The terrific news: you’ve been offered the job. The high-anxiety news: now it’s time to talk money. Being able to negotiate for yourself when it comes to compensation (salary, additional income such as bonuses, etc., and benefits) is, for most of us, one of life’s ongoing challenges. The potential employer holds all the cards, right? Not according to authors Linda Babcock and Sara Laschever, who gained fame with their first book Women Don’t Ask: The High Cost of Avoiding Negotiation – and Positive Strategies for Change (Bantam Dell, 2007).
In Women Don’t Ask, Babcock and Laschever pointed out all the ways women unconsciously undermine themselves in all types of negotiations, but especially starting-salary negotiations. That well-known pay differential between men and women? Often, this is the place where it starts. Essentially, the authors found that the vast majority of women always accept an offered starting salary, while the vast majority of men successfully negotiate for a higher amount. Additionally, the authors’ research indicated that senior-level women who consistently negotiate their salary increases earn at least $1 million more during their careers than women who don’t. Talk about an incentive to improve your skills!
In their follow-up work, Ask for It: How Women Can Use the Power of Negotiation to Get What They Really Want, the authors focus not just on recognizing self-defeating patterns of negotiating behavior, but also on practical strategies and tactics for replacing those behaviors with specific, learnable alternatives. The chapters focus on various aspects of the negotiating process, grouped into four key concepts: everything is negotiable, lay the groundwork, get ready, and put it all together. (Note to self: rehearse, rehearse, rehearse.)
Think of Ask for It as the coaching and insider information you always knew you needed, but never knew how to ask for. And make sure your sisters, mom, daughters, nieces, girlfriends, and any guys you know who need to build up their negotiating muscles read it, too….
Ask for It: How Women Can Use the Power of Negotiation to Get What They Really Want, by Linda Babcock and Sara Laschever. Bantam, 2008. 324p. ISBN 9780553383751.
About the Author:
Acclaimed Career Coach, Kim Dority is a frequent presenter for Bryant & Stratton College Online. Dority is an information specialist, consultant, career coach, published author and adjunct professor at the University of Denver in Colorado. She has written extensively on career development for students and new graduates and is a frequent presenter, lecturer and panelist on career-related topics. Kim’s areas of expertise include professional branding, career transitions and career sustainability.