I have a good friend and client named Jen who recently confessed to me her concerns regarding the fact that she didn’t think she would ever make the salary she wanted. She had read somewhere that women with her character traits tend to not make high salaries. This information was based on the results of a Myers-Briggs test and an article that suggested that people with her personality type, in particular, were amongst the lowest earners even if they had academically advanced careers. This post is for you, Jen! So, let’s talk about this. I have a lot to say on the subject, so let’s dive in.
First of all, a little side note for our friends who may not be familiar with Myers-Briggs: It’s a personality test that categorises you in a few different ways on a sliding scale. For example, you’re on a spectrum from introverted to extroverted. With these results, you’re given a series of letters that are meant to sum up your personality.
Here’s a more professional description brought to us by our mutual friend, Google:
“The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is an introspective self-report questionnaire designed to indicate psychological preferences in how people perceive the world and make decisions.”
From my assumption, Jen, your character traits are shared by several other humans in the world, and my first thought was to look for exceptions to the rule—Sheryl Sandberg, for example, the COO of Facebook, or Susan Cain, a bestselling author. Perhaps 90% of people that have taken the Myers-Briggs with your similar profile characteristics tend to earn less money, but not everybody—maybe not even 90%.
So, then I started asking myself why. It’s not that you don’t have the skills or the earning potential of a Type A person; you just have a different approach to things—very different. So, from this point of view, I’d like to share some insights.
Women, for the most part, still make less than men on average. Let’s face it—we still have a long ways to go when it comes to gender equality, and we’ll probably be set back now that Donald Trump has become the President. Women in general, especially your “type,” Jen, are less likely to ask for what they deserve for several reasons, which may include lack of confidence, not knowing how to approach the topic, being afraid to ask, fear of seeming greedy or “all about the money,” not wanting to face the answer or get into a difficult conversation, thinking that if you’re doing a good job you’ll be recognised, and you shouldn’t have to ask.
Well, this is your problem. If you’re just negotiating a new job offer, maybe your concern is that if you ask for a salary they might take the offer back, so you’re best to just accept what they give you and shut up, right? That’s why people make less money—because they don’t want to speak up. Do any of these reasons resonate with you? Have you at any point felt you should have asked for more, and you really, really should have gone for it, and you’re not sure why you didn’t?
That’s where I can help you. In order to do that, I’d like to propose a reframe on the topic. Often, we picture asking for a raise or negotiating a salary as a “fight”—a fight for what we deserve. I’d like to suggest that we not look at it as a fight but as a collaborative discussion. There are several things to consider here that can help make asking for what you deserve a lot easier.
#1 Know your worth & stand behind it.
There are specific ways that you can find out exactly how much you should be paid and why. So, enter this discussion with the information you need to respond calmly to any objections that they might bring up. People who know their worth are highly respected. Think about this: Whomever you’re having this conversation with has likely had to have this conversation, too, with their boss. If they were you, they would be doing the same thing—that’s one of the reasons they are going to respect you when you do it. So, naturally, they will respect anyone who has the guts to bring it up to them.
#2 Collaboration over combat
Asking for a raise or negotiating can be collaborative—not combative—and this is why. It should be well thought out, and it should be well practised for any debate where each participant respects the other. There are ways to do this that will both stump your hiring manager but also have them hold increased respect for you. Few people do it. Few people take the time to learn how to ask, how to respond and to learn the psychology behind what’s going on. It’s incredibly interesting!
Once you master these skills, you’ll have the tools in your toolbox to earn thousands more over the course of your lifetime. Most people leave thousands of dollars on the table because of the reasons I mentioned above! It’s mainly just because they don’t know how to ask in its simplest form. So, if you’re not making as much money as you believe that you should or you’d like to, consider why. Is it any of the reasons I mentioned in this post? It probably has nothing to do with your skills, your abilities or the fact that you’re an awesome human being. It just has to do with the fact that you’re afraid to ask. It has to do with the beliefs you have around money. A few thousand dollars to you means a lot. To the company you’re asking for the money from, it means nothing. It’s a drop in the bucket to them, so don’t be afraid. I promise it’s worth it not just for the money but for the personal growth in your self-esteem, your confidence, your dignity and for the respect you deserve.
I hope this helps completely shift your mindset around money and asking for a raise, Jen, and if you’re interested in learning even more about this, including the exact words you can use and how to approach the raise conversation comfortably and confidently, download my free salary-boosting guide. In it, I cover the scripts that I use with techniques that I use to get my own raises and how I applied them and how they worked for me. So, if you’re interested in getting the exact, word-for-word scripts that I use, go ahead and click the link below.
Feel free to give me a thumbs-up on the youtube video, of this post, I’d really appreciate it! Or of course, click the thumbs down if you didn’t like it. And, as always, I’d love to hear from you. Have you ever choked when you wanted to ask for what you really thought you deserved? What happened? What did you say? Share in the comments below. I’d love to hear your story on this.
If you have a question for me, email it on over to Natalie@AskNatalieFisher.com. I read all the questions. Or click on the “Ask Natalie” link on my website. You might just get a video just like this one. If you’d like to keep in touch, subscribe to the channel, or keep in touch here in my digital house, NatalieFisher.ca, where you can sign up for the exclusive list. You get to keep in touch and hear about more topics, like networking and interviewing—anything to do with your career and your road map. Plus today with this post, you can download the free Negotiation Script below:
Do you know a person who has left money on the table or is afraid to ask for what they deserve? I’d be ever so grateful if you shared this information with that person. And remember, the current way in which most of us go for our ideal jobs is not working—at least, not anymore. Most of us are making at least 20% less than what we could be if we only knew how to have the conversation. I know you can outsmart this system. I know you’ve got what it takes, and I’ve got you covered. I’ll see you next time. I can’t wait!
See you next time!