A recent study found that women are less likely to ask for higher salaries because when they do the social costs are far greater than when men ask for raises. You know the usual–I don’t want to work with an aggressive, ball-busting bitch.
The study first done by a professor, who noticed that women Ph.d candidates were less likely to be teaching classes than men, decided to inquire.
When Babcock took the complaint to her boss, she learned there was a very simple explanation: “The dean said each of the guys had come to him and said, ‘I want to teach a course,’ and none of the women had done that,” she said. “The female students had expected someone to send around an e-mail saying, ‘Who wants to teach?’ ” The incident prompted Babcock to start systematically studying gender differences when it comes to asking for pay raises, resources or promotions. And what she found was that men and women are indeed often different when it comes to opening negotiations.
These differences, Babcock and other researchers have concluded, may partially explain the persistent gender gap in salaries, as well as other disparities in how people rise to the top of organizations. Women working full time earn about 77 percent of the salaries of men working full time, Babcock said. That figure does not take differing professions and educational levels into account, but when those and other factors are controlled for, women who work full time and have never taken time off to have children earn about 11 percent less than men with equivalent education and experience.
The studies done were all really interesting as were the conclusions.
“What we found across all the studies is men were always less willing to work with a woman who had attempted to negotiate than with a woman who did not,” Bowles said. “They always preferred to work with a woman who stayed mum. But it made no difference to the men whether a guy had chosen to negotiate or not.”
They luckily moved past the tired and archaic, ‘women are genetically inferior’ bull, and looked at reasons outside of just blaming women for not being aggressive enough in demanding salaries. They found that there are clear social ramifications for women to ask for raises. It is dangerous for them to do so as they will hurt their reputation and potentially hurt their work environment.
Furthermore, I think that women are so used to working twice as hard as men, they may not always think they can get a raise. They have probably internalized the message that they are lucky they got the job in the first place. Naturally you can’t totally generalize, but in a lot of cases, it is not that women don’t believe they deserve it, or they are afraid of being perceived as a bitch, they just don’t believe they will actually get it.
The reality is, women do the majority of work, in non-profits, in education, in government jobs, in corporations, in health care and in universities and men make the majority of the money. Still. Today.
Maybe that is why women don’t ask for raises. When was the last time you asked for a raise? And I know damn well you deserve it.