GET EMAIL UPDATES FROM POWERTOFLY
By signing up you accept the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy
BROWSE CATEGORIES
GET EMAIL UPDATES FROM POWERTOFLY
Career Advice

Salary Negotiation Tips For Women: 10 Expert Tactics

Why Asking Matters and How To Do It The Right Way

"How much do you want?" can feel like a trick question when you're negotiating salary.


The first time I was asked this question, I had no idea what to say. I just knew that what I'd been offered wasn't enough. Having relocated from the U.S. to Argentina just a month prior, I was still learning the market and was worried about having my offer rescinded if I asked for too much. Knowledge is power in a negotiation, and in my ignorance of local norms and rates, I found myself feeling powerless and frustrated.

The hiring manager seized on my silence and asked me another question: "What's the minimum you'd accept?" Not knowing how to stall for more time, I blurted out my actual minimum. He flashed a toothy grin and said, "Done." I knew then and there that I'd gone way too low - his smile said it all.

I broke two cardinal rules of negotiation that day:

1) Think about the number you want and ask for more

2) Know your value in the market

I went home kicking myself for flubbing the negotiation and not asking for what I really wanted/deserved.

Some research has shown that women are much less likely to negotiate salary than men; an oft-cited study of MBA grads from Carnegie Mellon showed that only 7% percent of women negotiated their initial salary offers as compared to 57% percent of men. Other more recent data has shown that women do now negotiate at the same rate as men. Either way, the reality remains that as women, we are often socialized to be agreeable (see point 2 below)... and negotiating feels like the opposite of people pleasing, so it can be tough to do. All the same, it's of vital importance that we keep having these conversations.

When we don't negotiate, what's holding us back?

  1. We (erroneously) believe that what we've been offered is what we deserve - Economist and negotiation expert Linda Babcock said it best, "Women tend to assume that they will be recognized and rewarded for working hard and doing a good job. Unlike men, they haven't been taught that they can ask for more."
  2. We've been socialized to be agreeable, and we face backlash when we aren't - As women, we're taught to go with the flow and please others. And for the first half of our lives -- in school and at home -- we're rewarded for this with good grades and encouraging words from our parents and teachers. But patting us on the back for being agreeable doesn't do us any favors once we enter the workplace, where the results-oriented culture means that if you don't speak up for yourself and make your achievements known, then no one else will. Unfortunately, when we do speak up for ourselves, we're often penalized for being too assertive.

Why is this a problem?

  1. Experts believe that women's reluctance to ask for more, and the double bind they face when they do, are major contributors to the persistence of the gender pay gap.
  2. Future salaries are largely dependent upon previous earnings, so what may only be a few thousand dollars annually when you're starting out quickly compounds with each raise, salary-based bonus, or job switch (when you're often asked how much you were making). Some experts estimate that women can lose as much as 1.5 million dollars over the course of their careers as a result of not asking.

Try these expert tactics to make sure you come out on top

Although gender stereotypes can contribute to our reluctance to negotiate, there's no reason to let them prevent us from going to the table.

At PowerToFly, we sat down with lawyer and negotiation expert Nicole Page to get the inside scoop on how women can gain the confidence to be their own advocates and come out on top of any negotiation. She's successfully helped hundreds of clients get better offers and was kind enough to share her wisdom.

Keep these tips handy so that the next time you're considering a job offer, you don't make the same mistakes I did.

How To Negotiate Your Salary - 10 Expert Tips

----

Hungry for even more negotiation skills? Check out our full interview with Nicole here, as well as our more recent chat and learn with another lawyer and negotiation pro, Anica John, where she addresses how you can answer the dreaded, "What are your salary expectations?" question.

popular

How These Companies Are Celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

According to a recent study, anti-Asian hate crimes have risen 150% since the pandemic started. But these acts of violence are not new — they are part of a much larger history of anti-Asian racism and violence in the U.S.

That makes celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month (which was named a month-long celebration in May by Congress in 1992 "to coincide with two important milestones in Asian/Pacific American history: the arrival in the United States of the first Japanese immigrants on May 7, 1843 and contributions of Chinese workers to the building of the transcontinental railroad, completed May 10, 1869") this year all the more important.

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less

5 Things All Product Managers Should Do for Their Engineers (And Vice Versa)

Tips from SeatGeek's Anuja Chavan

When Anuja Chaven turns on a fan in her house in Jersey City, she can't help but think about how every piece of it works.

"There are an extensive amount of things that have to go perfectly at the same time," says the former engineer (and current product manager at live event ticketing platform SeatGeek).

It was that interest in understanding how things actually worked that drove Anuja to study engineering—first electrical, during her undergrad in India, and then computer science, during her master's program in the U.S.

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less
Pluralsight

The Secrets to Balancing Work and Family Life

3 Pieces of Advice from Working Moms at Pluralsight

Being fully committed to work and family is a challenge that many working parents have to take on. It can be exhausting and thankless pursuing a fulfilling full-time career, while taking an active role as a parent. Achieving a healthy balance can help keep you motivated and productive at work, while allowing you to be fully present when you're home.

We recently chatted with working moms at technology skills platform, Pluralsight, about their best advice for striking that elusive work-life balance. Here were their key points:

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less
Plex

How to Make the Most of Being on a Growing Team: 3 Tips from Plex’s Adriana Bosinceanu

When the startup Adriana Bosinceanu was working for got acquired, things changed fast.

She went from being one of eight engineers on a small team building a streaming service to joining a company that was five times larger and had a much bigger scope.

That company was Plex, where Adriana has been working remotely as a software engineer for the last four and a half years.

As her team grew from two people to ten, Adriana decided to lean into the opportunity to grow; along the way, she found herself deepening her technical skills, her self-confidence, and her relationships. We sat down with Adriana to learn exactly how she did that, and to hear the tips she has for other engineers experiencing growth opportunities on their team.

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less
popular

What These Companies Are Doing to Celebrate Juneteenth 2021

*Updated on June 17th, 2021 to reflect Juneteenth officially being named a Federal Holiday in the U.S.*

Juneteenth has been celebrated by African-Americans since the late 1800s, but in recent years (particularly in response to global protests over police brutality and the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and other Black Americans), there has been a surge in interest in the day that celebrates freedom.

Before it became an official federal holiday, many businesses shifted toward marking June 19th as an annual company holiday, creating different initiatives around the holiday and offering employees opportunities to learn, reflect, and take action toward racial equality.

READ MORE AND DISCUSS Show less
© Rebelmouse 2020