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It’s review time—dun dun dun—and you’re ready to count all the reasons (on two hands) that you deserve a raise. But before you go into the meeting, do yourself a favor and heed the advice of the ten super-successful career women below. Their insight could be the difference between securing a standard cost of living increase and majorly bumping up your bottom line. 

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salary women katia
Courtesy of Katia Beauchamp

Katia Beauchamp, Co-Founder and CEO of Birchbox

“I encourage people to practice the behavior of asking for more and set the tone that you think you’re valuable in a reasonable way. Before going into any conversation about salary negotiations, show that you’re paying attention to the larger strategy and vision of the company. When you share status updates with your boss, tying the results back to that strategy is a standout move at any age or level. I always take notice of people who go way beyond the scope of their job.”

salary women sallie
Courtesy of Sallie Krawcheck

Sallie Krawcheck, Founder of Ellevest and AUTHOR OF OWN IT: THE POWER OF WOMEN AT WORK

“If you’re told no (and it happens), have another ask. Maybe it’s a special assignment or a coding class you’d like the company to pay for. Maybe it’s an overseas project or a stint in the marketing department. Whatever it is, remember that 'no' is not 'no to anything and everything.' This is your opportunity to ask for something that can advance your skills—and likely lead to a raise (maybe even a bigger raise) down the road.”

salary women reshma
Courtesy of Reshma Saujani

Reshma Saujani, Founder and CEO of Girls Who Code

“I always tell women to make your ask and then shut up. I’ve found that women don’t like uncomfortable silences, so we ask for a salary increase or promotion and then keep talking—sometimes talking ourselves out of the thing we’ve just asked for. Make your ask confidently, justify succinctly if you need to and then stop talking. Wait for your manager or supervisor to reply and make the next move.”

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salary women alexa
Courtesy of Alexa Hirschfeld

Alexa Hirschfeld, Co-Founder of Paperless Post

“First, do your research. Find out what your market value is. What would your company need to pay someone else to replace you? Secondly, put yourself in the shoes of your employer. What do you bring to the role that no one else can? Answering these questions prepares you for the conversation and provides your boss with the tools they need to advocate on your behalf.”

salary women melissa
Courtesy of Melissa Ben-Ishay

Melissa Ben-Ishay, President and Chief Product Officer of Baked by Melissa

“Embody the person you want to be. If you don’t believe in that person, then who will? This is something I always remind myself. I know my value and it’s my responsibility to show people that. Remind yourself: You’re a rock star, and if you believe and embody it in everything you do, there is no convincing necessary.”

salary kiyo
Courtesy of Kiyo Taga-Witkin

Kiyo Taga-Witkin, Associate Vice President of Communications at Cartier North America

“Salary negotiations are like apartment or house hunting: You’re not always going to get your dream package and you may need to compromise. What’s been helpful for me is to create a short list ranking in order what’s most important. For instance: 1) Base 2) Bonus 3) Paid Time Off 4) Benefits 5) Stock Options 6) Flex Hours (work from home policy) 7) Perks (like free meals) 8) Work Life Balance 9) Position Title 10) Having a Seat at the Table (being able to directly interface with stakeholders and the CEO). This list is different for everyone depending on what you value most in a job, but it allows room to negotiate once you’ve proven your worth.”

salary women jami
Courtesy of Jami Curl

Jami Curl, Founder of Quin Candy

“Avoid comparisons. Even if the reason an employee is poking around about salary increases is because she heard that so-and-so on her team was given a raise, she shouldn’t use this as a point of negotiation. Comparisons can inform the information an employee compiles and provides, but they must not be the only reason she wants more money. Employers do understand the importance of teams, but they also understand the importance of the individuals making up those teams. An employee should allow her work to stand for itself and she shouldn’t turn the conversation into a dumping ground for what she feels about any of her coworkers.”

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salary women michelle
Courtesy of Michelle Lee

Michelle Lee, Editor-in-Chief of “Allure”

“Don’t stockpile all of your accomplishments for only one time of year. People tend to come armed with a list of their successes when they’re asking for a raise, but if you’ve planted the seeds periodically throughout the year, you won’t catch your boss by surprise. Also, in negotiations, focus on your work rather than on your personal financial situation. I’ve come across this too many times. Your boss may sympathize with your rent hike or student loans, but she shouldn’t feel strong-armed into letting those factors determine whether you get a raise or not.”

saalry katrina
Photo courtesy of Katrina Craigwell

Katrina Craigwell, Vice President of Global Marketing Innovation for GE Digital

"Salary negotiation time isn’t the only time to meet with your HR partners. Make sure you have an ongoing dialogue with them about your path and potential, where your company is headed, and how you’re performing along the way. Don’t hesitate to suggest new ways for your leadership to invest in you, along with the appropriate salary bumps. I’m a huge fan of third-party executive coaching. It’s a great resource to ask for that will accelerate your personal development and hone your leadership skills. It shows your commitment to growth and ultimately benefits your organization. A win-win for all."

salary women claire
Courtesy of Claire Wasserman

Claire Wasserman, Founder of Ladies Get Paid

“The best thing you can do is arm yourself with data. Gather intel on the market value of your contributions and track your accomplishments. Next, know your number. What’s your bottom line? If a company can’t match your ask, argue for other forms of compensation like flexibility and additional vacation days. Finally, practice your pitch. Women can be perceived as—and penalized for— seeming 'aggressive' when they negotiate. Combat this by framing your request as genuine concern for your company and your relationships with colleagues. No matter what, be the first to name your price and aim high (but not laughably high). Remember, they want you there.” 

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