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Survey: Women feel less comfortable than men bargaining for better pay, promotions

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Posted at 9:56 AM, Mar 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-18 11:56:24-04

We're seeing the impact of the pandemic on women's progress at work. The gender gap in requests for promotions and pay raises is widening.

Men say they're around 8% less comfortable asking for a raise now. Women are about 12% less comfortable, according to a new survey from job listing website Indeed.com.

It's a similar story when it comes to feeling comfortable asking for a promotion.

An economist with Indeed thinks the additional responsibilities women have been taking on at home during the pandemic are part of what's impacting this.

“Women may feel that, hey I’m not able to put in 100% at work and therefore I don't feel like I have been able to over perform, and so I don't feel comfortable asking my boss or manager for this pay raise or promotion,” said AnnElizabeth Konkel, an economist with the Indeed Hiring Lab.

Konkel says another potential factor is that women don't want to look ungrateful or difficult as their employer is dealing with keeping staff or budget issues.

Older women have been the least comfortable asking for a raise or promotion.

If you have been feeling this way, it's worth revisiting the idea for yourself and asking if now could be a good time or maybe a few months from now.

“Make that case and really convince yourself that you know you deserve this. You have been putting in the work, and so that you know that confidence shines through in that request and that you have you know definitive reasons to say I worked on this project, I put in these hours,” said Konkel.

It's important to advocate for yourself because if you don't, this can impact your lifetime earnings.

Indeed found one silver lining of the pandemic. They found the gap has narrowed between men and women feeling comfortable asking for more flexibility at work.

Younger women in particular have seen gains in feeling good about asking for flexibility on work location, hours and schedule.

Konkel advises having those conversations about keeping that flexibility with your boss now and build your case in a similar way to how you would when asking for a raise or promotion.