Let's Get More Comfortable Sharing Our Salaries

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It's probably been drilled into you by now: It's uncouth to share your salary under almost any circumstances. You might be seen as a braggart, or you might reveal something embarrassing, either to yourself or someone else. Worst of all, of course, you might spotlight a systemic injustice in your workplace — which is one reason why management so explicitly discourages the practice.


We'd all benefit a lot more from across-the-board salary transparency, though. Studies have found that rather than breeding resentment (at least, assuming the pay is equitable), employees who know what everyone else makes are happier and more productive. Still, nearly 70 percent of workers say they don't know what a fair market rate is for their labor and services.

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One new survey highlights how far we have to go just on gender equity in salary conversations. MyBankTracker has just shared data on two questions that bring women in particular a lot of shame: Nearly twice as many female survey respondents said they'd rather share their weight than their income. The framing of the issue is pretty retrograde, but it does reveal that only about 36 percent of millennial women would be open about their salaries.


That said, millennial men need to do their part: Between 19 and 24 percent of male survey respondents in the 25 to 44 age bracket were willing to talk about how much they make. This may be why upward of 6 in 10 millennial women say they've been paid less than a male colleague for doing the same work.