Salary Negotiation Tips for Working Women: Unlock Your Earning Potential

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Salary Negotiation Tips for Working Women: Unlock Your Earning Potential

Salary negotiations for working women are not easy, and frankly, they can be quite daunting - but they don’t need to be. We will show you how to confidently prepare for a salary negotiation.

According to a study women experience unique challenges when it comes to negotiating. Mainly due to the fact that we are often seen as unpopular when we are assertive. The same study suggests that the most effective negotiators are not just assertive, but also empathetic, flexible, socially intuitive, and ethical. Women can and do possess these negotiation skills. 
Women often underestimate the value of their professional views and have been conditioned to shy away from assertiveness in the workplace, which is essential for successful negotiation. We need to shift this mindset.

Here are some tips when it comes to asking your employer for a salary increase:


Know your worth


Do the research and find out what the market-related salary is for your position based on your experience. There are many online tools, like PayScale, that allow you to plug in your region, years of experience, and industry to get a pretty accurate salary range. Industry surveys are another great source of research. Make sure you include locations and company size; for instance, larger and more established companies in larger cities can afford to pay a higher salary compared to a smaller company based in the suburbs or smaller towns.

Top tip: Ensure your employer is aware of all your achievements and the value that you have added to the company.


Build your case


Demonstrate to your employer why you deserve a salary increase, not just want one. Make note of all your achievements, contributions, and impact within your organisation. Quantify this with numbers, metrics, and testimonials if possible. Highlight where you have taken on responsibilities, volunteered to help a colleague with a project, solved problems, and exceeded expectations. 

Top tip: Align your goals with those of the organisation and prepare a clear and concise presentation on what your request is, the rationale, and how it will benefit the organisation.


Choose the right time


If you are aware that the company is going through financial difficulty, then it is definitely not the time to be asking for an increase. The same goes for busy periods within the organisation. If you work at an Accounting firm, year-end is probably not the best time to sit down with your employer, as they are busy with audits and reports and will not have the time, or the focus to hear you out.

Avoid choosing an inconvenient time to have the talk. If your boss is packing up on a Friday afternoon, ready to head home, he may feel agitated by being delayed and won’t be able to properly process your request.

Top tip: Set up a convenient time and schedule the meeting in your employer's diary. That way, they are aware of the meeting and won’t be caught off-guard.


Be confident; we know you can be!


According to research women who tend to be more agreeable are paid less than women who are disagreeable. However, when women switch from being accommodating to being assertive, they come across as unreasonable and demanding. Women often have trouble being assertive, yet they need to be if they want to negotiate.

It's essential to know the difference between arrogance, which is an inflated sense of importance, and confidence, which is a recognition of one's own strengths and personality traits.

Present your proposal with confidence and professionalism. Explain how you will be able to add value to the business in the future. Hear what your employer has to say, and be ready to answer any questions they may have. A lack of confidence can also lead you to overexplain or apologise for your request, neither of which are successful negotiating strategies. Instead, simply and confidently present your salary proposal, along with your reasoning.  

Top tip: You are worthy of this; you are adding value to the organisation and you are a valued employee - show that in your confidence.


Be flexible and realistic


Negotiating a salary can be an ongoing process. Flexibility is key when realising your expectations and options. You may not get exactly what you have hoped for, so be flexible. You may also need to compromise with regard to timing, trade-offs and scope. You may get your increase, but your employer may need time to work it into the budget.

Top tip: Be willing to consider scenarios that will suit both of you; that way, you won’t be disappointed.


Have a backup plan


In addition to your salary, you may negotiate for additional benefits such as remote work days, or flexibility. You should be ready to respond with something other than money in addition to evaluating your salary. 

Being able to work remotely saves you petrol, as well as wear and tear on your car. You may also save on school transport and aftercare by being able to fetch your children early. Flexibility is a wonderful benefit, don’t be discouraged if your employer offers you this as a consolation, instead of a salary increase.

Top tip: You can always revisit the conversation regarding a salary increase in the future.


RecruitMyMom sees the value in hiring women, and we make sure our employers are aware of your value. We go out of our way to find employment solutions that work for you at a market-related salary. 

Ready to apply for the job of your dreams? Register on our award-winning recruitment site and fill out your detailed CV. When applying for positions, you will be given the opportunity to compose your perfect motivational cover letter for prospective employers.