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Women don't ask - how to succeed at negotiating

It seems that we women have a problem negotiating...Apparently we're not as vocal or as demanding as men when it comes to asking...for a promotion, a raise, or even a 'golden handshake' (also read 'Get Fired like a Man').

According to a new book called 'Women don't ask - negotiating and the gender divide', women fall into one of three categories:

- "I don't knows" - women who unaware of opportunities and their rights
- "I don't asks" - women who think asking will jeopardize getting the job or promotion
- "I don't boasts" - women who feel it is impolite to spotlight their accomplishments

Most of us will recognize ourselves in one of these profiles. But that's not the point really. The question is: what are we going to do about it?

There are lessons to be learnt here:
- Know your market value before you negotiate a new job
- Ask while you still can. It is a well-known fact that you are in the strongest position to negotiate your pay-check, perks, etc BEFORE you sign on the dotted line. Once you're in, negotiation becomes even harder...
- Keep on knowing your market value...even after 2 or 3 or more years in a job. Experience and proven performance are worth money to companies. Know your evolved market value as well as your internal value!
- Sh*t happens. If you are retrenched, don't take it lying down. Don't take the first offer you are presented. Negotiate your severance package until you are happy with it too.

A well-known female executive puts it so well:
"We often take what we can get. We compromise instead of negotiating."

Compromise vs negotiating...that's a thought to ponder...

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