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Ladies, Here’s the Key to Not Feeling Guilty About Negotiating a Raise

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Negotiating a raise is no easy feat, especially for women who are crippled by the stigma that negotiating makes them greedy, bossy, or ungrateful. Read on to learn how to reverse those feelings of guilt and turn them into the fuel you need to get the salary you've rightfully earned and deserve.

Negotiating a raise is no easy feat, especially for women who are crippled by the stigma that negotiating makes them greedy, bossy, or ungrateful. Read on to learn how to reverse those feelings of guilt and turn them into the fuel you need to get the salary you’ve rightfully earned and deserve.

How to negotiate your salary

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Unfortunately, women simply aren’t as comfortable as men negotiating their salaries and even go so far as to avoid money talks altogether. The fear of being perceived as aggressive is one of the reasons we tend to veer away from discussing money matters, especially when it comes to compensation. However, the problem still exists: If we are too afraid to negotiate equal pay for equal work and men aren’t, then how the heck is the gender wage gap going to close or even improve?

Do You Know What You're Worth?

That is not to say that women are the reason for the gender imbalances that exist today, but it is fair to point out that, if we aren’t asking for equal pay, then how do we expect to get equal pay? A big part of the problem lies in the negative association women have with negotiating, and they end up psyching themselves out before they even stepping into the ring. So, then, what’s the key to eradicating those nasty feelings of guilt that discourage far too many women from negotiating a fair salary?

The key is for women to make it a win-win situation by reframing their perception of negotiating with their employer “from a battle to a problem-solving collaboration,” says Harvard Business Review. If you feel as though you are contributing to the greater good of the company and you have proof to back up your claims, then you’re more likely to see the negotiation as a fair game, rather than a money game where you’re asking for more money.

1. Respect Yourself: You’ve worked hard to get where you’re at, so why cheat yourself out of what you’ve rightfully earned?

2. The Proof Is in the Pudding: Gather up all the tangible, quantifiable proof that your contributions have benefited the company in some way, shape, or form. 

3. You’ll Never Know Until You Ask: If you’re not asking for a raise, how do you expect to get one?

4. Know Your Worth: Before stepping into your meeting, find out what salary range is comparable for your skills and experience. (You can figure that information out, here).

5. Don’t Give Up or Settle: Negotiating isn’t easy, despite what anyone says. Therefore, whatever you do, don’t give up when the going gets tough. Have all your ducks in a row so that you can enter your negotiation with confidence and with your eye on the prize.

If you’re looking for more resources and tools on negotiating tactics, then refer to PayScale’s Salary Negotiation Guide, or consider this post and this post to better prepare you for game day.

Tell Us What You Think

Are you a woman who has successfully negotiated a raise recently? If so, what words of advice do you have for other working women looking to do the same? Share your tips with our community on Twitter or in the comments section below.

Leah Arnold-Smeets
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Judy Anne Cavey
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Judy Anne Cavey

I simply don’t understand where women got the idea being “aggressive” is something negative, or that negotiating a raise is perceived as “bossy, ungrateful or greedy”. Are male coworkers perceived the same way? Of course not! So we have to take a hard look at where these perceptions actually come from and why. Women are told many wrong, harmful, degrading things by society, family, friends and males throughout their lives. Just take a look at comments made online when the topic has to do with women. The key is not believing those things, doing our best to squelch them so… Read more »

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