Frustrated because your male colleagues are moving up and you are being left behind?

I would never ask for [a bonus]. If it wasn’t freely given, I wouldn’t ask for it. I might gripe about it at home, but that would be the extent of it.” Marcela, nuclear engineer

 “I tend to think people are pretty fair, so maybe I’m too trusting and expect that I’m getting what I deserve in that I work really hard.” Stephanie, administrative assistant

“I think it’s up to the people that you work for . . . to identify [superior work] and keep current with what’s in the industry.” Christine, investment banker

Can you relate to any of the above statements? Most women can – myself included. That was until I read Babcock and Laschever’s book, Women Don’t ask. The above quotes come directly from their findings

After extensive research with both men and women, the authors concluded that women fail to negotiate promotions, special assignments, corner offices and the like, because we have an inherent belief and an expectation that our good work will be recognized and rewarded.

It turns out that more often than not this is not the case.

Men, on the other hand, are much more likely to ask and receive what they want, be it a new assignment, a promotion or a raise. These researches argue that waiting to be recognized and rewarded for our hard work and talent often leaves our careers trailing that of men’s.

And Ladies, it’s not just those of us that are in the workforce. The inspiration for the book, Women don’t ask, came from Babcock’s observations that her male graduate students asked for things such as money for travel expenses to conferences, the opportunity to teach courses and even the possibility of receiving exemptions from course requirements (I must confess as a PhD student I never knew this was even possible)!!!

The female students rarely, if ever, asked for any of such things. As Babcock and Laschever’s research indicates, the repercussions are not limited to graduate school.

What opportunities are you missing out on because you are failing to ask for what you want?

To your success!

Dr. Gill