How do I negotiate a pay rise?

Anne Lytle, an expert in negotiations recommends the following points to negotiate a pay rise. The article was focussed on women, but holds valuable insights for both men and women.

There are so many important situations in women’s lives where negotiation skills are critical, ranging from negotiating salaries to negotiating home responsibilities, of which women currently do the lion’s share. Research shows three important differences in the way men and women negotiate:

1. Women don’t ask.
They expect things to be fair, and wait for good work to be noticed and rewarded. They don’t ask for raises, promotions, better jobs, recognition for good work, or for more help at home. Men are 8x more likely to negotiate a job offer than women. That means a woman who negotiates her salary will earn over $1 million more by the time she retires than a woman who accepts what she’s offered.
What can you do? Believe you deserve it. Practice asking for things. Learn negotiation skills to increase your confidence. Change your mindset… opportunities do not always knock, you need to create your own. Don’t think of negotiations as a competition… frame them as a way to create value for yourself and the other party.

2. Women set less ambitious goals, and give in faster.
Women are satisfied with and expect less, so they don’t seek more. Women are used to working without pay.
What can you do? Prepare, prepare, prepare. Use objective data in setting your goals and get input from others. A good trick is to pretend you are not negotiating for yourself, but are negotiating for someone else! Don’t make concessions immediately. Wait. Ask a question instead of giving in.

3. Women suffer a backlash when they are direct and assertive.
The same behaviour exhibited by women and men is perceived differently because of gender role expectations that are pervasive and unconscious. We call this the double bind. When men behave in a direct, assertive way, they are perceived as go-getters. Leaders. When women behave this way, they are aggressive and unlikable.
What can you do? A softer style can improve your chances for success. That doesn’t mean be concessionary. Be “relentlessly pleasant”. Frame your requests as things that will benefit the team, organisation or your client. Refer to joint goals. Illustrate you are a team player. Smile.