Know the True Market Value of YOU in a Job Share
Imagine you’re a manager with 10 direct reports and responsibility for the results of a worldwide program. You’re considering creating a job share for the purpose of spending a little more time with your growing children and aging parents. And to do this, you imagine you’ll be making half what you were at full time.
With two equally talented women sharing the position, consider these realities when constructing your job share:
- You are still 100 percent responsible for the program. You are only really changing the location of your work.
- Even as you design the job share—shifting the distribution of tasks and responsibilities between you and your job share partner, and identifying areas of overlap, pinpointing communication strategies—you each have a particular set of skills and strengths, as well as your combined institutional knowledge. This alone provides an exponential benefit to your employer in terms of program delivery, productivity and bottom line results.
- You are both professionals, not hourly-wage workers. You will be checking and responding to emails, probably even at your daughter’s dance recital. You will be putting out fires in the middle of dinner and homework. You will be working on projects and reports at your kitchen table.
Don’t lie to yourself.
Your job share is worth at least—at least—two 3/4 time positions in terms of efficiency and productivity alone.
According to the Job Sharing Resource Guide fromMission Job Share, a study from the UK’s Resource Connection and the Industrial Society showed that “70% of job sharing executives were perceived to have 30% increased output over one person doing the same job.”
Mission Job Share also references Lisa Belkin’s New York Times piece, Time Wasted? Perhaps It’s Well Spent in which she cites the Microsoft study that found American workers really only work 16 hours of the 45 hours/week they spend at work because efficiency decreases rapidly with time spent working.
On the money side we have a bit of grey. Because women have often spent years overworking without regularly negotiating salary increases, it often feels unconscionable to ask for more than 50/50. For this reason you must first become intimately acquainted with your true market value—what it would cost to hire someone off the street who could hold a candle to you. That means assigning a dollar value to all your skills and talents, the results you produce, time on job, career experience, degrees and certifications, and benefits you receive.
And then what? Convey each line item as a benefit to your employer. That means you have to be willing to negotiate. Sing your own praises. To brainstorm. To plan your concessions and ask for reciprocity.
In your conversation, you have to steadfastly align yourself to the big, fat, big deal reason you’re negotiating in the first place: for the benefit of your careerand your family’s wellbeing, both financially and personally. It is not an either/or conversation. That, my friend, is a mutual benefit conversation that will lead to agreement.