Grow A Pair Of Lady Balls And Get That Raise You Deserve

We’ve all heard it before: From James Brown to literally every article on finances and gender that you’ve ever read: this is a man’s world.  Even if it’s not entirely true that women make 77-cents to every dollar that men earn, it is true that in nearly every occupation and every state, women make less money than their male counterparts.  However, there is something that you can do about it: ask for a raise.

Easier said than done.  According to Linda Babcock, author of Women Don’t Ask, women attempt to negotiate their salaries 50% less than their male co-workers.  Suddenly the pay gap seems to make a lot more sense.

Now, we know what you’re thinking, and we get it. Asking for a raise can be scary, but you need to grow a pair of lady balls and do it, because anything boys can do, you can do better. While maybe that extra $50-$500 doesn’t mean that much to you today, think of how much it’ll mean to you in 35 years, when you’re starting to think about retirement.  While long-term financial planning isn’t really anybody’s strength in their 20s, a girl’s gotta grow up sometime.  Might as well be now.

Woman with pile of money

According to Margaret A. Neale, a professor at Stanford and co-director of the Stanford GSB Executive Program for Women Leaders, the top three mistakes women make when negotiating salaries are:

1. Not preparing

If you’re going to ask for a raise, you need to be prepared to name a figure and prove that your services are worth the price tag.

2. Lowballing yourself

It’s a given that your boss doesn’t want to pay you any more than he/she has to, so if you’re asking for a raise, you might as well go for it.

3. Being too worried about your reputation

While this is a fair concern, asking for more money isn’t a crime. You just have to figure out how to do it.

Now, here’s what you should do:

1. Get pumped

Expectation drives behavior, so if you really want to get this raise, you need to believe that you can do it. Even if the answer you get is a no, your boss will respect your confidence – and he/she won’t forget it.

2. Be prepared

Don’t think of salary negotiations as a you v. your boss situation and don’t think of it as selling yourself either – you’ve already been hired, your boss is already sold.  Instead, take a trip down memory lane and look back at all that you’ve accomplished at your job.  Include any goals that you had for yourself (and for the company) and how you’ve managed to not only achieve those goals, but exceed them.  Since your original salary was set with a certain expectation of what you would bring to the company, you need to prove to them that what you’ve been delivering exceeds your current pay grade.

3. Don’t guilt trip your employer

Even if your incentive for asking for a raise is because of financial difficulty, don’t bring it up.  You want your boss to give you the raise because you deserve it, not because you’re guilt tripping them.  Being guilt tripped is never fun, and it usually backfires anyway.

4. Timing is everything

Timing is key – try to ask after you’ve reached a big milestone or accomplishment and don’t ask during a time period when the company might be seeing low sales/is currently laying people off.  Just use your head.

5. Confidence

If you don’t really believe in what you’re saying, how the hell do you expect your boss to?  Oh, and while you’re at it, don’t forget to flash a smile or too.  A little smile can go a long way.

Asking for a raise can be hard, but your lady balls just have to be tougher. Remember: you got this. Get ready to make it rain.


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