Recently there was a discussion on Facebook regarding the Woman’s march. The subject of the “gender gap” came up. I took the position that there is no such gap and one person posted this article that tries to debunk the argument that there is no gap. Though the author claims the statements he makes are fact, they are, after all, opinion. I answer his conjecture paragraph by paragraph. I am pretty sure the author, being an “expert” and publishing in PBS has never been challenged on his opinion.
My comments are in red.
“Ask the Headhunter: Women don’t cause the pay gap. Employers do”
BY NICK CORCODILOS April 12, 2016 at 1:55 PM EST
In this special Making Sen$e edition of Ask The Headhunter, Nick shares insider advice and contrarian methods about winning and keeping the right job, on one condition: that you, dear Making Sense reader, send Nick your questions about your personal challenges with job hunting, interviewing, networking, resumes, job boards or salary negotiations. No guarantees — just a promise to do his best to offer useful advice.
Too often women get paid less for doing the same jobs as men. And the reason is not what you’re told. Although it seems to elude the media, the experts, pundits and even some women themselves, the real reason is obvious to any forthright business person: Employers pay women less, because they can get away with it.
By this Nick means employers are still in some cases able to negotiate with women without interference from government on what the employer is willing to pay vs. what the woman will accept as pay. Meaning also the government either has not pointed a gun at the employer’s head or perhaps has not yet cocked the hammer back.
Worse, the same pundits tell women that it’s their problem and that they must change their behavior if they want to be paid fairly for doing the same work as men. But the experts, researchers, advocates and apologists are all wrong. There is no prescription for underpaid women to get paid more, because it isn’t women’s behavior that’s the problem.
There is only one thing a woman should have to do to get paid as much as a man: her job.
Not really, she (or he or anyone) needs to do their job in order to keep their job.
Any employer (except for government employers who do not have to worry about meeting a payroll) will always want to pay the lowest price an employee is willing to accept for their services. A business does not OWE a potential employee a job. They owe their customers a quality product at a price they are willing to pay in order to make a profit for the company.
This argument is the same claptrap liberals shovel out all the time, intimating that women are so stupid, so timid, or incompetent that they are incapable of getting pay they want so there must be laws enacted to make sure they cannot take a job that they want and a salary they are willing to accept.
When doing the job doesn’t pay off, women of all ages should be aware of what younger women today are doing to fight back. According to a recent study by the International Consortium for Executive Development Research, some women have figured it out. Millennial women don’t need instructions to change their negotiating, child rearing, educational or any other behavior to impress errant employers. They know to quit and move on. It’s going to be the new trend.
THIS is entirely acceptable. This is the free market in action. This is what should be being done. It is a risk however and the person doing it may be afraid of confrontation or loosing income. That is also part of the free market. Entrepreneurs start their businesses risking many times ALL of their money in order to get their enterprise off the ground. They are not guaranteed a wage and many have sacrificed their own pay in order to pay their employees what has been agreed. They do not, however, always have the luxury of quitting and moving on.
The myths about women causing their own pay problem
Let’s look at what women are supposedly doing to abuse themselves financially.
We can refer to umpteen surveys and studies about gender pay disparity — and to some that suggest there is no disparity. But a recent Time analysis summarizes the data from the U.S. Census and other sources: “Women earn less than men at every age range: 15% less at ages 22 to 25 and a staggering 38% less at ages 51 to 64.”
This has become favorite fodder for the media — and for armchair economists, gender researchers and pundits looking to bang out a blog column. But I think most of the explanations about pay disparity and the prescriptions for how to get equal pay for equal work are bunk.
Depending on what you read, women get paid less because they:
- Have kids.
- Interrupt their careers for their families.
- Don’t have the right education (e.g., math and science), so they can’t get good jobs.
- Are nurturing, so they don’t negotiate hard for equal pay.
- Don’t like to argue.
- Lack confidence.
- Let their men (who are also managers) get away without doing household chores — so those men don’t know they should pay women fairly.
It’s all speculation and myth, but the message is always the same: If women would just change some or all of those behaviors, they can shrink the pay gap.
I say bunk. Women don’t cause the pay gap. Employers do. So employers should change their behavior.
I say bunk on your bunk. These are all valid reasons for employers to be circumspect about paying women the same as men but lets say a woman is making the same pay per hour worked as a man. Having kids and mothers taking off time to tend to them takes away hours from the job. Many women do take time off from their careers to have kids and to raise them. They therefore come back into the work force with less experience than the man (or woman) who did not take off for their kids.
Things like not knowing their worth, not liking to argue or negotiate because they LACK confidence is something that can be handled by training and drilling. Perhaps this is something missing from their schooling. In any case it is not up to the employer to make up for the employees deficiencies.
In the past year or two, it was pointed out that Jennifer Lawrence of Hunger Games fame was paid less than many of the male actors on the cast. The Sony (women) executive acknowledge this and said (rightly) that it was up to Jennifer to know her worth and that it was her (the executives) job to keep expenses down.
Jennifer to her credit said: “I failed as a negotiator because I gave up early,” I didn’t want to keep fighting over millions of dollars that, frankly, due to two franchises, I don’t need.”
I’ve been a headhunter for a long time. I’ve seen more job offers and observed more salary negotiations than you’ll see in a lifetime. I’ve observed more employers decide what salaries or wages to pay than I can count. And I am convinced the media and the experts are full of baloney about the pay gap between men and women. They are so caught up in producing eye-popping news that they’re doing women a disservice — and confusing speculation with facts.
The above sounds like you are confusing speculation with facts… just sayin’.
Here are the facts:
- Employers pay women less to do the same work that men do.
Well, there’s just one fact, and that’s it.
This is opinion not a fact. You might want to get clear on the definitions of both words.
Women don’t make themselves job offers, do their own payroll or sign their own paychecks. The gender pay disparity is all — all — on employers, because we start with a simple assumption: A job is worth x dollars to do it right, no matter who does it. It’s all about getting the work done. And the employer decides whom to hire and how much to pay.
Here’s the hard part for economists and experts to understand: Employers decide to pay women less, simply because they can get away with it. The law of parsimony instantly leads us to the obvious explanation: Paying less saves companies money. Everything else is speculative claptrap.
Exactly. It is the employer that decides whom to hire and how much to pay. If I were hiring for my business and I knew I could “get away with” hiring women for less money and they were just a qualified, I would hire ONLY women in order to lessen my payroll.
I have to assume that the argument being made is that employers are bad people for paying women less. If I were doing it men would be out of a job all over the place because I would not hire them, I would let my competition with stupid misogynist in charge of hiring, hire only men at exorbitant prices because then I can eventually run them out of business and perhaps also pick up a few guys who are now willing to take a lower salary and place under my now more experienced women employees.
In the rest of the article the author goes on and on over the same points and I, frankly, found it tedious to continue with it.
You can read the rest of it here: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/making-sense/ask-the-headhunter-women-dont-cause-the-pay-gap-employers-do/
According to the Cato Institute: “Warren Farrell the only man to have been elected three times to the National Organization for Women’s New York board of directors, is the author of such books as The Myth of Male Power and Why Men Are the Way They Are. In his new book, he argues that women earn less than men on average not because they are discriminated against, but because they have made lifestyle choices that affect their ability to earn. Why Men Earn More argues that although discrimination sometimes plays a part, both men and women unconsciously make trade-offs that affect how much they earn. Farrell clearly defines the 25 different workplace choices that affect incomes–including putting in more hours at work, taking riskier jobs or more hazardous assignments, being willing to change location, and training for technical jobs that involve less people contact–and provides readers with specific, research-supported ways for women to earn higher pay.”
You can learn more about Mr. Farrell’s book here: https://www.amazon.com/Why-Men-Earn-More-Startling/dp/0814472109/ref=pd_sim_14_1?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=0814472109&pd_rd_r=VJG1S1CSV2T5HWHVGZ41&pd_rd_w=2yQUe&pd_rd_wg=6BklL&psc=1&refRID=VJG1S1CSV2T5HWHVGZ41
Hanna Rosin at Slate has also spoken out on this: “ …The point here is not that there is no wage inequality. But by focusing our outrage into a tidy, misleading statistic we’ve missed the actual challenges. It would in fact be much simpler if the problem were rank sexism and all you had to do was enlighten the nation’s bosses or throw the Equal Pay Act at them. But the [more-accurate] 91 percent statistic suggests a much more complicated set of problems. Is it that women are choosing lower-paying professions or that our country values women’s professions less? And why do women work fewer hours? Is this all discrimination or, as economist Claudia Goldin likes to say, also a result of “rational choices” women make about how they want to conduct their lives.”
Mr. Corcodilos, is a headhunter. He has a vested interest in getting the most recompense for his clients that he can. Anything that can persuade or guilt a prospective employer into paying his female clients more is fair game but don’t confuse his endless speculation and opinion with facts.
In short the article he writes and in which he denigrates any actual reasons women might be being paid less as “bunk” is clearly an effort to shut down any dissenting opinion and make less of actual facts. This is, in short, validation to the erroneous idea of any woman who thinks the problem is “over there”.
A person, male or female, is responsible for the condition they are in…no one else. If you aren’t being paid what you think you are worth, quit and move on or get so good you can demand more. Using Mr. Cordoilos’ excuses are just a crutch that will in reality hobble you and prevent you from reaching your goals and the pay you want.