Study: even though women ask for raises, they don’t get them


Why do women get fewer raises and less compensation for the same jobs, when they’re equally skilled? Because they don’t ask for those raises, so the myth goes. Turns out that’s not the whole story, though. Women DO ask for raises as often, they just don’t get them.

And that’s still not the whole story, oh no — the whole story is even worse, and even more entrenched, than anyone suspected.

Women who initiated such conversations and changed jobs post MBA experienced slower compensation growth than the women who stayed put. For men, on the other hand, it paid off to change jobs and negotiate for higher salaries—they earned more than men who stayed did. And we saw that as both men’s and women’s careers progress, the gender gap in level and pay gets even wider.

Our findings run counter to media coverage of the so-called phenomenon that “women don’t ask.” Instead the problem may be, as some other research has shown, that people routinely take a tougher stance against women in negotiations than they take against men—for example quoting higher starting prices when trying to sell women cars or making less generous offers when dividing a sum of money. Catalyst research has shown a number of ways that talent-management systems can also be vulnerable to unintentional gender biases and stereotypes.

So there you have it. Definitive proof that “women don’t ask as often” is a myth, and that the gender gap does really exist despite equal ambition. Now can we kindly stop blaming the victims of this gender gap, and get on with fixing the imbalances inherent in the system?

Comments

  1. scenario says

    This is the value of science. A hypothesis that seem weak but potentially viable being blown out of the water by actual facts. Unfortunately sexism, like all ism’s, doesn’t respond to facts very well.

  2. ischemgeek says

    How long until some male supremist asshole says, “Ah, but it’s the women’s fault because they don’t ask in the right way. And why are we talking about women? Why don’t we talk about how correcting the imbalance is actually a sooper sekrit feminazi plot to make things biased against teh menz?!”

    I think I just threw up a little.

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