Exploring A New Mindset To Make More Money: The Ownership Of You

Money Files

On today’s episode, I sit down with my friend and colleague Shamika Marie Hill. We discuss hot topics around career development, salary negotiation, and interviewing for women. As a career development coach, Shamika offers advice on pushing your career to the next level through a shift in mindset around earning money. 

Over 75% of the women Shamika works with are underpaid. Similarly, so many of my clients are afraid to counter salary offers or ask for a raise. It is a consequence of our society (and the patriarchy) that women feel that they should be grateful or thankful for the opportunity to make six figures. This needs to change. We need to shift our mindset as women to earn the money that is equivalent to our skills, education, experience, and value.

If you are ready to realize your true earning potential, this episode is for you. Grab a notebook and a pen because you will want to take notes! Shamika gives actionable advice on how to interview, negotiate offers, and how to shift your mindset to be the best advocate for YOU. 

Listen to this episode to hear Shamika answer…

[00:30:30] What is one mindset shift all women need to make to become a six-figure or even multiple six-figure earner?

[00:33:40] What are four tips you have for women when negotiating their next offer?

Tune in to this episode of Money Files as Shamika and I discuss the crucial mindset shifts women need to make to get the salaries they deserve.

Are you ready to start asking for help with your finances? Apply to work with me, and let’s start working towards your financial goals.


Transcript for “Exploring A New Mindset To Make More Money: The Ownership Of You”

Keina: Hi, and welcome to Money Files. I’m Keina Newell from Wealth Over Now. I work every day with professional women and solopreneurs to help them get out of financial overwhelm and shame, so they can experience more flexibility and ease with their finances. Are you ready to gain confidence and learn to manage your finances intentionally? Tune in and grab financial tips that will help you master the way you think about and manage your finances.

Keina: Hello and welcome back to another episode of Money Files. Before we get started, I want to make sure that you are signed up for my Money class next week. I will be leading How to Budget Without Restriction on Wednesday, May 17th at 12:30 PM Eastern Standard Time. Any of the messages that you’ve heard from me on my podcast, whether this is the first one you’re tuning in to or you’re like, Keina, I listen to you every week, whatever that is, I want you to know how to budget without restriction. Today I’m talking to my guest, Shamika Hill and we are talking about women who are underearning. We’re talking about negotiating and I want you to make more money. But I also want you to know how to budget without restriction. One of the things that I see is that as people make more money, they tend to think, I don’t need to budget or I shouldn’t have to budget because budgeting is restrictive.

If you don’t have a budget, which is what I consider a plan for how you want to invest in your life and how you want to spend money, then you are living a restricted life. I bet you there is so much more you could be doing with your finances, but you’re scared to look at your bills, you’re scared to think about how to pay off debt, maybe you’re even scared to spend money because you’ve saved so much that you don’t want it to all go away. Whatever that is, like I want you to come and join me for this money class, How to Budget Without Restriction, because I guarantee you that you’ve never heard anyone talk about finances in the way that I’m going to show you how you can think about your own finances. 

At the end of the money class, you’ll have an exclusive opportunity to work with me, but go to the show notes. It’s www.wealthnow.com/masterclass. So you can just type that in if you want, or if you are at your computer and you’re listening to this or on your phone and you can easily access the show notes. You can also go there and click the link. But enjoy today’s podcast. It’s with my friend Shamika Hill and we are talking about women making more money. We’re talking about negotiating and it’s something that you’re going to want in your toolkit for 2023. Alright, have a good one. 

Keina: Hello and welcome back to another episode of Money Files. Today I am joined with a friend and I should say colleague. I’m with Shamika. Hi Shamika.

Shamika: Hello. Thank you so much for having me. I’m so excited. This is my first podcast.

Keina: Listen, I wish everybody had heard the last 54 minutes of our conversation. Now you guys are hearing the edited version. Sometimes the edited version is best. Put a little filter on it. But if you just want to go ahead and dive in and introduce yourself.

Shamika: Yes, so my name is Shamika Hill. My online presence and brand moniker is Marie Hill. So I am the owner and founder of Marie Hill Consulting. Marie Hill Consulting is a woman minority owned small boutique consulting firm where I specialize in career development coaching as well as collegiate prep coaching. And what I like to refer to as a small town country girl with big dreams. I was raised in Okmulgee, Oklahoma. Born in Tulsa, Oklahoma. I had family in both. So I am definitely a Okie at heart. I attended the University of Oklahoma in 2005 on a full ride academic scholarship, awarded to me by the United Negro College Fund and Bill and Melinda Gates. After I graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 2010, I went on to study at Texas Women’s University, got my MBA there and then went on to obtain a second master’s, a MHA, Masters of Healthcare Administration from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas.

So with that being said, by day I am a seasoned healthcare administrator with a little over 17 years of experience in the field. Of those 17 years, 10 of them have specifically been in the compliance data privacy and cybersecurity space. Super passionate about compliance, technology, governance, all things risk. I’ve been a consultant working for a big four firm, Ernst and Young. And most recently I led the privacy department at UCLA Health. I’m just excited to be here and be able to chat with you guys today about my experience in the industry of healthcare as well as what I do as a career prep coach.

Keina: What’s so funny is, I don’t know if you know this or if my listeners know this, but when I joined Teach for America, my goal of joining Teach for America before I had like applied to MBA programs and I wanted to get an MBA and an MHA and God has a sense of humor and I became a teacher for life.

Shamika: That is so funny.

Keina: Yep. So you and Tolu like took my life and I just like look at you guys and I’m like, this is what I would’ve been doing.

Shamika: Through the entire process.

Keina: Yes, but you know what? I don’t regret it because I don’t think I would’ve made it sitting at a desk all day. I would’ve died. So I enjoyed teaching

Shamika: Teach for America’s mission is amazing.

Keina: Yeah. So that’s funny. I knew that those were your degrees, but I was just making the connection again that, yes, you or me had I not said yes to Teach for America. And I dare anybody on this that’s listening to this to spell Okmulgee, Oklahoma, which I don’t know if they’re going to hear all the letters in that city

Shamika: And it’s so funny because my country accents like Okmugee, but it’s spelt Okmulgee but I say Okmugee and when I travel and people say, where you from? You got an accent? And I’m like, you’ve never heard of it? And they’re like try me and I’m like, Okmugee, Oklahoma. They’re like, no, I never heard of it. But then when I say, have you heard of Tulsa? They’re like yeah. And so then I’m able to make the connection.

Keina: Yeah. When I tell people I’m from Oklahoma, they look at me like there are black people in Oklahoma. I’m like yes, there are actually a lot of black townships in Oklahoma. You need to learn your history even though it’s not written correctly anywhere in the US but that’s a different podcast episode.

Shamika: Way different episode.

Keina: So Shamika and I, we actually, we were on a girls trip together for a mutual friend of ours birthday earlier this year and we know each other through my line sisters, her cousin, so small world kind of thing. But Shamika and I were talking about her work in terms of career coaching and just talking about her career. And when I hear you talk about what you do Shamika or like how you’re prepping for an interview or prepping your clients, there’s like this assertiveness with how you speak about money or even like in your preparation that when I think about a lot of women that I encounter, they lack. I hear women so oftentimes undervalue themselves. And so I was like, oh no, no, no. People need to hear from Shamika because we have to find our like confidence. Like confidence is one of those things where I think when you actually take action towards the thing that you desire to create, that’s what creates the confidence. So it’s not something that you can sit on the side and wait for. 

Shamika: Yes I agree.

Keina: But yeah, I would love to hear why are you so confident.

Shamika: I think as women of color specifically, so oftentimes it is misunderstood, our assertiveness, it’s misunderstood as aggressiveness. So I appreciate you for just kind of making that delineation between the two. I think my confidence honestly is rooted in my upbringing. I come from a long lineage of very strong women who instilled in me a level of confidence that I feel has really gotten me to this place today. In terms of thinking about from a professional aspect and talking about being assertive in corporate America and being able to be confident in that assertiveness, I 100% stand by my experience, my education, my knowledge and my skillset that I bring to the table. 

And because I’m confident in that, that allows me to show up and then come off like I am confident. When thinking about mindset shifts and thinking about what we need to do as women in order to be confident and assertive enough to be able to ask for what it is that we’re looking for compensation wise or even from an employer. I think it’s important to start thinking and shifting your mindset to that of an entrepreneur even if you’re not, even if you are just a corporate professional. A lot of my confidence too has come from owning businesses and failing in those businesses and not being afraid to fail. Every failure that I’ve had just gave me an additional boost of confidence to pick myself up, dust myself off and go back at it again. 

And so I try to do everything that it is that I do with this mentality of being an entrepreneur, meaning taking ownership of my actions, of how I show up and how I present myself. And to become a successful entrepreneur, women have to be confident. So whether you’re an entrepreneur or you’re a corporate professional, I think it’s important to really position yourself in that way so that you kind of get that extra boost of confidence in your abilities and your leadership abilities. 

Keina: It’s interesting that you make this parallel in between showing up in the corporate space like an entrepreneur, when you talk about this ownership of actions, are there any thoughts specifically that you think about yourself? Like when you walk into different rooms or different spaces?

Shamika: Yeah, absolutely. First and foremost, whenever I walk into a space I automatically tell myself like, okay Shamika, you are a minority and not because of the color of your skin or how you look, but no one else is like you, you’re one of one. There is only one Shamika Marie Hill. And I think just knowing that and believing that when going into a space has been very beneficial and advantageous for me because it has allowed me to really buy into my own theory. Like no one else is going to be able to stand in front of a boardroom and make a presentation the way Shamika Hill does because they’re not Shamika Hill, they don’t have my jazz, they don’t have what comes with me, they don’t have my idiosyncrasies. 

So just knowing that there’s no one else like me, I’m one on one has been very beneficial for me when showing up and walking into a space. And then I think it’s important too, to invest in yourself and investing in yourself can mean education, that can mean networking, that can mean developing new skills. But I think as women we should be comfortable again with the idea of failure and then viewing it as a learning opportunity rather than a setback. And then when you fail, just continue to invest more into yourself. I think that we also as women, we have to learn to prioritize our time and our energy. We kind of touched on this a little bit before we started the podcast recording. To me that means focusing on high impact activities that will help you achieve your goals rather than getting bogged down by more low priority tasks. 

I think that as women we have to be really willing to delegate tasks and outsource when necessary to free up our time and our energy. And I’m preaching to the choir and talking to myself because I’m the kind of person, again, I know I’m one of one, so I know no one’s going to do it like I do it. But it’s important to take a step back and train individuals on how you want things done and then delegate and trust them to get them done in that way. And finally, when thinking about my confidence and how I show up and what has helped me, I think just developing a strong personal brand and then actively marketing myself and my brand. And I learned the importance of that during my time working at Ernst and Young as a senior consultant. They were very big on your personal brand because in the consulting world, especially the big four consulting world, you’re essentially staffed on different projects that may come up. So you don’t want to be sitting on the bench is what they call it, waiting for a new project.

But if you’re not appropriately branding yourself and getting yourself out there, then that’s what’s going to happen to you. And so during my time at EY, my utilization rate was 97%. I stayed booked on something and I think that really spoke to just a strong kind of personal brand that I had created for myself. And so when you’re building your personal brand, that can involve creating a compelling online presence. It could involve building relationships with potential clients and partners or just showcasing your expertise and your achievements. But by adopting that kind of entrepreneurial mindset, even if you’re not an entrepreneur and then taking those steps, I truly believe women can then position themselves for success and to achieve all their goals.

Keina: I have like a page of notes already. So I’m going to bop around a little bit. One of the things you talked about was like delegating and outsourcing and you specifically talked about like training people, individuals on your team. But what came up for me, especially in terms of money coaching, is I talk to people about, I feel like people are like, you can’t buy the latte. Like that’s the money narrative. And so I think like sometimes when we’re spending money we have to think about like how does this free up our time? So maybe you have someone who’s cleaning your house or you are hiring a chef and maybe it’s not all three meals, but maybe you have a meal prep service. And I always encourage people to think about how does this align with your values? 

I just love that you were talking about high impact activities. And I think that some of those high impact activities, you’re going to think about them in terms of your nine to five, but also like outside of your nine to five in your personal life. Like what are those high impact activities? Because I think we can like nickel and dime things and we’re not actually really thinking about something that drives a bigger goal forward for us because we’ve freed up our time because we chose to spend money in a certain way.

Shamika: Yep. I agree with you. I know for myself I’m the sticky note queen. I have sticky notes all over my house. I mean they’re color code coded. The pinks mean one thing, the oranges mean one thing. So for myself, I do a lot of sticky note writing. I create daily to-dos. My nighttime routine has become so habitual and important to me because it truly sets me up for the next day. And so I like to really just kind of jot down, okay, what are all the things that I need to accomplish today? And then from there I like to pick out which of these activities are really high impact, which of these activities are going to really push the needle on something else? Which of these activities are dependent upon me doing something else? And that really kind of drives my day.

Now again, like I said, I was preaching to the choir because I have definitely struggled with delegation, but it’s important to bring people in. I just think that good help is hard to find. And so you have to make sure that you are aligning with individuals that have a very similar work ethic. That’s always kind of been the biggest, I guess, kind of stressor for me. I consider myself to kind of be a workhorse and I’m not saying that’s a good thing. That’s sometimes to my detriment. I just have a very strong work ethic. But I mean I’m the same individual that was in two different master’s programs at two different institutions at one time for like two semesters of my life. So it caused me to have to really learn how to juggle and multitask. But the older I’m getting, I’m starting to realize that there is not as much power in multitasking as I think we’ve been groomed to believe. I think over time of our life we’ve been told, be a multitask or multitask, multitask. But I found myself feeling like I’m multitasking so many things that no one thing is really getting pushed to the forefront.

Keina: It’s not being done well.

Shamika: It’s not. It makes you become jack of trades of many but you’re not an expert in anything then. So I’ve had to really take a step back for myself and really figure out, okay, what are my high priority, high impact activities and then where can I outsource? I brought in a virtual assistant. I had a virtual assistant assisting me and that was just in my businesses. But then when I think about my professional life, in my last role I had a total of four FTEs and honey, the job just was struggling to be done. In my day to day I basically provide compliance oversight for hospitals and health systems. And so that includes making sure that employees in the workforce are staying compliant with your code of business ethics or conflict of interest, making sure employees aren’t accessing patient medical curriculum, when they don’t have a business need to know, those type of activities. 

But what I found was me and my four staff were running in circles just responding to fires. We were being very reactionary. There was not a lot of proactive work that was being done. And for those that are familiar with healthcare compliance, you’ll know that there’s a lot that needs to be done proactively. And so I really had to take a step back and figure out, okay, what do we need to do? And what I realized was we needed to bring in more staff, I needed to outsource more and that’s not always an overnight process. And so I bit the bullet. I brought in two contractors for a while to assist me and my four and then I wrote a really compelling business case and presented it to the powers that be and the executives. And with that we were able to get approval to bring on six individuals to round out my team. And that allowed us then to get out of the weeds of just putting out fires, but to be more proactive and do more proactive audits and monitoring and really go out there and look for the things that could turn into fires before they happen, opposed to allowing them to become a fire and then just putting them out.

Keina: No, I like that. And anybody who’s listening who heard or just say FTEs, it’s a full-time employee just in case you haven’t had experience with what that [19:24 inaudible].

Shamika: My apologies. There are so many acronyms and abbreviations in healthcare.

Keina: I know it from being in school leadership. It’s like you got people started being numbers. We’ve heard a little bit about your career and like Shamika’s really good at what she does, which makes me want to know like how did you get into career coaching?

Shamika: Honestly, it was a natural thing for me. I just decided that it was time to monetize it. But I have always been the person that my friends, family, colleagues, acquaintances would come to and would say, hey, I’m interviewing for this new job, any pointers or hey, I’m looking for a new job, can you help me revamp my resume? Like I’ve been doing this for people since I was like 17, 18 years old, like in high school. And I think that it came from people just seeing my own individual success. Like I was walking marketing for myself. In high school I secured like over a hundred thousand dollars in scholarships to go to school on. And so that’s what really started like the whole college prep thing because adults started coming to me saying, can you help my kid? And then like I said, the career development, it was just natural.

I’ve been doing it for so long. And then about a year ago I was like, wait, why aren’t you charging people for this? Like you’re giving away all your time for free. Because I started to realize how passionate I was about it to the point to where it was like, I can’t just give you some pointers and send you on your way. I’m invested now. You’ve told me about the company, you told me about why you want to work with the company, so now I want to help you do mock interviews and I want to make sure you’re prepared to go in there. And so it was really a natural thing for me. It was just about sitting down doing the work on paper like we discussed and putting the plan in motion. And it was honestly the best decision that I’ve made since then.

And a lot of us out there have side hustles or just hobbies or things that we’re passionate about that were not even monetizing. And at first I had no idea how to monetize it. I was like, is there even a lane for this? And then this thing called social media really just opened me up to the fact that there are so many people that are already doing that. Some of them are called HR specialists and some of them are what I’m called a career coach. And so for me, when thinking about the difference between someone that’s simply an HR professional versus someone a career coach, a lot of what we do when coaching starts with creating mindset shifts. And I find myself being educated through the work that I do with my clients because I’m not perfect. I’m still a work in progress as well, which is why I’m always honored when people trust me with their journey.

Keina: Yeah. What would you say are some of the most common challenges that you see when people come to work with you?

Shamika: I’m going to tell you, 75% of the women that I work with are being underpaid. That’s probably just the biggest thing that I see. People come to me and say, I want to make more money. And we don’t talk about numbers enough. I feel like, it comes off like we’re being, we’re bragging or we don’t talk about numbers enough though. How do you know what to ask for if you don’t know how well someone else is doing? And so people that are close to me, friends, family, whatever, I started to get very comfortable with saying, I make X amount of dollars. And so can you, I’m a firm believer that no one in America should be making less than a hundred thousand dollars a year.

Keina: Hold on. I need everybody hear that. Can you say nobody in America? Go ahead. Say that.

Shamika: I’m going to say no one in America should be making less than a hundred thousand dollars a year. Because truth be told, a hundred thousand dollars really isn’t a lot of money. It’s nothing. And so my heart just hurts when women come to me and they’re making 60 K a year and they’re like, I’m trying to make 70 k. And I’m like, what?

Keina: Me and you both have hurting hearts. I’m like, get in here. We’re going to help your budget, making more money. 

Shamika: It bleeds girl. It bleeds. I would say 75% of the women that I work with are being underpaid. And when they reach out to me and start working with me, that’s usually like the first thing that I really want to tackle is why have you accepted that? And again, that’s the kind of mentality and mindset shift that I think is important. On average women tend to earn less than men for performing the same job or equivalent work. And this gap can lead to women underearning over the course of their entire career. So it’s like once it starts, it’s hard to break it. In addition to the gender pay gap, there are also a variety of factors that can contribute to underearning for both men and women, such as lack of negotiation skills. I spend a lot of time talking to my clients about negotiation skills. 

Before we even get the job offer, let’s start talking about it to get you comfortable with it. And then limited career advancement opportunities and low self-esteem and self-worth, which again ties back to the mentality and mindset shifts, which is why I encourage individuals to work with a career coach, whether it’s me or someone else, shameless pluck, that can help you identify and address those factors and then work towards achieving the desired earning potential. And I get so passionate about this. According to research and studies y’all, there are various reasons why women tend to earn less than their male counterparts. Number one, gender discrimination. It’s real. It’s out there. We know women face gender bias and discrimination in the workplace and that results in unequal pay. And studies have also shown that women are often paid less than men for doing again, the exact same job even when they have the same level of education and experience.

Then you got to think about occupational segregation. Women tend to be overrepresented in low paying industries or occupations and then underrepresented in high paying ones. So for example, I think about careers like healthcare for example, and education, which women typically make up the vast majority of workers in those industries. But then you think about industries such as technology and engineering, which are more of the higher paying industries. Men are dominating those industries. And then you think about family responsibilities. This one really gets me because to me, it’s a societal shift that has to take place. Women are more likely than men to take time off from work to care for children, elderly relatives. And then that impacts their earning potential as a result.

Women then get penalized for taking time off and then they’re being passed over for promotions and pay raisings and it’s like this continuous cycle. And then lastly, it is so important to learn the arts of negotiation. And I emphasize the word art because it’s an art to negotiating. I think women are less likely than men to negotiate their salaries and ask for a raise. And that can result in women being paid less than their male counterparts, who negotiate more aggressively. I just had a client recently who accepted a role. She’s an engineer, accepted a role at a company that she was really excited about working with and she asked for a specific dollar amount, I want to say like 95 K was the number that she was aiming at based off of what she was making previously. And the employer came back with like 90 K. And I remember her saying to me like, Shamika, should I even ask for more? I mean it’s just $5,000 off.

And I’m like, girl, never ever, ever just take what they offer you. I don’t care if they came back and offered you the 95 K. Okay, well after learning more about the role and more about the responsibilities, I’ve decided that I would like to land more so in the range of a 100 to 110. I don’t know, I’m just throwing numbers out there. But I always tell people like never accept what’s offered to you. They actually expect you to negotiate and counter. And sometimes when you don’t, it’s kind of frowned upon and you’re kind of looked at as a novice or a junior in terms of your professional career.

Keina: So many of the women that I work with, and men too when we talk about negotiating for salary, because that’s something that we eventually, I feel like in most of my relationships we get to and it’s like they’re scared to negotiate because they think that they’re going to lose the job. They think that like they’re being ungrateful. That’s something else that I hear. But like for me as a money coach or a financial coach, it’s one of the reasons where I’m like, when you have your numbers in order you can also tell this person, no, I’m not taking this offer because you know where your dollars are. Like I don’t know if I’ve told this story on a podcast before, but I was talking to one of my college friends, white male or high school friends, excuse me, white male. And he was telling me how he went into the office, he wanted to quit and he was trying to get a severance package. 

They gave him a promotion and he was just talking about basically like I don’t need the money. But I was like listening to him and laughing because it’s the same personality that he’s always had. But I’m like, he has a different presence and different beliefs about himself. He also has managed his money in such a way that he is like, listen, y’all can do this or do that. But like at the end of the day, I know I can go over here and do this. And so it’s like for me, like I’ve always wanted to have that level of options for myself. But coming back around to you, like telling people to negotiate even if it’s the number that you ask for. There are so many, so many women and so many of my clients that they’re just scared to counter because they feel like they should be grateful.

Shamika: Yeah. And that’s some thinking, is what I call it. It’s some thinking, thinking. And we have gotta evolve beyond that because the way I look at it is we’re interviewing organizations just the way they’re interviewing us. And if an organization is not willing to compromise with you and meet you halfway, that says a lot about the organization, especially if they spent their time interviewing you. And so I try to really arm my clients with just the encouragement and support they need by making them realize and remember, hey, they’ve invested time in this interview process so if they’ve come down to the end and you are the selected candidate, they’re going to do just about whatever they need to do within reason to make this work. 

So to me that’s the golden hour, ask for what you want. And then I think it’s also important that we get so caught up on numbers and finances, which is important. We gotta be able to survive and live to pay our bills, work to pay our bills rather, excuse me. But I think it’s also important to think about the more kind of non-monetary and tangible benefits and perks. So think about your PTO, think about development and ask for assistance and help with that. That goes a long way too. Especially when thinking about the overall compensation package and not just the salary.

Keina: Yeah. It’s a total value proposition for sure. Okay, I got two more questions for you. So first question, what is one mindset shift like all women need to become a six figure or even multiple six figure earner?

Shamika: I’m going to go back to really positioning yourself as an entrepreneur. I think that as women and thinking about our mindset shifts, I think that it’s important for us to shift our mindset from one of playing small to a mindset of playing big, which means big numbers, big ask. This means for me it has meant letting go of limited beliefs and self-doubt that holds you back from pursuing your full potential and earning what you feel you’re truly worth. We’ve talked a lot about shifting your mindset and your mentality and what that looks like. And for me, Keina made a comment earlier that will probably really stick with me, which was, are you doing the work on paper? And so I had to get out of my mind cause. I’m a Pisces and if you’re into astrology then you know Pisces, we spend a lot of time in our minds and we’re always thinking, thinking, thinking. And before, you know what, I got a hundred tabs opened up like on my laptop. But I had to get all my thoughts out of my head, put them on paper and really just journal and write out what do you need to make to be comfortable. And when I got that number from me, it was large.

Keina: I need you to say the number because people need to hear it. 

Shamika: I was going to say, I’m going to be honest and transparent with you guys, right now I’m currently interviewing for the professional side of my career and I’m looking for $275 to 300 k and been told from potential employers that is not off base with someone of my caliber in terms of my level of experience and my education. But that number scares the crap out of me. It seems like a lot. And I’m like little Shamika from Okmulgee, Oklahoma. Like who do I think I am asking for that much money? But I am no longer playing small. I have shifted my mindset to that of one that plays big and I’m not limiting my beliefs. I think as women we often throw societal expectations and messages that suggest that we should be modest or humble and not overly ambitious, which can then lead to self-doubt and hesitancy when it comes to negotiating our salaries or pursuing those high paying career paths and asking for $275 to $300,000 a year. 

But to become a high earner, it is essential for us as women to recognize our own values, believe in our abilities, and then have the confidence to ask for what we deserve. And I think that by adopting that big mindset, as women we can then empower to take risks and pursue challenging opportunities and then negotiate for higher salaries and benefits. And that to me is what leads to greater financial stability, more career opportunities, and ultimately greater success and fulfillment in our professional lives.

Keina: Well, and I think that just also goes to show something that you talked about earlier. Like when you were talking about your personal brand and even you going into the room and saying you’re a minority, one of the things I wrote down was like ownership of you. And I think that if you can own who you are, then you have this alignment piece. What are four tips you have for negotiating your next offer? So people are like, Ooh, $275 and I know a lot of y’all just lost all your

pearls but pick them back up girl.

Shamika: I’m going to report back too. I’m going to let y’all know how it goes. I really want to show the full 360. So I’m putting myself out there, but I’m going to really report back to you and let you know where I land.

Keina: What I tell my clients, I’m like, if y’all watch Insecure, I need y’all to have a Issa Rae moment in your mirror. 

Shamika: No, so real.

Keina: Yes. Like you gotta be your own hype person. And like I have a client right now that we’re working on a negotiation and she was telling me that she saw this job and the salary band went up to 200K. And I was like, so that already lets your brain know that it’s possible. Now I just need you to post it around your office and like your spaces. So it just becomes a number that you’re comfortable with. Like that’s it. That’s what we need you to do.

Shamika: Getting it out of your mind and putting it on the paper or the sticky note or on the mirror. If y’all saw my bathroom mirror right now I have sticky notes all over my bathroom mirror, which for me, I’m kind of going through my own journey right now. I think career searching is, it’s really a spiritual journey within it. So if you think about it, people don’t really talk a lot about that. But career searching, job searching rather, especially right now it’s hard. The job market is very different. We went from the great resignation where people were putting in notices left and right to now being on the brink of recession. And so a lot of these employers and companies and organizations have gained some of their power back and they know that people are looking for work and it’s hard. 

You’re applying to jobs where you’re the 250th candidate, you’re going against hundreds of people. So it’s important to, like you said, encourage yourself. And so for me it’s been a spiritual journey. It’s been about, again, that mindset and mentality shift. And I have sticky notes all over my mirror just really encouraging me. But thinking about, okay, so back to your original question because I’m so passionate about this girl, I can talk so much.

Keina: What are your four tips, you have for negotiating your next offer?

Shamika: Four tips. First and foremost, research. Research the market. So before entering into negotiations, it’s important that we do our research to find out what other professionals in the field are earning. So use online resources, Google is your best friend and while they might not always be exact, they’re good heart estimates and that’s what an estimate is. So use your online resources such as salary calculators, industry reports and job postings that do provide the compensation ranges to gain a clear understanding of what the going rate for that position is. So that’s tip one, tip two, once you have that sense of what your position is worth in the market, I think from there it’s time to really take a step back and assess your personal value. Consider your education, your experience, your skills, your certifications, your skill sets, your achievements. Make a list of your unique selling points and then be prepared to articulate them during the negotiation.

So I have a negotiation word document that I literally can pull up when it’s time for me to have this conversation that I’m going to have pretty soon because I’m going to get this job and I’m going to make between $275 and 300k, I’m speaking it and I already have a document that’s prepared and it’s ready to go and it lists out my unique selling points and why I feel that I deserve a salary in that range. But you have to be clear and you have to be confident when entering into negotiations. And when I say be clear and be confident, I mean be clear and be confident about your expectations and confident in your abilities. Communicate your salary requirements clearly and professionally and be prepared to back up your demands with solid data and reasoning. 

So for me, I was telling you early Keina, you know my kind of trick of the trade is whenever they say, so Shamika, what are you looking to make compensation wise? I never say, oh well I was hoping to fall between the range of $275 K to $300,000. I never say that because what I’m hoping to fall into just could be a hope and a prayer and a wish. It might not be what I actually deserve or what my value is worth. So what I say instead is, well I’m currently interviewing for roles that would make between $275 and $300,000. But essentially it’s important to be able to show that is your worth because other companies are already interviewing you to make that amount of money. And so I think just that kind of tweak of your verbiage goes a long, long way.

Keina: So some people may have gone through the interviewing process, but what if you’re not sure of what the salary bands are, like if you kind of feel blind to that?

Shamika: I think it goes back to the research. Doing that market research, really getting on the internet and researching what someone in that position is already making. Also it’s important to look at other states and to kind of know state rules and regs. So for example, the state of California, I believe they passed a law recently, please don’t quote me, but I believe they passed the law in legislation recently that says that they now have to post the compensation range. Well there are other states that didn’t pass that legislation. That’s not true. So for me, I would be looking at jobs in California just to see what they’re paying in California and knowing cost of living is more expensive in California. But then kind of working backwards and then being able to tweak that number. And then if you just don’t know, use your resources, get on LinkedIn, reach out to people.

You’d be surprised the number of people that will really communicate back with you and share with you the information that you’re needing. It’s also important to tap into people that look like you. I’m not saying that we can’t tap into other partners that don’t look like us and don’t have the same skin complexion as us. But what I am saying is, I think it’s important to talk to people that are in the positions and the roles that you desire to be in, that look like you because they’re going to have a perspective that is in alignment with what your perspective is. And so I think that’s also important. I also think it’s important to be willing to compromise. I didn’t talk a lot about compromising, but I want to spend a little time talking about that. Negotiations are often a give and a take.

That’s why they’re called negotiations. So we gotta be prepared to compromise. And so I spoke a little bit about, thinking about other perks and this is where I really want to like reiterate, consider other perks such as different benefits, more vacation time, flexible work hours. That’s a big one right now. Being able to work remotely and making that amount of money or a hybrid work arrangement where you’re able to still get some time during the week at home. Think about professional development opportunities. Will they pay for you to attend a conference to get a certification? A lot of times those certifications are really expensive. So think about that. That’s always a way to really sweeten the deal. And just remember that the goal is to reach an agreement that is mutually beneficial for both parties, not just for you. And we don’t usually want to hear that because we’re about ourselves.

And there’s nothing wrong with putting yourself first, especially in this journey. You’re supposed to do that. But I also think that companies want to see that you’re able to be amicable and you’re able to negotiate and come up with an agreement that benefits them as well as benefiting you. And then lastly, know your ideal number and then add a little tax to it. Meaning sit down and write down all your bills and what the bare minimum number you need in order to survive. And then add some cushion, add some taxes because you don’t want to just survive, you want to thrive. So throw in some additional, whether it’s a vacation fund or I want a shopping fund every month. And that’s how you build out your number. So for example, your number might be $10,000 a month. You need $10,000 a month in order to survive so at least 120K a year. Well then I would be asking for 150 to 175 to give you that room for negotiation because again, it’s an art and it’s a skillset that you have to be able to learn.

Keina: You know, it’s like you are listening to my podcast, like if you guys listen to financial visioning, this is what I do with clients. I’m like, do you know how much money you want to make? Like don’t go after the elusive 100 K because that’s what you think is going to be a lot of money because if you don’t know your numbers then you’re going to end up being unsatisfied too.

Shamika: Yep, yep. That just leads to burnout. You’re burnt out then because you know, we don’t want to talk about money being a motivating factor. A lot of times people don’t want to hear that. But I mean unfortunately that’s just what it is. People are motivated by the almighty dollar. So you’ll end up finding yourself being burnt out if you feel like, oh, this work I’m doing, I should be getting paid this amount of money instead of this. And you just find yourself being in this cycle. So yes, it’s important to know your numbers, know what you need to survive, and then know what you need to thrive. Add those together and that’s your number. 

Keina: And it takes, like I think there’s a lot of people that I work with that don’t want to be greedy. Like that’s their thought about earning more and I’m like, you’re not being greedy. You’re contributing to your 401k, you’re traveling, you’re investing in your family. Like there’s a lifestyle that you desire to live and there’s a number that allows you to support that lifestyle. So I just want you to know that number.

Shamika: Absolutely. I agree. But when you think about all of the deductions that comes out of one’s paycheck, like you said, you have your 401k, then you have your benefits and you want to be prepared to make sure that once things are all said and done, uncle Sam’s gotten his cut, insurance has been paid, you’ve stashed the money in your 401K for a rainy day and for retirement, you want to know that final number that makes it into your checking account again is going to allow you to not only survive but to thrive. Because to me that’s where your happiness is going to lie. If you’re just living and working to pay bills, but there’s no extra to take a nice vacation or to buy a nice gift for someone that you love. All the hard work goes out the window and you’re going to burn out. I’ve been there, done that. I got the t-shirt. So I’m speaking from a level of experience.

Keina: Well thank you so much Shamika. 

Shamika: Thank you for having me.

Keina: You’re a little past your time. Of course. I mean, listen, this is the year that we stop underearning and you can be making six figures and still be underearning. Let me also make that really clear. But I hope that you put this podcast on repeat. I hope you find your own personal brand and really think about like what. I love that you talked about like what are those things that are unique. You could ask coworkers, you can ask past colleagues about what are some of the assets that I have especially, I think if you’re someone who gets stuck on that, you’re like, I don’t know the adjectives to describe me. You’re like, what makes me special? Use and leverage the people that are in your network to help you build that confidence. I just really love that you talked about that. And most importantly, like work with Shamika because I just hear about the work she does with her clients. I think she is her own best product as well. Like I said, the reason that I wanted her to come on the podcast, I was like, oh no, no, no. And she’s another black woman. We are not underearning in 2023

Shamika: No more. Period.

Keina: Let’s get it together. And so her and I, we will lead the way for you and we will open the door. We will leave it open for you. It is just up to you to make that way for yourself. So if you go to the show notes, I will make sure that Shamika’s information is there. And thank you so much for tuning in.

Shamika: Thank you so much for having me. This has been great.

Keina: Thank you so much for listening to Money Files. If you’re ready to take the next step to reach your financial goals, head to www.wealthovernow.com/appointment and let’s get started.

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