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Ask For A Raise? Most Women Hesitate

February 14, 2011
the face of a persistent gender pay gap, researchers and women's advocates are
focusing on one little-discussed part of the problem: Women simply don't ask
for more money.
are many reasons why, despite widespread gains in the workplace, women still
earn on average about 78 cents to a man's dollar. But the failure to negotiate
higher pay is crucial. Research shows men are four times more likely than women
to ask for a salary raise, and economist Linda Babcock
of Carnegie Mellon University says this has a snowball effect. Even a small pay
boost will mean bigger annual raises and possibly bigger bonuses and it will
carry over to a new employer, who is almost certain to ask: What was your
last salary?
tell my graduate students that by not negotiating their job at the beginning of
their career, they're leaving anywhere between $1 million and $1.5 million on
the table in lost earnings over their lifetime," Babcock says.
her figure doesn't even include company retirement contributions, which are
also based on a share of salary.
says women often just don't think of asking for more pay. If they do, they find
the very notion of haggling intimidating, even scary.
wait to be offered a salary increase," she says. "They wait to be
offered a promotion. They wait to be assigned the task or team or job that they
want. And those things typically don't happen very often."
fact, this hesitation might be for good reason. It turns out that when women do
negotiate, it can backfire.
Too Aggressive'
showed people videos of men and women asking for a raise, following the exact
same script. People liked the man's style and said, 'Yes, pay him more.' But
the woman?

I tell my graduate students that by not negotiating
their job at the beginning of their career, they're leaving anywhere between $1
million and $1.5 million on the table in lost earnings over their lifetime.

- Linda Babcock of CMU
found that to be way too aggressive," Babcock says. "She was
successful in getting the money, but people did not like her. They thought she
was too demanding. And this can have real consequences for a woman's
be clear, both men and women thought this way.
and Harvard researcher Hannah Riley Bowles wanted to find a way for women to
ask for more yet avoid this societal backlash. They tested various strategies
and found some that do work. Women can justify the request by saying their team
leader, for example, thought they should ask for a raise. Or they can convince
the boss their negotiating skills are good for the company. The trick, Babcock
says, is to conform to a feminine stereotype: appear friendly, warm and
concerned for others above yourself.
gotta say, that was very depressing!" she says with a laugh.
Gates also found herself depressed. She's a life coach in Santa Barbara,
Calif., and she helps women create all sorts of plans to advance themselves.
But then she finds they just can't — or won't — ask for what they want.
A year ago Gates teamed up with mediation expert Victoria Pynchon to teach a
course called She Negotiates. They teach
coaching sessions via teleconference, honing skills they say are useful well
beyond the office.
Is Golden
one recent role-play, a student named Deborah wants to ask her ex-husband for
an advance in child support.
I'm just, I'm wondering how you feel about all this," she says, and then
rambles on about a conversation the two had the week before, her insecurities
as a parent and a loved one with Alzheimer's.
Stop!" Pynchon cuts in. "Brilliant opening open-ended question,"
she tells Deborah. "And then you're uncomfortable and when you're
uncomfortable you talk."
admits as much. Pynchon advises her that "the most powerful negotiation
tool is silence."
business partner, Lisa Gates, says women get better with practice, so she gives
might have them go out and negotiate retail," she says. "Try to buy a
pair of shoes and say, 'Did I miss the sale on this? Is there a sale coming up?
I'd like to get the sale price on these shoes.'"

for Research & Outreach on Gender Equity in Society
Girl Scouts can carry out a series of 10
negotiations to earn a badge called Win-Win.
Olsen-Curtis had been at the same bartending job for four years when she signed
up for the negotiating course.
had honestly not really thought about asking for a raise before," she
learned to assess her skills based on their market value. She then worked up
the nerve and approached her boss, reminding him she was punctual, honest and
felt like I was pretty tough," she says. "Because he kept trying to
maneuver around it, talking about the economy, la la la, you know. I had to
keep bringing him back to, 'This is the value that I give you.'"
worked. Olsen-Curtis got a 25 percent raise.
Researcher Linda Babcock has decided
real change must start young. She's launched an effort to teach negotiating skills to girls
and came up with this new twist on an old tradition: Girl Scouts can now carry
out a series of 10 negotiations to earn a badge called

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G20 strikes
compromise on global imbalances
By Ralph Atkins and
Quentin Peel in Paris
Published: February
19 2011 18:45 | Last updated: February 20 2011 16:02
The world’s
leading finance ministers and central bankers overcame Chinese objections at
the weekend to strike a compromise deal meant as a first step towards tackling
global economic imbalances.
France secured
agreement at a Paris summit of the G20 group of countries on indicators that
would be monitored to avert future economic crises. But China successfully
blocked greater scrutiny of its massive foreign exchange reserves and the use
of exchange rates as an indicator.
Lagarde, French finance minister, said the negotiations had been “frank, at
times tense” but nevertheless amounted to a step forward towards greater global
co-ordination of economic and fiscal policies.
Separately the
meeting reacted to the unrest in the Middle East by agreeing to
“stand ready to support Egypt and Tunisia”. Under pressure from G20 members
including Saudi Arabia and China, however, the ministers stopped short of
stronger language supporting democracy.
Ms Lagarde said
the economic imbalance indicators would include domestic policies of all the
G20 members, including public sector debt and deficits and private savings
rates, as well as external imbalances “composed of the trade balance and net
investment income flows and transfers”.
The choice of
words, negotiated by senior officials throughout Friday night, was apparently
to avoid any reference to “current account” imbalances – another Chinese
objection. And instead of singling out exchange rates as a specific indicator,
the ministers agreed merely to “take due consideration of exchange rate,
fiscal, monetary and other policies.”
According to
officials closely involved in the negotiations, China was virtually isolated
from the beginning of the meeting. At one stage all reference to exchange rates
was removed from the text to reassure Beijing, but reinserted at the insistence
of countries including the US, Germany and the UK.
Ms Lagarde,
who chaired the meeting, said the indicators would be used “to test economic
policies and determine how good they are for all member states, and not only
for the domestic policy of a given country.”
Welcoming the
agreement, Tim Geithner, US Treasury secretary, said the world still needed to
“establish stronger norms for exchange rate policies”.
“There is
broad consensus that not just Europe, Japan and the US, but also the large
emerging economies need to allow their exchange rates to adjust in response to
market forces.”
Despite the
obvious compromises, Jean-Claude Trichet, European Central Bank president, said
the G20 indicators were “capturing what was needed to be effective … there is
no doubt what we are aiming at”.
deal paves the way for the next stage in the process, to draw up “indicative
guidelines” for each of the selected economic indicators, but not precise
targets, to warn of the re-emergence of severe imbalances between the G20
members. A deadline of April has been set for agreement on such “benchmarks”,
and the International Monetary Fund has been instructed to provide a G20-wide
assessment of policies by October.
threatened the weekend talks after Xie Xuren, China’s finance minister, on
Friday rejected the idea of monitoring real effective exchange
and foreign exchange reserves.
Schäuble, German finance minister, who was equally opposed to any precise
targets to limit the trade surpluses of export-led economies, played a key role
in persuading his Chinese counterpart to accept a compromise, according to
officials close to the talks. Canada and India co-chaired the working group
seeking to negotiate a deal.
Meanwhile, the
UK took comfort from a reference in the communiqué to addressing
“expeditiously” the issue of all systemically important banks – those
considered “too big too fail” – once a framework had been agreed for those with
a global reach. The UK government had feared the globally orientated City of
London would be put at a disadvantage.
On the Middle
East, the communiqué pledged responses to Egypt and Tunisia at the “appropriate
time,” designed to benefit “the whole population and the stabilisation of their

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family econ status & self-control SKILLS.
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19 October 2010 Last updated at 11:23 ET
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Q&A: France Roma expulsions
France is controversially deporting Romanian and
Bulgarian Roma (Gypsies) as part of a crackdown on illegal camps in the
The trigger was a clash in July between French Roma
and police in the town of Saint Aignan. France's deportations have been widely
criticised in the EU.

The government
says it will dismantle 300 illegal camps and squats
What prompted the
latest government action?
Roma in Europe
            Hewitt: Fierce
            EU gives France warning on Roma
            Delays bedevil EU help for Roma
            Roma face struggle in Romania
In July, dozens of French Roma armed with hatchets and
iron bars attacked a police station, hacked down trees and burned cars in the
small Loire Valley town of Saint Aignan.
The riot erupted after a gendarme shot and killed a
French Roma, 22-year-old Luigi Duquenet, who officials said had driven through
a police checkpoint, knocking over a policeman. Media reports suggested he had
been involved in a burglary earlier that day.
Duquenet's family dispute the police version of
events, saying he was scared of being stopped because he did not have a valid
driver's licence.
The night before, there were riots in Grenoble after
police shot an alleged armed robber during a shootout.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy called an emergency
ministerial meeting, at which it was decided that some 300 illegal camps and
squats would be dismantled within three months.
A statement from the president's office said the camps
were "sources of illegal trafficking, of profoundly shocking living
standards, of exploitation of children for begging, of prostitution and
Dozens of camps have since been shut down. Those found
to be living illegally in France are being sent home.
The move is part of a raft of new hardline security
measures recently announced by the government, which has struggled with low
approval ratings in the opinion polls.
Has this happened
In fact, France has closed down illegal Roma camps and
sent their inhabitants home for years. Last year 10,000 Roma were sent back to
Romania and Bulgaria, the government says.
What is the EU
doing about it?
EU Justice Commissioner Viviane Reding described the
deportations as a "disgrace" and the European Commission took a first
step towards legal action against France.
On 29 September the Commission told France that it had
two weeks to start implementing a 2004 EU
directive on freedom of movement
. France was warned that it
would face an official EU "infringement procedure" if it failed to do
so. The directive sets out rules for deportation cases.
On 19 October Ms Reding said she was satisfied that
France had responded "positively" to the Commission's official
request. The Commission decided not to pursue the infringement procedure.
The Commission refrained from opening a case against
France for alleged discrimination, instead demanding more proof to support
France's claim that it was not deliberately targeting Roma.
Wholesale action against an ethnic minority would
violate EU anti-discrimination laws, including the Charter of
Fundamental Rights
In a speech to the European Parliament in September Ms
Reding deplored the fact that a leaked official memo had contradicted
assurances given to her by France that the Roma were not being singled out.
"This is a situation I had thought Europe would
not have to witness again after the Second World War," she said.
Many MEPs also condemned France's deportations.
The Commission has set up a task force to examine how
EU funds earmarked for Roma are being spent. It is also checking to see whether
any other member states are violating EU rules in their treatment of Roma.
Has there been
criticism elsewhere?
Yes. The European Roma Rights Centre said Mr Sarkozy's
plan "reinforces discriminatory perceptions about Roma and travellers and
inflames public opinion against them".
Romanian President Traian Basescu said he understood
"the problems created by the Roma camps outside the French cities"
but he insisted on the "right of every European citizen to move freely in
the EU".
The UN's Committee on the Elimination of Racial
Discrimination sharply criticised France's crackdown and said racism and
xenophobia were undergoing a "significant resurgence".
The Vatican and other Church leaders have also voiced
Who are the Roma,
and how many Roma are there in France?
The Roma are a nomadic people whose ancestors are
thought to have left north-west India at the beginning of the 11th Century and
scattered across Europe.

See full list of
countries and Roma population figures

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