How One Woman Avoided The Salary History Question, Increasing Her Income By 30%

How One Woman Avoided The Salary History Question, Increasing Her Income By 30%

When Sasha hired me to work with her, she said she had never negotiated a salary and was woefully underpaid in her current position. She was in the midst of the interview process and, fortunately, they hadn’t yet discussed compensation.

Sasha knew how the salary history question can perpetuate the wage gap. She also recognized that if she disclosed her current salary, she’d be at a particularly large disadvantage. In addition to being underpaid in her current role, the job she was applying for was a significant increase in responsibility, in a much larger market and in a different industry.

Read More

3 Steps To Successfully Self-Promote (Without Feeling Gross)

3 Steps To Successfully Self-Promote (Without Feeling Gross)

When the news came out that I was going to receive an award, a friend sent me the following text, “I’m simultaneously so proud and also seething with jealousy. Congrats!!” Her tongue in cheek comment gave voice to a sentiment I picked up on from several female friends.

This particularly sassy friend called it jealousy, but it didn’t feel negative or resentful. It was more like genuine happiness at my success, a curiosity about how I’d made it happen and a hope that they might be honored similarly one day as well.

Read More

Easy-To-Use Templates To Say 'No' To Working For Free

Easy-To-Use Templates To Say 'No' To Working For Free

When you get yet another request to work for free, it can be tempting to send a two-word email that says, “Hard pass.”

So while I love the quote from writer Anne Lamott that, “‘No’ is a complete sentence,” I also know that women can face sanctions when they’re perceived to be self-interested or unhelpful (read: not giving away their stuff for free). A more thoughtful response can help avoid triggering that gender bias.

Here are templates I use to make the process of saying 'no' less stressful:

Read More

Day In The Life: How To Manage A Business During Mardi Gras

Day In The Life: How To Manage A Business During Mardi Gras

For New Orleans businesses, the running joke is that you might as well shut down for the week prior to Mardi Gras day.  Your staff, clients, and customers are getting giddy about their costumes, sugar highs from king cake are the norm, and traffic is atrocious with parades rolling daily starting the Wednesday prior through Fat Tuesday. Needless to say, folks in New Orleans are a little distracted this time of year.

Read More

Leaving On A Jet Plane: 3 Strategies To Ease Business Travel

Leaving On A Jet Plane: 3 Strategies To Ease Business Travel

I love airports. I love people watching, my luggage with the spinny wheels and making new friends in line. Flying is ironically grounding for me, helping me shift perspective and find a spaciousness I can find challenging in my day-to-day. Since college, I’ve gotten my best writing done on planes, so much so that I’ll save up writing projects for when I know I’ll be flying. (This piece included.)

Read More

Getting Ghosted: What Dating Can Teach Us About Business Development

Getting Ghosted: What Dating Can Teach Us About Business Development

A man approached me at a party a few months ago, asking me to spend some time with him. Just a few days later, we spent a wonderful two hours together. I came home excited about where this relationship might go, telling friends and colleagues how elated I was about its potential. A few days later, I emailed him. No response. In the weeks that followed, I reached out by both phone and email several times. I still haven’t heard back.

Read More

When Goal Setting Doesn't Work, Try This

When Goal Setting Doesn't Work, Try This

I’ve been feeling like a hypocrite. A lot of people have read my New Year’s goal setting article, in which I describe using an “eff yeah” list to celebrate your most meaningful or fulfilling moments in 2016 and using that list to build meaningful goals for 2017.

It can be a really empowering process, but this year I’ve been stuck on step two. I’ve used the eff yeah list strategy before, and it’s been an exceedingly powerful tool for me and for clients. But as I did it this year, it felt like I didn’t know what I wanted.

Read More

'Ladies Get Paid' Founder Shares How Mental Health Support Can Help Your Career

'Ladies Get Paid' Founder Shares How Mental Health Support Can Help Your Career

PHOTO CREDIT TO CLAIRE LORENZO

Claire Wasserman is pissed about the wage gap, and she’s doing something about it. With sassy hashtags (#f*ckthewagegap) and 3,000 members, her company Ladies Get Paid helps women advocate to get the pay and recognition they deserve. Wasserman recently shared her experience launching the company and the role mental health support played in empowering her to take action.

After a particularly unpleasant work event that she describes as a glorified frat party, a friend of Wasserman’s introduced her to the concept of the wage gap and they discussed the various forms of inequality women grapple with on a daily basis. Frustration, Wasserman says, can be the greatest motivator for a business, and that was precisely what prompted her to launch Ladies Get Paid

Read More

How Companies Can Retain Millennial Women

How Companies Can Retain Millennial Women

Millennials have a reputation for being lazy and entitled. Women who advocate for themselves get called b*tchy and difficult. Millennial women are not exactly set up for success when it comes to getting what they want out of their careers.

But by 2025 the majority of the workforce will be millennials. As young women strive to find professional fulfillment and companies attempt to attract and retain millennial talent, we need to find a middle ground.

Read More

Try This Fun Exercise To Set Goals In 2017

Try This Fun Exercise To Set Goals In 2017

Invariably, there’s a lot of chatter about resolutions this time of year. Every January we seem to have a collective epiphany about eating better, saving money, and getting in shape.

Real talk about resolutions: You probably won’t be a fundamentally different person in January than you are in July. So why do we all try to make a change at the same time, and why are the changes so often doomed to fail?

Read More

How To Say 'No' To Planning Office Holiday Parties (And Other Grunt Work)

How To Say 'No' To Planning Office Holiday Parties (And Other Grunt Work)

Ever find yourself wondering, “How did I end up taking on another thankless task at work?” You’re not alone.

Women are often expected to do the “office housework,” which can include anything from taking meeting notes, to serving on an undervalued committee, to buying a condolence card for everyone to sign.

Read More

A Day In The Life: Self-Care To Prepare For A Hard Day

A Day In The Life: Self-Care To Prepare For A Hard Day

Sometimes our personal lives take priority over our professional lives. Several people I’m close to are grappling with significant health issues at the moment, so I haven’t had the same stamina and focus I usually have for work. I always encourage clients and friends to be gentle with themselves, particularly in times like these. Since I don’t want to be a total hypocrite (and I think it’s pretty good advice), here’s how I strived to make self-care a priority and to be gentle with myself on a work day this week.

Read More

Work Breakups: When To Quit Your Job or Fire Your Client

Work Breakups: When To Quit Your Job or Fire Your Client

You know those relationships that once they end, you look back and the breakup feels like it was an inevitability? You really wanted it to work, so you tried to ignore the hints that this person wasn't who you wanted them to be. As I was sharing apprehensions about someone I was dating, a friend once told me he didn’t see any red flags, but there were a lot of orange ones. Maybe I'd stuck it out for longer than I had intended to because I'd already put so much energy into it.

Read More

Want More Women in Elected Office? Ask Them to Run.

Want More Women in Elected Office? Ask Them to Run.

An elected official recently told a friend of mine about her experience being the only woman in a budget meeting. After several minutes of listening to her male counterparts discuss cutting funding for mammograms, she asked if they knew what a mammogram was. They did not. Her short explanation caused the committee to keep mammograms in the budget.

It wasn't that her colleagues didn't care about this women's issue, it's that they didn't understand it. Likely unintentionally, these decision-makers were focusing on the needs of people like them.

Whether decisions are being made about mammograms, taking on a risky new project or how bonuses are allocated, it pays to have women in the room – business studies show that mixed-gender teams perform better than all-male teams, and they are more egalitarian.

Read More

Post-Election Lesson: How Women Can Use Our Emotions At Work

Post-Election Lesson: How Women Can Use Our Emotions At Work

Women get “should-ed” all the damn time. You should just lean in. You should overcome the confidence gap. You should #ask4more. In practice, there are no easy answers when it comes to negotiating workplace dynamics as a woman, so try not to “should” yourself about how you feel or what professional path is right for you. Now more than ever, I think it’s important for women to stay grounded in their own emotions and priorities.

Read More

Should You Negotiate An Already Great Offer? 3 Tips To Decide

Should You Negotiate An Already Great Offer? 3 Tips To Decide

A client recently reached out to tell me she was “in a pickle.” She’d gotten a job offer with a salary that was 43% more than she’d made in her last position and she felt torn about whether or not to negotiate for more. She texted me, “My gut says NEGOTIATE and make Lelia proud, but my head says the salary is awesome and appropriate.”

This kind of “pickle” comes up often for my clients. There’s a tension between being happy with the offer and the instinct that they “should” negotiate. Here are three of my favorite strategies for deciding whether or not to ask for more.

Read More

Prioritizing: How (Not) To Drive Yourself And Your Employees Insane

Prioritizing: How (Not) To Drive Yourself And Your Employees Insane

A side-effect of entrepreneurship no one mentions is routinely waking up between 2am and 4am filled with ideas, excitement and anxiety. The next morning, it’s always harder to differentiate between what’s actually urgent and what’s important but not pressing.

Read More