Along the lines of my post the other day “Why I’ll Never Ask for a Raise,” today I decided I really don’t want an increase in job title ever again. While I’m sad that my earning potential is likely at its plateau for the rest of my working career, minus a few cost-of-living raises here and there, I’m fairly set on the reality that my abilities stop at this level.
What I’m not is a manager of a big team. I’m not someone who sets strategies and has other people do the work. I do the work. And that’s ok. It’s ok, because I feel in control of the output. And I don’t want to take credit for anyone else’s contributions. The best way I can help an organization is by getting shit done. My biggest challenge is not overcommitting, and focusing on adding value doing what I do best. Continue reading
At my last job, I negotiated like a boss coming into my role. I managed to be rewarded with a base salary of $190k–even though it made my hiring manager clearly feel uncomfortable–and I regretted that negotiation every day on the job, feeling like I couldn’t live up to that value. That job lasted less than two years.
In my current role, I was fortunate to have a hiring manager who knew me from a prior position, and I trusted he would get me the best / fair offer possible. Could I have pushed for a few thousand dollars more a year? Sure. But would leave a bad taste in everyone’s mouth. The comp package was quite attractive–base salary a lot less than I had been making, but I knew making less would me feel more comfortable in my position. With bonus and such, the comp would be about the same as my prior role — but bonus isn’t real until it happens. Continue reading
What are you worth? What is the dollar figure per hour that makes you cringe on either end of the spectrum? I was never taught to value myself, my time, or my ideas. Of course I was expected to make a living, but no one in my family expected me to be successful in the financial sense. And why should they? They all thought I was going to be a starving artist, or a designer eeking out a middle class life.
Then I entered a completely different life. And I had to teach myself what I’m worth. I still struggle with that question. Every time I make a mistake, I knock off another few thousand dollars on that number. If I successfully complete a project, I rarely mentally re-coup my losses. When it comes to salary figures, you can look at Glassdoor and Payscale to get a general idea of what people in your position, by title, are making annually, but that doesn’t really provide a fair picture of what you personally are worth.
The truth of the matter is you are worth what you can sell yourself for. You are a product, just like any product your company is selling. There is always a certain amount of money your company is willing to pay for the product of you, and a certain amount of discount they are hoping to get based on your insecurity. If you price yourself too low, however, they will start wondering what is wrong with you. So, you must have a pricing strategy in regards to yourself and your value. The trouble is, so many variables are hidden, and they sometimes change on a daily basis. Continue reading
I don’t have much time to write, but I needed to update to say — I just got a major promotion and am extremely excited about what that means all around. For the first time in my life, I have a full time gig that I love, that pays well, with people who I respect and admire, in an office that’s cute, and easy to get to, where I have the opportunity to make a difference, and grow, at least on a professional skills level (there really isn’t much room for me to grow on a “level” basis in an 8-person company), and…
For the first time in my life my “got the job” excitement isn’t fear about failure. It’s excitement about success. I think I might have got it right this time.
Negotiation for more money was a little awkward (when isn’t it?) but I got an extra $2k out of the deal. Not shabby. I’m going to try to put a lot of money away for retirement this year. And to save for grad school. If I can make it at least 2 years at this company, I can save quite a bit of money. I paid off my small credit card debt the other day, with my next paycheck I will pay my boyfriend back the $180 I owe him, and then my debts will be gone. Just need to get through this month (I have $74 in my bank account right now, eeks!)