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Tired of being underpaid?

Are you sick and tired of employers taking advantage of you?  You're not alone.  This is especially true for women, but a lot of us men aren't doing so well either.  Much of this article is addressed to women, but men—listen in.

In a recent workshop, a young woman asked why men tend to get paid more. I said, years ago, many thought that women who worked were taking jobs from (male) family breadwinners.  If a woman was hired at all, it was usually at a much lower rate because she "didn't really need the money."  Old attitudes die hard.

Further, being assertive in salary negotiations goes against many women's upbringing (some men's too). Women are generally taught to be "nice" and "avoid confrontation;" they fear being perceived as "pushy" or '' aggressive."

Many women fear being seen as  "pushy" or "aggessive"

One study suggests that employers tend to offer women and men the same money, but the men ask for more, while the women don't. Those who don't learn to play the game of negotiations well, suffer devastating financial loss in both the short and long term.Often, raises are given as a percentage of current earnings, so each year, those who don't initially negotiate well fall farther behind.One study said that accepting that first job for $5,000 less could cost a half a million dollars over the course of a career.

The impact on self-esteem, attitude, and future promotions can also be devastating. A client named Debbie was doing fantastic work.The boss leaned on her heavily to manage the difficult jobs, and she loved it.Then one day, she learned that a recently-hired man, who was neither as smart nor capable as she, was being paid $10,000 more.

Debbie told us, "That day, I said, 'That's it! I'm not doing anything extra!'" She became an average performer—and a prime candidate for a layoff.Fortunately, we started working with her on making a career move before her unenthusiastic work caught up with her.

It takes effort to overcome that reluctance to ask for what we're worth. But developing negotiation skills not only gets you more money, but more respect.
When we negotiate well, our work is often valued more.

Here's a plan for improving your negotiating.  


NOT SATISFIED WITH YOUR EARNINGS OR THE DIRECTION OF YOUR CAREER?  Call us today for a no-obligation conversation (847-673-0339)--or send us and email.


♦ Change your thinking about negotiating being "pushy" or "obnoxious." It's a game.  Learn to play it and make it pay off.  

♦ Realize that compensation is almost always negotiable, whether the economy is good or bad.  In bad times, you will generally not be able to get as much, but you can still move the compensation offer in your favor.  

♦ Research the market value of the position you want.  Visit salary web sites, see if your professional association has a salary survey, talk to peers, and look at the dollar figures on online ads.

♦ Carefully study Jack Chapman's book, "Negotiating Your Salary: How to Make $1,000 a Minute."  Come prepared with a strategy to respond to employer salary questions.  [Note:  Jack's individual salary coaching has helped many people add thousands to their pay, plus  bonuses and perks.  You may call him at 847 251 4727. ]

♦ Enlist the help of a friend, spouse, or coach to practice your responses and anchor them in your body so you don't wilt under fire.

It took some work for Debbie to overcome her reluctance to negotiate.  She was afraid that if she asked for more, the employer would think she was ungrateful and pull the offer. There's a recession going on, after all!

In the end, though, she did quite well in negotiating her next compensation package.  Debbie learned she could win the salary negotiations game.



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