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We have been conditioned in society to believe that talking about money is a bad thing. You might avoid discussing your salary with friends and family, and talking about your hourly pay rate with colleagues might be frowned upon. There can even be discomfort associated with asking for a raise from your employer. As uncomfortable as you might feel about discussing finances in your professional and personal life, it can be crucial for some of the following reasons.
To Get Ahead in Your Job
Not everyone knows how to ask for a raise in their workplace. You might have worked for a company for a long time, but requesting more money to reflect your value to the business and keep up with market rates and inflation can be daunting.
While many well-organized companies schedule annual pay reviews to ensure their employees are well looked after, not all do. If you work hard, bring value to your employer, and have not entered into discussions about your pay rate for at least a year, now might be a perfect time to ensure you’re getting ahead in your current line of work.
To Make Sure You’re Being Paid Fairly
Many employers used to ban or discourage wage and salary discussions amongst co-workers, and some still do. That practice is now prohibited in many states, along with not sharing salary ranges when advertising job openings.
One of the only ways to know whether you’re being paid fairly among your peers is by entering into open and frank discussions with them about how much you’re paid per hour. When your employer knows you discuss money with your colleagues, they may be more likely to pay your entire team fairly or risk general unhappiness in their workforce.
To Avoid Financial Difficulty in Your Personal Life
While talking about income in the workplace can be uncomfortable, it also can be in your personal life. You might have entered into a new relationship where income hasn’t been a topic of discussion, or you haven’t made your family and friends aware of what you earn.
It might not seem like something you need to talk about, but it can be if you have to make purchases that might impact your relationships and financial security. For example, your friends might want to organize a luxury trip away that you can’t afford, or family members or colleagues need you to chip in for a lavish gift for someone special. If they have a fair idea of your current earning potential, they might make requests more reflective of it rather than simply assuming that you have as much money as they do.
To Help Future Generations
You might not realize it, but entering into discussions about money in your personal and professional life can be one of the first steps toward normalizing the practice. When other people see you do it, they might be more likely to feel comfortable doing it themselves, which might be all it takes to change the culture around pay transparency.
While money has traditionally been a taboo topic that very few people discuss, it doesn’t have to stay that way. Being open and honest about your financial situation might improve your earning potential, ensure you receive a fair wage, and prevent many uncomfortable situations in life.
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