Salary Story: I Changed Career 3 Times Because Of Burnout

Illustrated by Daiana Ruiz.
In our series Salary Stories, women with long-term career experience open up about the most intimate details of their jobs: compensation. It’s an honest look at how real people navigate the complicated world of negotiating, raises, promotions and job loss, with the hope it will give young women more insight into how to advocate for themselves — and maybe take a few risks along the way.
Been in the workforce for at least five years and interested in contributing your salary story? Submit your information here. Published stories receive £100.
Age: 40
Location: Devon
Current industry and job title: Project manager in higher education
Current salary: £38,500
Number of years employed since school or university: 20
Starting salary: £16,000 in 2003
Biggest salary jump: £28,000 to £36,000
Biggest salary drop: £28,000 to £0
Biggest negotiation regret: I missed out on a salary increment award by starting a job seven days after the cut-off point. I wish I had negotiated to still be awarded that as it has left me one increment behind where I could have been by now, worth about £1,000 to £1,500 a year.
Best salary advice: Don't assume that a higher salary will mean you have to work harder! Also, don't assume that taking a salary drop will turn out to be a bad thing.