The love language of economists is money

I actually just said this to my associate dean who stopped by to say I’m doing really well in Google analytics.  Which was nice of him.  I said I felt all warm and fuzzy, but then a little warning bell went off in my head– warm and fuzzy cannot substitute for showing me the money.  So I added that I hoped it would show up in my percent raise next year.  After all, I noted, money is the love language of economists.  He said he’d noticed that.  Then skedaddled away as quickly as he could.

Was that the wrong direction to go?  Maybe.  As a woman I’m damned no matter what I do.  But I also have options and I know I’m underpaid (compared to similarly impressive [but male] people).  On top of that, our raises were figured out in the most stupid way possible last year and I would like to NOT see a repeat of that.

He may not stop by to sing my praises again, but hopefully he’ll keep this in mind when setting raises next year.  I also put in a good word for two of my (similarly underpaid, but similarly impressive) junior female colleagues.  We’ll see.

16 Responses to “The love language of economists is money”

  1. Holly@ClubThrifty Says:

    Hey, nothing wrong with being assertive! I hope you get a raise!

  2. Liz Says:

    I got a great raise (20%) once after three performance reviews in which I presented data that clearly showed I was being underpaid. So then I stopped participating as much (more like I specialized my “extra activity”), and started getting not-as-awesome performance reviews and not-as-awesome compensation. But you know what? I’m also not working OT like a crazy person and feel comfortable saying no. Wins and losses, I say.

    • Liz Says:

      Clarification: I did not get a raise and then check out. I got a raise, they more than escalated expectations without saying so, to the point I had anxiety attacks and real physical symptoms of the stress I was under. I repeatedly noted how stressed out I was and tried to find solutions like prioritization, etc., but nothing really worked. So I started explaining why I was opting out of things, leaving the door open for future engagement while taking the time as best I could to get healthy again.

  3. middle_class Says:

    I think it’s good you were assertive. It’s very important that you plant the idea in his head that you deserve a good raise!

  4. becca Says:

    I’d usually just go with a “Hmm- glad to hear it’s going well. In that case, Google analytics sounds like a PHENOMENAL basis for part of the merit raise formula next year!” instead of using the term love language (which is weird to people who haven’t read that book). But to each her own. It’s definitely better you said something than said nothing, or basked in the glow of warm fuzzies, worked harder, and then still got no more money at the end of the day.

  5. Cloud Says:

    I suspect that the hint of humor helped, actually. I find that I get the best outcomes from being assertive when I can do it with a side of humor. Probably this makes it less confrontational and weird for the dude on the other end. I don’t know.

    Regardless, I hope it worked and you get that raise!

  6. Revanche Says:

    I’ve done the exact same thing! It was deflected with a joke in the moment but my point was made and I did see an above standard raise when the time came around :) like Cloud says, occasionally the humor lets your point be made without being awkwardly confrontational. I’ll never stop joking about how I should see tangible rewards for my efforts so long as it pays off!

  7. OMDG Says:

    It could have been the use of the word “love” that wigged him out, even if in context it didn’t mean love in “that” way. I remember trying to set up a networking meeting with a man who was a few years ahead of me in MD-PhD, and I said something along the lines of, “I’d love to meet up for coffee to discuss your program/career path in more detail.” After appearing initially enthused about doing this prior to the email, he never responded. I concluded a) he had no social skills, and b) was too dumb to distinguish a career talk from a sexual proposition. Perhaps he thought I was hitting on him (HAHAHAHA!!!!!)? Whatever. Loser. I still got where I needed to go.

  8. Comradde PhysioProffe Says:

    Good for you sticking up for yourself! But I have to admit I’m a bit confused about how Google Analytics is a metric that an academic dean would employ to judge academic productivity. What Web site were the analytics for?

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