In preparation for an upcoming presentation, I did my usual over-the-top research on the latest numbers regarding the salary gender gap. I was surprised to find that, even though our unemployment continues to drop, the real money most often goes to men. Consider these stats:
Women earn $.78 to $.84 on the dollar for comparable roles performed by their male counterparts. (Full Article)
Although women out-earn men right after college, this margin disappears by the time women are in their mid-thirties. Some would say this is about the mommy track, but this picture is more complex and discouraging. (Full Article)
Narrowing the Pay Gap Starts with Salary Negotiation
One critical issue that should be addressed about the salary gender gap is salary negotiation. More statistics on the topic:
At a rate of almost 2 to 1, men automatically negotiate their salaries before accepting a job, but women, most often, accept the first stated offer automatically. This trend accelerates throughout women’s careers, since men consistently ask for raises more readily than women.
Finally, and this is the worst part, when women do negotiate their salaries or ask for a raise, negotiations often backfire and cause actual damage to their career advancement. Why? Women can be seen as pushy and are more likely to be penalized for it.
More to Come
I’m done ranting for now, and I am working on my presentation, “The Best Way to Negotiate Salary.” Check out my next blog, which will lay out best practices for women (and men) about asking for better salaries.