How one woman fought for her raise, and fought for her female colleagues too

 📸: Getty

📸: Getty

Last night I received an email that made me cry (I guess I'm doing a lot of that these days?). It was from one of our members who had the courage to not only stand up for herself at work, but for her female colleagues as well. She truly exemplifies what Ladies Get Paid is all about. She gave me permission to share her beautiful words with you, and no doubt it will inspire you as much as it did me.

Now go get paid (and get your friends paid too!).

x Claire
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Hi Team LGP, 

I recently had a performance review and wanted to ask for a raise, the first time since I started the job. I took my friend out for drinks to ask for advice because I was really scared to have this conversation. She told me about Ladies Get Paid and she role played with me for two hours, telling me tips she had learned from the webinars/trainings, until I had a great pitch prepared and could say it in the most confident way possible (read: without tearing up or having a panic attack).  

I made my pitch to my boss and she offered me a really cheap increase of $3,000 more a year and said with that increase, that I would become an exempt employee, losing my overtime protections. I told her that salary offer was below the minimum salary threshold for becoming an exempt employee in NY. She told me no, no it’s fine, the laws have changed, there are no minimums. 

I went home, watched the Ladies Get Paid webinar on how to negotiate your salary and made another case for myself on why I should get a higher merit based raise than what they offered. I also started researching NY labor laws to show them that the salary offered was below the legal threshold to lose overtime protections.

I posted about my situation in the LGP slack group and connected with a lawyer who practices labor rights law. She sent me a ton of articles and Department of Labor (DOL) memos that validated that my analysis of the law. 

My boss got back to me and said based on the case I made for myself for a merit based raise, I could get a little bit more of an increase. I presented the DOL memos and articles that the lawyer had sent me and showed my boss where in the law it stated that the salary offer was out of compliance with DOL regulations.

She showed them to the executive director, the legal director, and the finance director. A week later they all got back “with their tails between their legs” saying that I was right, that they were not aware of the new changes in the regulations and that the salary they offered me was below the threshold.

They offered me a higher number, the salary I originally asked for, while keeping my overtime protections for an additional $2,000-$3,000. I accepted and then pointed out that they were also out of regulation with two other women’s salaries. 

This has been a long stressful process to first deconstruct my inferiority complex, make a strong case for myself for a merit based raise, and then to raise the issue of compliance with DOL regulations. Ladies Get Paid has been with me every step of the way.

In the short time since I started this process, I’ve gone from being scared shitless to even think about asking for a raise (read: literally tearing up at the thought of having my performance review), to being able to fearlessly advocate for myself and others in front of the most powerful people in my company.

The platforms and tools you have built have made a huge difference to me, to the two other women in my company who will benefit from this process, and to all the other women I will share this knowledge with. 

Best, 
Katy

Claire Wasserman