Today on MYM360 – Are Women Responsible for the Gender Wage Gap? I had a rather heated discussion with a friend and (yes we are still friends) he argued that women were themselves responsible for the gender wage gap. He said that if women would negotiate their pay like men do the problem could be solved. And, that could be partially true but I think the problem is a lot deeper. However, I did have to admit that what he said did have some merit. In fact, there was a study done several years ago and I remember writing an article on it that spoke to that point especially for professional women. It seems that by not negotiating their pay for their first job they set off a pattern of being behind and they can never catch up because they are always a level lower and this has major consequences. If I remember correctly, this could result in the loss of up to $2 million over the course of their career. So that is a problem.
Why don’t women negotiate? Well, there are tons of reasons from not wanting to rock the boat to wanting or really needing the job and people and employers can often smell the desperation. It’s like falling in love with a car at a dealership. Once they know how much you love it, your negotiating power goes down. So what can you do? Well, start by doing your homework. Ask questions to lots of people and look online to see what comparable salaries are in your area. A good source for this is Glassdoor. They have tons of info, including salaries for many companies. And, then go in and ask for what you are really worth. You may not get everything you want but you may get more than they were going to initially offer. If you don’t ask, you won’t know and you certainly can’t get it.
Want more answers like this or do you have a burning question you would like answered? I am feverishly working on the Minding Your Money Answer Book. I have been taking some of your questions, plus some of the podcast episodes and I’m compiling them into a book with quick answers to some of your everyday financial questions. So if you have burning question, send it to me at email@example.com and your question could end up in the book.
Thanks so much for listening and as always remember that minding your money really is the path to a richer life!