Leading Meeting Professionals

Professional Convention Management Association

October 16 2015

The Career Lesson You Should Learn From Jennifer Lawrence

By Mary Reynolds Kane

Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

The internet is buzzing about Jennifer Lawrence’s wage gap essay, “Why Do I Make Less Than My Male CoStars?.” When I read the most shared statements, I was struck by how perceptive she is — and how her thoughts don’t just apply to women. 

 “When the Sony hack happened and I found out how much less I was being paid than the lucky people with d—-, I didn’t get mad at Sony. I got mad at myself,” Lawrence wrote. 

“I failed as a negotiator because I gave up early. I didn’t want to keep fighting over millions of dollars that, frankly, due to two franchises, I don’t need. (I told you it wasn’t relatable, don’t hate me),” she added. Lawrence also wrote that she didn’t push harder on getting paid her fair share because she didn’t want to be perceived as “difficult” or “spoiled.”  

SEE ALSO: Is It Time To Ask For A Pay Raise?

However, negotiation isn’t a selfish tactic. It’s an essential piece in getting what you deserve. Regardless of your role, responsibility or gender, here are four key tips to remember when you’re pushing for appropriate compensation. 

Don’t assume that, because you are working long hours or producing results, you will automatically get an increase. You must meet with your boss, state your expectations for future advancement and salary. Your boss isn’t mean or unreasonable – he or she is simply busy. Maybe they are focused on their own career paths. Maybe they are worried about next year’s disruptors. Even the most supportive bosses slip. Remind them. 

2. If you are coming off a downsizing or lay off, pretend you are gainfully employed during negotiations. It is easy to panic and worry about how you are going to pay your bills when you have been out of work for an extended period, but don’t lose sight of your worth or your future. In six months, once the anxiety has subsided, how will you feel if you find out a colleague is making significantly more than you for the same work? 

3. Everyone negotiates. Most employers expect a bit of back and forth during the hiring process, especially for senior level positions. Remember, THEY want to hire YOU. 

4. Walk away if it isn’t the right fit. If you know the going rate for the position and you aren’t being offered it after negotiations, it might be time to look elsewhere. Why would you want to work somewhere that isn’t willing to pay you a fair wage? 

Thinking about asking for a raise? Be sure you ask yourself these four questions first.


Please log in to post comments.