra workload. To our surprise we got a $100 raise.

Meanwhile, our superior who quit came in about four times to tie up a few loose ends. At the end of this month where my co-worker and I got a menial salary, our superior still received a salary - and not just pay for the 4 times he came in, but for the whole month.

We feel that as we have taken up additional responsibilities, we are deserving of a large pay rise than we were given. How do we approach our manager about this?

  • 35
    Your boss got caught embezzeling and they still let him come in several more times and paid him for the month? I would guess he was not the only person involved in the embezzling. Usually when someone is accused of a crime, they are not allowed in the building again and all computer accesses are cut off. That they paid him is a very bad sign. I would get out of this place as fast as humanly possible. I suspect you are too honest for this place.
    – HLGEM
    Commented Nov 25, 2013 at 15:58
  • Welcome to the "real-world" post 2009. Companies haven been laying off people and rather than hiring replacements the remaining people get to do the other people's work in addition to their own. Many people are also rewarded for taking on this extra workload by getting salary reductions. From the companies point of view, at least the remaining people still have a job. Did either you are your coworker get a promotion? If not, then why would you expect to be paid more? If you want more pay then ask for a promotion to your previous supervisor's position.
    – Dunk
    Commented Nov 26, 2013 at 17:10
  • 2
    @user1068446 - Good editing. The main question is still here, but the way it's worded is much more objective. Hence, I've reopened the post to allow answers backed with facts, references, and experiences to back up claims.
    – jmort253
    Commented Nov 29, 2013 at 20:45
  • How much was your previous superior paid compared to your wages? Was that payday for a month, fortnight or week? We can't tell if that $100 represents a significant bonus or is a trivial slap in the face.
    – Andy Dent
    Commented Aug 28, 2014 at 3:34

4 Answers 4


How you approach your manager:

  1. Walk into his/her office.
  2. Close the door.
  3. Sit down and state that you'd like a raise.

Yes, it's really that simple. A lot of people have issues speaking with their manager about money. However, it really isn't a big deal. Tell them you want a raise and how much you think you are worth. There are 3 possible responses: They give it to you; they say no; they fire you.

The last one is actually the least likely scenario especially if you have a good rapport with the company. If you are on shaky ground, e.g. boss isn't happy with your performance, then don't ask.

  • I like this approach the best and have used it myself but only when I have got to the point where I am prepared to quit anyway. Commented Dec 14, 2013 at 23:05
  • 5
    One thing I would add is that if asked "why?", saying that you are over-worked and under-paid is subjective. Virtually everybody thinks they are over-worked and under-paid. It's biased. You should still ask, but be prepared to back it up instead of insisting you deserve more.
    – Brandon
    Commented Feb 23, 2014 at 19:03

I think the company is being fair and reasonable by paying you the additional $100 for completing the additonal tasks. There is a significant difference between:

  • Being responsible for the work (simply: doing it); and
  • Being accountable for the work (simply: making sure it's done).

As these are not your actual duties you cannot be held accountable for them not being completed, unless of course this has been formalised which would be your opportunity to raise your concern with the amount of additional salary offered. A salary is renumeration for both responsibility and accountability

If you feel that you were capable and competent to take over the manager's role you could start acting up into this role informally and then if you are successful in carrying some of these tasks then approach the employer about taking over the role on a formal (either temporary or permannent basis).

Put the issue if your Manager being paid for the month he was leaving aside. That's his relationship with his employer and there will be reason's why he served out a notice period that you may not be privy to.


I think that to get a raise you need to prove that you can do this person's work well for over two months, you got some kind of a promotion, which is prove of faith in your abilities.

Prove that you can do this job well in the long run, I would wait at least 6 months, and then approach your boss to discuss a possible raise or a different title.

It is possible that the company is looking for a replacement, and you two are doing these tasks temporarily.


In general salaries are not based on your responsibilities or the work you do, they are based on the alternatives the business has. If the business can replace you with someone else for the same or lower salary (including the training time), then it will and you will have a hard time demanding a larger salary. Using the responsibility argument will fail 9 times out of ten.

If, however, you can make the case that either you go and take another job that pays close to what you want, then the business will have much less room to negotiate with you and you will likely get the higher wage.

So, look around and get a couple other offers if possible. Use the fact that you are now doing the superior's job as credibility you are ready for the next pay grade.


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