Equal Pay Day is a day dedicated to raising awareness of the gender pay gap. The exact day differs year by year (Conflicting dates as to what the actual day is in Canada as it may be April 2 or April 9th).

In most cases, men have four months on most women in terms of earnings. Over the lifetime, men will make over $400,000 more than women due to the lack of equal pay.

One way that you can help combat this trend and help make the need for Equal Pay Day obsolete is to advocate for your own salary/raise.

Here are a few tips on negotiating salaries:

  1. Research what is market value for your experience, expertise and your role. Glassdoor and Payscale are great places to do this research.
  2. When asking for a raise, showcase your achievements and have concrete examples of how you supported reaching the organizational goals (so be very aware of what are the organization’s goals). Constantly ensure that your role is alignment with the organizational goals so that it:
    • Keeps you valuable to the company
    • Allows you to feel you are contributing
    • Shows value for your position
    • Allows you to use it as leverage.
  3. Be confident when asking. This is the most important piece. You need to believe your own worth. You need to have a strong voice that has conviction in it. You need to believe you deserve. Practice in the mirror what the conversation would be. Notice if you look away or continue to look at yourself as you ask for the raise. Does your body language showcase confidence or do you shy away and change your body position? Does your voice have the same tone, volume and power throughout the conversation or do you falter when you mention money?

Do this exercise multiple times and then journal what is your experience each time. This will allow you to uncover how you are showcasing your worth and deservability on a regular basis as well it allows you to be prepared for the conversation.

  1. Talk to a mentor or coach who can guide you through the conversation. It is always helpful to have a third party act as a soundboard, give pointers and a coach can take you through a role play.

Historically, we know women tend to negotiate less and accept what they are given – so it is time to negotiate once and do it well. Your voice and your confidence in your own abilities will help fix this disparity. Do you have any additional tips to add? Tell us about them in the comments.