Sitting In Your Comfort Zone

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The vast majority of women don’t negotiate for themselves. In a seminal study it was found that 93% of women accept the first offer made to them. Not negotiating your salary is a sure-fire way to getting paid less than you’re worth and less than your (*cough… male… cough*) colleagues.

Enter: the gender pay gap.

AND… On top of the gender pay gap, there’s a related issue that has a huge effect on how much or how little you bring home every month. Even IF you do negotiate your salary, you may still end up with less than you should.

That is because as women, on average, we aim lower than men in negotiations. Another study than the one mentioned before found that women expect to be paid between 3 and 32% less for the same work as men, whilst they were equally confident about their credentials as the men were in the study. They just aimed lower.

In other words: WE don’t think our work is worth as much as a man’s work… And it’s well documented that lower expectations lead to lower outcomes. Ergo: if we go into the negotiation expecting to be paid less, we will most likely end up with less.

Hello old *friend*, the gender pay gap! 

And when you settle for less at the start of your role, over time it really adds up: the difference in lifetime earnings is staggering. As my somewhat (in)famous Bob and Bella calculation shows, for the average worker in the western world, not pro-actively negotiating your salary offers costs you between hundreds of thousands to millions of euros less over the course of your career.

Hundreds of thousands to millions. 

Ouch.

But it gets worse… 

There is another – perverse – way in which lower expectations influence your career.

When you extrapolate the lower salary expectations to lower expectations of what is possible for you or what you are capable of doing in general, the real picture emerges. By expecting less for yourself, you are keeping yourself small. You will aim for or accept that next position that is well inside your comfort zone; that is only a small step up from where you are today. Then, because you have to invest all your energy into that small, tiny-step-forward-role, this in turn delays your next step, which you could have taken long ago, if only you had dared.

This means you don’t get to live your purpose, you don’t get to do the work you’re meant to be doing.

So aim high, my friend. Expect a lot of yourself, and for yourself.

If you want help in figuring out what that amazing life and career may look like for you, and how you can achieve it, apply here. It’s what we specialise in at WIN.

Book a call with my team for a free coaching session and let’s see what we can do for you!