You Start To Negotiate Whilst In Diapers. So Let’s Close the Friggin’ Gap.

You already know how to negotiate. You’ve been doing it since you were in diapers. 


”Uh-uh, not me. I don’t negotiate for myself.” 
“I’ve never asked for a raise or anything like that…”
“If I knew how to, I wouldn’t be here reading this newsletter!” 

Before you object with any of the lines above, hear me out. 

Read: 9 Tips To Negotiate A Job Offer Like A Pro

Negotiation is simply a conversation with the intention of reaching agreement where everyone has the right to say no. 

Humor me. How old were you when you were first able to utter that dreaded word: No? 

Ever since the terrible twos, when you first learned to express your individual whims and needs (“No, playtime now! WAHHHH!”), you’ve wanted things and asked for them. 

Since then, you’ve been negotiating for years and years, non-stop. Yes, you. 

First with your parents and your siblings. Then with your fellow playground dwellers and your teachers and other rule-bearers. Later with your fellow commuters, your significant others, your local car salesperson, your real estate agent, your boss, your children. 

And how can I forget, even with the competing desires within you (“I want to eat again. Nah, I want to go back to bed. Scrap that, gotta stay focused so I can win the Nobel prize!”) 

Everyday you negotiate. You just call it something else, like getting along or getting your way. Tweet this

Read: Your Negotiation Outcomes Will Tank Until You Do These 5 Things

But fear kicks in and confidence plummets…

past salary

When it comes to negotiating for more pay, you forget the power of your choice. Tweet this

Blend this fear with equal parts structural inequities and gender norms that pressure women to take up as little space as possible with our bodies, our voices and our demands, and what you get is the stinking wage gap.

According to a recent study by AAUW, women in the U.S. are still making only about eighty percent of what men are paid. The gap hasn’t budged in a decade, and at this rate, women won’t reach pay equity until 2152. 

Read: Equal Education = Equal Pay? The Gender Wage Gap

Huh? What the F#&%!

Hey, are you going to accept that?

Say it with me: HELL to the NO.

It’s time to put fear aside and let anger fuel action. It’s time to call yourself what you are — an experienced negotiator. 

If we don’t take action, we will be cheating the future generations of women — our daughters and their daughters — of their chance at equal pay.

Read: Male Colleagues Earning More? How to initiate the pay rise conversation.

Still not convinced? 

Here are three ways you can close your wage gap: 

1.    Next time you’re asked to price your products and services, find out what men are charging and ask for the same. If you can’t find our men are making, add at minimum 20% on top of whichever number you arrive at. 
2.    Cultivate alternative options and contingency plans, like a competing offer, a profitable side hustle or a financial cushion. Spread your eggs in a number of baskets, so you never have your back against the wall in one rotten deal. 
3.    Get prepared with a strategic plan and custom script for your big discussion.

Let’s close the friggin’ wage gap. 

Originally posted on She Negotiates on October 5th 2016

Need help with your negotiations? Contact 3Plus now!

3Plus, Culture, Gender Balance, Negotiating salary and benefits: value your work
Jamie Lee
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Jamie is a Consultant at She Negotiates, a Toastmasters award-winning public speaker, and a pragmatic negotiation geek dedicated to helping you get bolder, braver and better paid. Through consulting, training and speaking, I help people catapult their careers to the next level with a gutsy ask. Born in South Korea and raised in the US, I’m a 1.5-generation immigrant American who got an early start on negotiation training with my personal Monday morning quarterback: My fierce, single working mother who ran a small business to support three daughters in a new country. She showed me that when women win, children, families and communities benefit. She also taught me to find strength in my voice, to be ambitious and to assert myself – even when I was the only different person in the room. Inspired by her moxie, I’m committed to bringing my whole self to the table – with both head and heart in the game. My process for helping client get what they want is as unique as my journey – from coming to America as a kid to working at multinational organizations as a college grad, then later working in finance and venture-backed startups. As a professional, I’ve negotiated on behalf of multi-million dollar enterprises and secured cost savings that directly impacted the bottom line. As a speaker, I’ve led workshops on how to evaluate equity compensation for employees. As a negotiation consultant, I’ve helped working women secure $20,000 in raises and more. I’ve also led negotiation workshops and events with Athena Center for Leadership, SIPA at Columbia University, Baystate Health Women's Empowerment Summit, Essence Digital, Bullish Conference and more

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