Karren Brady’s career advice on asking for a raise in job that allows flexibility around childcare… – The Sun

APPRENTICE star and West Ham United vice-chair Karren Brady answers your careers questions and meets an inspirational CEO.
Here she gives a reader advice on how to request a raise in a salaried job that allows her a bit of flexibility around childcare.
Q) While my company gave us all a pay rise in June, I’ve been struggling to pay my bills.
I’m a single mum and I have a tight budget for food and energy, plus Christmas is coming up and I don’t want my two young daughters to miss out on presents.
I’m just an administrator and many people in my office earn a lot more than I do, though I know I’m not the only person struggling.
And I’m lucky to have a salaried job that allows me a bit of flexibility around childcare, so I don’t want to leave – but I also don’t want to get into debt.
Do you have any advice about asking my boss for a raise?
Kat, via email
A) The rising cost of living and soaring inflation are making life increasingly difficult for many people, so I understand why you are concerned, and I admire you wanting to find solutions without getting into debt.
You should arrange a meeting with your boss, but first make sure you are prepared. From a business perspective, consider why you deserve a raise.
Come up with examples of where you have over-delivered and any extra responsibilities you now have.
Are there also any tasks you could take on in order to justify a pay increase? While companies will want to do their best to support their employees, they will need to justify the spend from a financial perspective.
You should also check out the government’s Help For Households campaign to make sure you are getting what you are due for housing, childcare, energy and income support.
If you find you are becoming increasingly anxious, do reach out to Samaritans, who can offer advice and support for anyone feeling overwhelmed (Samaritans.org).
Kate Porter, 45, is the founder of gentle skincare brand Harborist. She lives in St Albans, Hertfordshire, with her visual effects supervisor husband Richard, 42, and their daughters, 10 and eight. 
I wake up at…
7.15am. I make packed lunches and breakfast – porridge for the kids and eggs for myself.
While Richard takes the girls to school, I have a shower, then my day starts at 8.30am.
A normal day involves…
As well as running the skincare business, I work as a visual effects artist. Monday to Friday, l focus on Harborist during my lunch break, communicating with my Staffordshire-based manufacturer, PR manager and stockists, and liaising with specialised skincare ingredient suppliers in Austria and Germany.
Then at weekends I do the accounts or writing blog posts and proposals. I’m a visual person and a problem solver, so getting my thoughts down in print doesn’t come naturally.
I need peace and quiet, so when the kids are at their Saturday drama club, I use that time to focus.
After five years in business, rather than knocking out rafts of new products, my priority is perfecting existing formulas to include ingredients that weren’t available initially.
I want to make the best products for sensitive skin, so at the moment I’m putting ceramides in our most popular moisturiser to help strengthen the skin barrier.
My final job at the end of every day is usually a dash to the delivery office to dispatch products to journalists.
Trinny Woodall used our Hyper-Gentle Balm-Gel Cleanser on a live post of her skincare routine, and that helped boost brand awareness. I could be better at social media myself – I mainly rely on word of mouth!
The best part of my job is…
My visual effects work provides financial stability, while the skincare business gives me a welcome creative outlet.
And the worst…
Not having enough time in the day. Work-life balance is a myth.
I wind down by…
I ensure I have fun with the kids, so I’ve introduced little anchors of weekly family time.
Every Friday, I buy cakes for after dinner, we play games after school and on Sunday evenings we watch a film together.
Relaxation comes in the form of a long bath with fancy lotions and potions – I enjoy one every night. Visit Harborist.co.uk.
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