March 20

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3 Easy Tips To Shrink The Gender Pay Gap And Stop Worrying About Money

#1 Reason Women Worry About Money

In a recent Glamor Magazine survey, over one-third of female respondents said the gender pay gap is the #1 money roadblock that keeps them from attaining their goals and living their dream life.  To honor Women's History Month, I'm sharing 3 empowering money tips to help you shrink the gender pay gap, grow your net worth and get on track to attain financial freedom.

Tip #1:  Know What You Are Worth

Yes, the gender pay gap is real.  It is the difference between what men and women make for the same work, performance and experience.  According to a study done by the US Department of Labor, women on average make 82 cents for every dollar men make.

Do Your Homework

Unfortunately, most professionals aren't transparent about their financial earnings, making it challenging to determine salary standards. One effective way to begin your research is through industry publications or entities that run salary surveys. Look for associations, journals, membership groups, or job boards specific to your industry and job description.  Many online recruiting tools, like Indeed.com (for example) provide salary ranges.  Location, experience level, and plenty of other factors influence the range. Your goal is to figure out what another version of you in your town is paid in your role.

Tip #2:  Toot Your Own Horn

When it comes to your salary, this is no time to be a shrinking violet.  Speak with your boss year-round about your goals and accomplishments.  Let your direct report know how enthusiastic and committed you are and your desire to grow so your worth is top of mind.

Tip #3:  Ask, Ask, Ask

60% of women admit they've never asked for a raise, or negotiated their salary. As the old saying goes, "don't ask, don't get".  Learning to ask is an important life skill that once mastered, can set you up for success.  

If your research shows you are underpaid, it's time to ask for a raise and close the gender pay gap.  Remember, negotiating for a salary increase is just a conversation. Show up prepared with facts, and check the emotion at the door.  Never approach the conversation from a position of need or contention.  Focus on your value.  Present facts on how you benefit your department (or company).  Point out ways you've solved problems, saved the department money, increased sales, streamlined systems, etc.  You get the picture.  

Use your research to point out the disparity between your salary and industry standards so your employer sees you've done your homework.  Avoid the temptation to arrive guns ablazing, threatening to quit (or worse).  Show poise, maturity and a positive attitude.

What To Do If You Get Turned Down

Ask for an explanation if your request is denied.  Is the company having a cash flow problem for example? Maybe there's something else your employer can offer to sweeten the pot, such as an improved work environment, more paid time off, tuition reimbursement, etc.  

It might be time to look for greener pastures if the gender pay gap is causing stress beyond your finances.  And knowing your worth should help you negotiate an equitable offer for your next position.



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