It's not greed, it's growth - why we need to stop feeling guilty about pay rises and promotions.
It's not greed, it's growth.
I went through university being told getting a job is hard. Be expected to work for free. And as a woman, it will be harder to progress, especially if children are involved.
And so I entered my career with low expectations and a determination to get paid. Yes paid, not paid a lot. Just simply to have an income after I invested over £20K getting a degree.
So a few months later when I landed my first paid graduate role, I was over the moon and felt like the luckiest girl on earth.
A year later when I was offered a pay rise it felt like I was on cloud 9. I must have hit the motherload. I’d update my friends on life, love and work, and instantly feel guilty about telling them I’d been given a pay rise when I knew they were still working for free or for minimum wage a year after graduating.
A year later when I decided to find a new role with a better salary, I felt guilty. I felt greedy.
But why? I had been working my damn ass off since starting my career. Of course I should move onto a higher role. Of course I deserved a pay rise.
Why shouldn't I?
The horrid truth is that women with degrees earn less on average than men who have A-level or lower levels of education. It’s not just the UK, women are still earning less than men in every single country in the world. It’s unfair and unjust. In 2018 we shouldn’t be fighting for the same upward trajectory that men have.
Whilst unfortunately a lot of it is still out of our hands, there are things we can do to reclaim the power of our progression.
Know your worth and ask for the pay rise
Men are more likely to ask for a pay rise and actively seek opportunities to progress if the pay rise isn’t available in their current role.
Take time to realise what impact you are making, how much you have progressed since your last pay rise and walk into Personal Development meetings with your head and standards high.
Acknowledge imposter Syndrome
Feeling inadequate and like you are “winging it” is a real thing. A lot of people suffer from Imposter Syndrome but it doesn’t need to hold you back. Acknowledging this inward negativity is holding you back is the first step to being able to overcome it.
Always look for opportunities
Sods law dictates that when you want to move jobs, nothing is available. Even when you aren’t desperate to change jobs, keeping your eyes open for what is available is always a good idea. Often the perfect ‘next step’in your career is simply being in the right place at the right time.
Keeping an eye out for your next job isn’t being ungrateful for the job you already have, it’s being savvy about what your next job could be.
6 years into my career, I’ve acknowledged my imposter syndrome, understood my worth and stop seeking the comfortable, the “good enough” salary and started to look for “more than enough”.
I realised that wanting more wasn’t greedy, it was understanding how far I had come and that I deserve to be rewarded for my growth.
And you do too.
Written by: Lou.
This article is written by a contributor, if you would like to contribute to Girls In Work please visit our Write for Us page and drop us an email. The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and do not represent Girls In Work.