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She spent $500 on a coaching call and made $50,000 more.

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One of the very first things I noticed on my call with Sara was how she repeated a phrase I hear all the time.

“I could be making way more money, but it’s not about the money.”

Not giving ourselves permission to want more is often what holds us back from getting more, especially when it comes to money.

  • We don’t want to seem greedy, selfish or money-hungry.
  • We don’t want to reduce our effort and time to dollars and cents.
  • We don’t want to feel slimy, cold, or transactional.

 

So we settle for less and slowly resent more until we explode.

That’s the exact cycle Sara was in.

She loved her company and current position, but she was managing all the accounts in their largest state- over 50% of the entire company’s book of business – and doing more work than anyone else on the team.

Frustrated, overworked, and heading for burnout, a door at another company opened.

With a $50K increase in salary.

Since it had only been a year since her last promotion to VP and company policy was to wait 2 years for the next one, there was no promotion in the near future. She entertained the new opportunity – both as a potential change and as current leverage – but felt an overwhelming level of anxiety, weeks of sleeplessness, and constant fear that asking for more money would damage the relationship with her manager.

  • Would bringing up the new offer tick everyone off?
  • How could she navigate this without leaving anyone hanging out to dry?
  • Could she negotiate without jeopardizing the quality and timing of the work?

 

Sara delayed her interview process and called me for a laser coaching session to get emergency strategic advice.

One of the first things she said was that all-too-common phrase.

“I could be making way more money, but it’s not about the money.”

At first, I let it pass, but when she mentioned telling her manager that money didn’t really matter to her, I couldn’t ignore how bent out of shape she was getting.

She was saying one thing and feeling another, trying to convince herself that the money didn’t matter when it did. So I called her out, saying

“We wouldn’t be talking right now if the money didn’t matter. You can be doing incredible work and want to be paid well for it, not because you’re only in it for the money, but because the money represents your value in the marketplace. Two things can be true at the same time.”

She paused, realizing how much she was pushing away the very thing she wanted, and recognized how her internal conflict was causing most of her suffering.

Without the permission to want more, there was no way she would get more.

So, over the course of our one-hour call, we talked through her ideal situation (to stay and get a raise), laid out the consequences with every option and crafted an honest and open communication strategy for her to approach her manager.

Our call gave her the confidence and clarity she needed to express her position succinctly and strategically:

  1. I love this job, love working for you, and appreciate all the opportunities that you provide.
  2. I was approached by a recruiter soon after I found out about not being promoted and pursued the conversation hesitantly.
  3. They’ve offered a 20% increase in my base salary.
  4. I’m committed and responsive, always delivering what you need, arriving with solutions instead of problems and I manage over 50% of the book of business.
  5. I want to stay and keep working for you, so my ask is for you to match this offer.


Guess what happened?

They matched her offer.

One strategy call with me and she walked out the door with $50,000 more than when she walked in.

When she came to see that what she was asking for wasn’t just money, but compensation for value, she stood up taller, noticed the quality of her contributions, and gave herself permission to ask for what she wanted.

And she got it.

She spent $500 on a coaching call and gained $50,000!

It was worth every penny.

Have an upcoming negotiation? Book your laser coaching session with me today.

Pooja Dang is a Women’s Executive Leadership Coach based in the San Francisco Bay Area, serving clients globally at companies such as Google, GoPro, Dropbox, and more. With over 15 years of experience in coaching, advising, and propelling women towards rapid career advancement and promotion, she specializes in high-impact workshops and dynamic 1:1 coaching, delivering breakthrough outcomes and accelerated change. Pooja has a proven track record of coaching women into the C-suite and is a trusted expert in growing executive presence, expanding influence, high-stakes negotiations, and leadership development. Using proven scientific strategies, transformative behavior tools, and a no-BS approach, Pooja is on a mission to empower more women to live confidently at the top of their game. Book your free consultation today. #ExecutiveCoach #LeadershipDevelopment #WomenInLeadership #BehaviorChange #CsuiteCoaching

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