I have a message for women. If you want more money, ask for it.
One of the biggest reasons women make $.78 for every one dollar that a man makes is because they simply don't ask for the money. They don't ask for the opportunities. They don't ask for the assignments.
As demonstrated in Katty Kay and Claire Shipman’s book, The Confidence Code, women lack the confidence to step forward and ask for opportunities because they believe they have to be 100% prepared. They also do want to risk being turned down. That's not what men do. They are willing to take the risk and risk failure to move forward. Women need to learn to take these same risks.
Think about the money you are leaving on the table because of that fear. Add that up over years and your entire career. What is the impact on your retirement plan? It' significant! It could mean the difference between doing something you love later in life versus doing something you have to.
No doubt many women are motivated by adding value and doing work they love versus money. That’s all good. But the next time an opportunity presents itself, ask yourself, “What about that work would I enjoy?" Then make a list of all of the reasons why you can be successful in that position. If you are still compelled to make a list of the reasons why you might not be successful, follow that with writing down how you will deal with the gaps you fear. Who and what will you leverage to get the knowledge you feel you lack. Focus on creating a plan for success, not failure!
If you want to learn more about how you can accelerate your career, read about the 10 Rules for Women Who Want to Lead in Chapter 11 of my book, Money on the Table, How to Increase Profits Through Gender-Balanced Leadership, available here.