Diversity & Inclusion
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4 high-level tips for women looking to confidently negotiate their salary

Marketing pro Hannah Marks encourages open discussion around salary negotiation.

Hannah Marks offers salary negotiation tips at NET/WORK Philly 2020 workshop. (Photo by Sam Markowitz)

This editorial article is a part of Technical.ly's Gender Equity in Tech Month of our editorial calendar.

“Forget talking about our sex lives. The modern woman is talking about money.”

So goes a recent New York Times’ article entitled “I’ll Share My Salary Information if You Share Yours.” The main point? Women are rejecting that discussions about money are taboo.

And yet, for many people, they are.

At her NET/WORK Philly workshop, former Lyft marketing manager Hannah Marks asked the audience what their biggest salary negotiation fears are. Some attendees said they were fearful of rejection. Others mentioned their fear of coming off greedy or selfish.

Especially, “women are often fearful that negotiating with potential employers will put their offer in harm’s way,” Marks said. “An important step in overcoming this fear is to have open conversations about traditionally taboo topics such money, salary and benefits.”

Here are her best practices to help women throw their fear of salary negotiation away:

Be open.

Marks said the first step to negotiation confidence is getting comfortable talking about money. She suggested talking to peers about salaries and being honest about what you deserve.

(Sound too easy? Read the Times’ guide for starting that conversation.)

Be well educated.

No, this does not relate to where your degree is from — it’s about knowing your value and doing your research. Marks said to go into a negotiation situation armed with a fair value for the role. Educate yourself on what others in your field make to get an understanding of what you should be making. Marks recommended using sites like Glassdoor and LinkedIn to research salary ranges.

Be creative.

Base salary is only a starting point. There is more to negotiate. Marks suggested having a conversation about vacation time, flexibility and sick days. She has found the most luck pushing equity, especially in the tech space.

Be confident.

There are various things that can add value to your career, Marks said. Use skills you have learned in other areas of your life to go into a salary negotiation with confidence.

“Building the confidence around these topics does not only help with individual negotiations, but can ultimately lead to the communal success of women,” Marks said.

Series: Gender Equity in Tech Month 2020

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