Dollar Bills, Y'All: 5 Resources for Getting Pro at Negotiating Your Pay
We all know (and curse) the national pay gap between men and women. In 2011, it was 23 percent according to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research. While this difference has historically been attributed to institutional sexism, a recent study by Andreas Liebbrandt of Monash University in Australia and John List of the University of Chicago has found that salary negotiation—or in women’s case, lack there of—plays a part as well.
Of course, a woman’s hesitancy to negotiate is still related to institutional sexism in the sense that girls are raised to deflect praise, put others before themselves, and avoid any behavior that could be construed as aggressive. But while it’s impossible to change a patriarchal office as a single person, negotiating is something every woman can learn to do better. Check this: Some great online resources to help you pick up your game.
1. Why women should negotiate: If you’re like me and negotiation is novel, scary territory, you might need a little more motivation to admit to yourself that you need to get better. Stanford University’s Margaret A. Neale will get you pissed off and rearing to go in her recent Forbes article “Why Women Must Ask.” According to Neal’s research, only 7 percent of women attempt to negotiate a new salary offer, compared to 57 percent of men. Of those men and women that did negotiate the average bump in salary was more than 7 percent. Women can effectively reduce that 7 percent difference just by attempting negotiation.
For further motivation, Neale urges women to look at salary differences as compounded. A $7,000 raise for a coworker who gains promotions at the same rate as you over the course of 35 years means you would have to work eight years more to retire with the same amount. Negotiate for your life, ladies!
2. Negotiation at your current gig: Attorney Victoria Pynchon brings 25 years of experience in commercial litigation to two articles in the Daily Muse to explain how to negotiate at the job you have now. The first piece outlines the steps you should take before you approach your superior for a raise (no, they don’t include bribery, blackmail, brown-nosing, or other things that start with 'b'). The second article provides an amazingly detailed script so you can learn not only how to broach a raise, but how to dodge all the excuses your boss will likely throw in your path like a conversational ninja.
3. New job, new salary: Harvard Business Review’s Amy Gallo discusses how to increase your starting salary without making things awkward with your soon-to-be boss. Besides advice, this article has realistic case studies and lots of sites you can visit to gather information about various organizations and what they pay for different positions.
4. Real Talk with Katie Couric, Sheryl Sandberg, and more: In the following segment from Katie titled “Why Women Lose at Negotiation and What We Can Do About It?” Couric and a panel of elite businesswomen discuss how to approach negotiation in a world of double standards for women. Although it’s easy to get depressed because they’re telling you to change your behavior, instead of society changing its BS reactions to “loud” or “angry” women, these women got where they are with the help of their pragmatism. It may not be what we want to hear, they know what they’re talking about. (Also: Sheryl. Sandberg’s. Shoes.)
5. Five ways to practice: Learnvest via Daily Muse fills you in on five things to cut your negotiation teeth—from your phone bill to your mattress—so you can get some practice before you take on the man.
Good luck. We're rooting for ya.