Women and Pay Negotiations

This is a rerun with some new stuff at the end that is so worth your time.

So there was this reddit thread going around: I work for a large multinational tech company, I regularly hire woman for 65% to 75% of what males make. I am sick of it, here is why it happens, and how you can avoid it.

Obvious solution! Women just need to negotiate for themselves! Oh my god, Ladies, why did we never think open our fucking mouths about this before?! I’m so glad this guy is here to tell us this.

Except, oh wait, nothing happens in a vacuum.

I didn’t have the bandwidth to deal with that and the response I’d have to compose. So, thanks to The Atlantic for covering that for me.

Their study… found that women’s reluctance [to negotiate] was based on an entirely reasonable and accurate view of how they were likely to be treated if they did… “What we found across all the studies is men were always less willing to work with a woman who had attempted to negotiate than with a woman who did not,” Bowles said. “They always preferred to work with a woman who stayed mum. But it made no difference to the men whether a guy had chosen to negotiate or not.”

Emphasis mine. Also:

When I was in business school, I learned about a case that had been run experimentally. I may hash some of the details, but the gist is that half the classes that used it read about “John” facing a tough management problem, while the other half read about “Jane” facing the same problem. No detail other than the names had been changed.

But what a difference a name makes! “John” was a strong, thoughtful leader making tough choices about what was best for his group. “Jane” was a headstrong bitch who was wildly overstepping her authority and generally making a mess of things.

No woman is unaware of these dynamics.

Remember how I said there’s new stuff. Radtacular reader Jaymie Strecker has an epicly long takedown totally worth all the time you might take to read it.

“By neglecting to negotiate her starting salary for her first job, a woman may sacrifice over half a million dollars in lost earnings by the end of her career.” — tagline for Women Don’t Ask

Where does the number “half a million dollars” come from? Did someone conduct a survey and find out that women who negotiate their starting salary end up making half a million dollars more than women who don’t?

Nope. The number comes from a thought experiment. In other words, the authors just made it up.

I thought it was bad, but sheesh. Seriously, go read.

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