When I created She Spends, I knew I wanted to make a space for women to feel encouraged to ask for more from their employers. Research shows that the wage gap is not only perpetuated by bosses who don’t want to pay their employees equally, but also by systemic problems that we need to do real work to change. To be sure, factors like motherhood, job choices, lack of paid family leave and few women in senior leadership perpetuate the gap. But there’s another issue at hand: Women are simply socialized not to ask for what they want at work.
This is holding us back. It’s not our fault — we have decades of problematic parenting, governance and socialization to blame for the reasons we don’t negotiate our wages. But to stop this from happening to us, and our daughters, we need to start now. We’ve created a comprehensive guide for you to use when it comes to salary negotiation at work. We know it works because we’ve had readers use the tips and come out ahead.
Take Veronica*, for example. She was considering applying for her “dream job,” but was concerned because she didn’t tick all the boxes on the application. After encouragement from our Facebook group, she applied. She received an offer from the company and was able to not only negotiate with them for 10% more money than she would have received had she accepted the offer on the spot, but she always was able to change her title to “specialist,” which is valuable in her field.
So how can you be like Veronica? Start with step one, research. Think of things you can ask for beyond money. Then, prepare by practicing in front of your mirror. Pop the question after that. If you’re a freelancer, you can also negotiate. We have a guide on how to do that. And if you have multiple job offers, there are ways you can leverage each to win out. If your potential employer offers stock options, here are a few things you need to know. And, of course, you can take the skills you learn in salary negotiations to other parts of your life. Here’s how to do it.
If you’ve used one of our guides to ask for more at work, we want to know. Drop us a line on social media, or shoot us an email. Happy negotiating!
*name changed for privacy
- Alicia McElhaney / She Spends Issue #47