Salary Expectations: When its time to have that conversation?

You are hired but did you get the salary you deserved? Our experts say African Americans typically don’t ask for what they want. Also are men better able to handle a salary negotiation than women? When should you quit because your boss won’t pay you what you’re worth? We’re talking about…..


Dr. Vanessa Weaver…………Career Advisor, Diversity Inclusion Expert &  CEO of Alignment Strategies

Shanele Thompson………Director of Human Resource with the Economic Policy Institute


Background on the gender pay gap:

  • On average: women are paid 7 percent of men’s wages (83 cents on the male dollar)
  • Gender pay gap exists in every wage percentile
    • In the 10th percentile: women make 92 cents on the male dollar
    • In the 95th percentile: women make 74 cents on the male dollar
  • Motherhood penalty
    • After giving birth, women are perceived to be less dedicated to their jobs, while men are perceived to be more dedicated to their jobs
  • Unions
    • Unionized work: women make 89 cents on the male dollar
    • Nonunionized work: women make 82 cents on the male dollar
  • Employer-provided benefits
    • Women are less likely to have employer-provided healthcare and fewer retirement resources than men

Background on the racial pay gap:

  • Black unemployment rate (8%) is almost twice as high as the white unemployment rate (4.3%)
  • Racial pay gap exists across education, experience, and industries
  • Widening vs. overall wage gap
    • College educated entrants – worst for widening pay gap
    • Black men with more work experience – overall pay gap
  • New-entrant (0 to 10 years of experience) wage gap: 7% disadvantage (2015)
    • Since 1979: 5 percentage point increase
  • Black-white wage gap among less educated workers
    • Less of a regional issue, but a greater national issue
  • Underlying inequalities
    • Lower rates of unionization among Black workers
      • Accounts for one-fourth to one-fifth of the 6 percent (among new-entrants) and 3.0 percent (among experienced men) growth of the widening wage gap
    • Educational inequalities
    • Mass incarceration and the prison-industrial complex

Background on the combined gender and race pay gap:

  • Women of color face a double pay penalty: the gender and racial pay penalty
  • Black women: make 2% less than white men (2015)
  • Latinas: paid 53 cents on the white non-Hispanic male dollar
    • Exists across education level and industries
      • A Latina with a graduate-level degree makes less than a college-educated white non-Hispanic male
    • Asian women: paid the least relative to their male counterpart
      • Asian and white men tend to make higher wages than Black and Latino men

Wage negotiation differentials (race and gender)

  • Racial bias (Volpone, S. Kaiser, C.):
    1. Based on the participant’s perception: Black Americans are less likely to negotiate wages than white Americans
    2. Based on the participant’s perception: participants expected less aggressive wage negotiations from Black job seekers
    3. Based on participant evaluator and job seeker interactions:
      • Black job seekers reported comparable negotiation (number of offers and counteroffers made) to their white counterparts
      • Evaluators reported Black job seekers negotiated more than white job seekers
      • Conclusion (for test 3): Evaluators perception that Black job seekers will negotiate less led to an overexaggerated perception of wage negotiations
        • This led to lower starting salaries for Black job seekers (within this survey)
      • Gender bias (Fractl research)
        • 8% of survey respondents have asked for a raise
          • Asian men and women are least likely to ask for a raise, followed by Black women
        • 1% of survey respondents are more likely to discuss a raise with someone of the same race or ethnicity
          • Latinx and Black workers are more likely to be more comfortable
        • More than one-third of female survey respondents:
          • Reported feeling like their race or gender played a role in pay raise denial

Perception of job qualifications when applying for jobs

  • According to Hewlett-Packard internal report:
    • Men will apply for a job if they only meet 60% of the job qualifications, while women will apply for a job only if they meet 100% of job qualifications
      • Harvard Business Review survey showed:
        • 41% of women stated: “I didn’t think they would hire me since I didn’t meet the qualifications, and I didn’t want to waste my time”
          • Respondents believed they needed the qualifications to get the job in the first place, not how well they could do the job
            • Gap in perception of the hiring process on the part of the job seeker