Speak Up, Negotiate, and Earn What You’re Worth! This is not the time to stay quiet even if you identify as an introvert. If you are an introverted woman in leadership, you run the risk of earning less than your more expressive peers. The good news is that you can prepare for this and not let it happen to you! So, what’s different about Introvert Salary Negotiation? The same principles apply, but it’s time to use your super-powers of preparation, research, and thoughtful intentional communication.
Let’s talk about how.
What comes to mind when you read the word “negotiation”? How do you feel? How about the phrase, “negotiating your salary”? Does it make your shoulders rise or have you breaking out in a cold sweat?
It doesn’t have to be that way. Negotiating can be an empowering experience, not one that sends you seeking solitude and chocolate. These feelings of stress occur when we feel anxious or powerless—neither of which are a prerequisite to salary negotiation.
Author Alice Walker writes, “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.”
You have power. It’s that simple. Accessing that power comes down to effectively communicating what you want. Maybe you find it easier to communicate what you want in your personal life. If so, you can develop and apply those skills to your workplace.
If you find negotiating in your personal relationships as stressful as asking for what you want in business then you can only improve from here. Learning to negotiate in the workplace will help not only your career, but it will improve the rest of your life as well.
And that’s the goal—to be a confident woman who is honest with herself about what she wants and empowered enough to ask for it. Honesty and authenticity with yourself and others will help you feel more connected, unified, and engaged. There will be less of a gap between the way you envision your life, and the way it is today.
The following three introvert salary negotiation tips will help you prepare effectively:
1. Know your worth. There are two aspects to this. The first part is knowing the value you bring to your company via your experience and accomplishments. Can you articulate this succinctly in a way that outlines your greatest accomplishments and abilities?
If not, here’s a strategy. Keep an ongoing log of your accomplishments. Write them in a notebook, type them into a growing Word document, or use an app on your phone. If the concrete evidence of the value you bring in the workplace is constantly on the tip of your tongue or at your fingertips it is more likely you’ll be able to communicate it to your boss when it’s time to do so.
Self-advocacy is as simple as believing in yourself and communicating with others in a way that reflects this. Your belief in yourself will rub off on others and they will believe in you too. A list of concrete examples showing results can streamline this process and make it so much easier for you.
The second aspect of knowing your worth is to know what your salary should be in the context of your industry and location. Do your homework through online research to determine internal and external salaries. Checking out sites like glassdoor.com and salary.com is a great place to start.
Also, get involved with social networking and optimize your LinkedIn account. Reach out to a few recruiters and build relationships. Share your career goals and ask for insights into market trends. Decide on the salary range and or compensation package you are seeking and document it for yourself knowing that you will be targeting this figure.
2. Communicate your requests clearly. You don’t have to be a professional orator or expert persuader to ask for what you want and get it. First of all, the very act of asking increases your chances of success. While there is always a possibility of hearing “no”, there is also a possibility of hearing “yes.” Remember, every request you don’t make is an automatic “no,” so you might as well ask. This is definitely the time to speak up.
When you make your request, do your best to project energy, enthusiasm, and confidence. Not feeling very confident? It doesn’t matter. Faking confidence can work just as well and it will also make you feel more confident over time. You may not be able to control how you feel in the moment, but you can intentionally make strong eye contact, exhibit empowered body language, and listen actively and openly.
Another strategy is to take your boss’s perspective into consideration and then make your request within that context. If you have a good idea of where he or she is coming from before you make the request, you’ll be better poised to propose a mutually beneficial collaboration as well as specific ways to measure your success against key objectives.
3. Be strategic about your timing. Is this a new position with a new company? This is the best time for negotiation. Do your homework and go for it! If you are negotiating ‘in place’ for an increase or a promotion, be aware of the current climate in your organization. If there is a budget or headcount freeze you may have to wait on asking for a promotion or pay increase, but there are plenty of strategic things you can do in the meantime. Talk to your network about your career goals. Maximize your resources in your current position. Figure out exactly who to talk to and what you’ll say so that when the right opportunity presents itself you’ll be more prepared for it.
Whether the timing is right for you at the present moment or not, here is a short exercise to help you prepare. Having a plan that you feel good about and knowing it inside and out will fuel your confidence and make it easier to take action. Your mindset is key.
Fill in the blanks on the following statements and get started on planning for your next negotiation:
The negotiation I’m preparing for is __________________.
My desired outcome includes __________________.
The targeted date for this outcome is __________________.
The steps I’ll take in the meantime are __________________.
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