WiCipedia: The trials and tribulations of salary negotiation

This week in our WiC roundup: Melinda Gates takes DC universities by storm; what the Bumble IPO means for women in tech; International Women's Day celebrates all women; and more.

Eryn Leavens, Special Features & Copy Editor

March 12, 2021

4 Min Read
WiCipedia: The trials and tribulations of salary negotiation

This week in our WiCipedia roundup: Melinda Gates takes DC universities by storm; what the Bumble IPO means for women in tech; International Women's Day celebrates all women; and more.

  • An anonymous survey from Blind, a company that surveys people in tech, has found that salary negotiating isn't always a comfortable topic for women (surprise, surprise). Dice explains that the survey broke down the findings by tech company, and found that the results were wildly different based on the company. For example, at PayPal, 65% of women stated "I always negotiate but it is uncomfortable," while at Lyft this number plummets to 17%. At Airbnb, 60% of women agreed with the statement "I go hard" when it comes to salary negotiation, yet only 9% of women at VMware said the same thing. While women seem to have the reputation of being non-negotiators, that hasn't historically been the case – company culture has simply favored men. As one Microsoft employee put it, "I always negotiate, and almost all companies have refused to budge and then hired a much less experienced man to work for me for far more money. I have learned my lesson. I negotiate hard and I won't join any company that won't negotiate with me." (See WiCipedia: Smile to Get Ahead, Coding Ninjas & 'Women in Tech' Need a New Moniker.) Figure 1: Salary negotiations are no walk in the park (Source: Pixabay) (Source: Pixabay)

    • The fight for company board parity is a burgeoning battle, and the deadline for equality (at least in California) is fast approaching. Girls in Tech is getting in on the goal with a new campaign, "Half the Board: 50/50 by 2025." Girls in Tech's campaign aims to bring parity to the boardroom by 2025. The nonprofit is asking companies and individuals to sign a pledge stating that they are committed to creating boards that are made up of at least 50% women in the next few years. In an open letter to the tech community, Girls in Tech writes, "Empty statements and performative initiatives will never erase the systemic institutional bias holding women back in the workplace. For too long, the business world – and particularly the tech sector – have stymied efforts to allow women to the top of the corporate ladder. Change will only happen when disparities are corrected at the highest levels." (See WiCipedia: How to create a diverse board.)

    • Melinda Gates has set her sights on two Washington, DC-area universities, George Mason University and the University of Maryland, in order to further the mission of expanding the tech curriculum to women. Biz Journals reports that the two schools will join Cornell's Break Through Tech nonprofit program, which works to eradicate the gender gap in schools and companies. The goal is to attract more female, non-binary and BIPOC students to the two universities' STEM programs to "boost their representation" by 12.5% in the next five years. Gates' company, Pivotal Ventures, made a multi-million-dollar pledge to Break Through Tech in 2019 and has partnered with other universities and companies. (See WiCipedia: Tech's Litigation 'Wake-Up Call' & Gates Donates $1B for Gender Equality.)

    • Tired of hearing about Bumble's IPO and the newest billionaire in town? Here's a new angle: Founder Whitney Wolfe Herd may be laughing all the way to the bank, but what this really means for all women in tech is possibility, opportunity and glass-shattering success. In a Medium article, coder/writer Ashley Chang explains that Bumble was born out of Herd's sexual harassment case as an employee of the oh-so-infamous Tinder dating app, and was intended to be the "antithesis of Tinder and the antiquated toxic norms of dating." Herd didn't take the path most expected of a woman in tech; she created her own path and benefited from the successes of her creation. As Chang puts it, "In our times, Bumble's IPO means much more than success and wealth for the company. It represents a safer online dating scene, fosters a world where women have a voice, and serves as the perfect case study for a tech company that balances corporate priorities and social good. And as for Whitney Wolfe Herd, she represents grace, intelligence, and leadership." And we all need more of that. (See WiCipedia: The buzz on Bumble's billionaire boss.)

    • Lastly, this week marked the celebration of International Women's Day on Monday, along with the beginning of Women's History Month. It can sometimes be difficult to acknowledge accomplishments when there's clearly so much left to do, but we wanted to give a big shoutout to all of the women out there – not just in the privileged spaces of tech and telecom – to say that we see you, we acknowledge your hard work and we are rooting for you. (See WiCipedia: Careers After Kids, Int'l Women's Day & Minority Founders.)

      — Eryn Leavens, Special Features & Copy Editor, Light Reading. Follow us on Twitter @LR_WiC and contact Eryn directly at [email protected].

About the Author(s)

Eryn Leavens

Special Features & Copy Editor

Eryn Leavens, who joined Light Reading in January 2015, attended the School of the Art Institute of Chicago before earning her BA in creative writing and studio arts from Hampshire College in Amherst, Mass. She also completed UC Berkeley Extension's Professional Sequence in Editing.

She stumbled into tech copy editing after red-penning her way through several Bay Area book publishers, including Chronicle Books, Counterpoint Press/Soft Skull Press and Seal Press. She spends her free time lifting heavy things, growing her own food, animal wrangling and throwing bowls on the pottery wheel. She lives in Alameda, Calif., with two cats and two greyhounds.

Subscribe and receive the latest news from the industry.
Join 62,000+ members. Yes it's completely free.

You May Also Like