I Negotiated A $12,000 Raise & Got More Work-Life Balance

illustrated by Abbey Lossing.
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.
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Previously, we talked to a 34-year-old marketing communications manager who became the highest paid manager at her company after learning to negotiate, a 33-year-old senior marketing specialist who regrets not having negotiated early in her career, a 29-year old regional manager in the wine and spirits industry who tripled her salary without changing companies.
Age: 29
Current Location: Minneapolis, MN
Current Industry & Title: Senior Associate Internal Communications
Starting Salary: $14 an hour ($29,120)
Current Salary: $82,000
Number Of Years Employed: 7
Biggest Salary Jump: $12,000 in 2018
Biggest Salary Drop: "My story is a little unconventional. I graduated college, worked until September of that year, took an internship in South Africa (which paid $0), and then came back and found a real adult job. So to answer the question, $14 an hour to $0 an hour."
Biggest Salary Negotiation Regret: "Giving a low salary range and then only negotiating $2,000 more than I was offered. I found out later that I was making $5,000 to $10,000 less than coworkers at the same level. Negotiate — you could spend years trying to make up where you should have started. I learned that the hard way and have not made that same mistake again.
Best Salary-Related Advice: "Be picky and know your worth. Do not devalue yourself. Women, specifically, have a lot of insecurity and self-doubt; We often tell this whole story to ourselves about why we don’t deserve things, but throughout my career I’ve realized that I bring a lot to any team, work well with others, and am independent. I think we all need to realize that we may have things to work on, but we also have a lot to offer. And you have to believe in yourself first before you can convince anyone else. "

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