Salary Negotiation: What's Holding You Back?

By Jen Straniero

As I scrolled through the list of events on OrgSync offered to students this past semester, one in particular caught my attention: Start Smart Salary Negotiation Workshop. I was curious, so decided to sign up. I wasn't sure what to expect, but hoped to at least come out of it with tips and tricks to make sure I could negotiate the best possible starting salary in my first job.

First, we discussed some important facts and concerns about the wage gap in the U.S. On average, full-time working women earn just 80 cents for every dollar a man earns, and women of color are most affected by the wage gap. For those of you that are skeptical that the wage gap doesn’t exist, I encourage you to check out research and statistics compiled by the American Association of University Women.

Regardless of how you feel about the wage gap, what is undisputable is that it is not just a women's issue- it is a family issue. Gender aside, don’t you want your partner to make what they deserve?

After showing us the state of the wage gap in the U.S., the facilitators showed us how to negotiate compensation plans. One of the primary reasons that women make less than men is because women are less likely to negotiate. By not trying to negotiate a better compensation plan, you could be leaving money on the table.

In this workshop, the facilitators did not teach me the magic words to use to get a higher salary. This is because there are no magic words. Instead, negotiation takes tons of preparation, like making a budget, researching median incomes for jobs in your field, and assessing your own skill-set.

I walked away from this event with a better understanding of the wage gap, and a new set of skills that I will use to negotiate the best possible compensation plan for me and my future employer. I encourage every student to sign up for this event. Using the skills from the Start Smart Salary Negotiation Workshop could be the reason you make the money you deserve in a couple of years...so what is holding you back from negotiation?

Are you interested in attending a Salary Negotiation Workshop? The next Start Smart Workshop is Wednesday, March 29, from 4:00 - 6:00 PM in KU 222. Please pre-register here >>

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