ask for it, get it. a true story of daring, and reaping rewards
June 26, 2012
Six Months to Build a Dream
She had the number ‘six months’ in her head. This would be enough severance pay to get her feet on the ground and her dream business up and running. It would carry her through the down-time where she would recuperate from a draining corporate gig, through the up-time where she hit the floor running again, and into the hoped-for momentum that would keep the dream business alive. It would be just right.
One Big Hitch
There was one major issue: She wasn’t being let go. She was quitting. Severance pay for someone who was leaving of their own accord? Unheard of.
Did it matter to her boss that she’d worked extra hours, kept her game face on during terrible times–including when being harassed by two male executives–and gone far and above what was expected of her, year after year? It didn’t appear to.
It didn’t matter. This was her dream, her calling, her purpose. When she did the work of her dream gig she felt more alive, more at ease, exactly where she was supposed to be. She wanted to be of service to the world. She wanted freedom.
She prepared her speech. “We have two options,” she said to him. “One path, we don’t even want to go down. The other, which I’ll outline, is the one that recognizes all the work I’ve done, and will help me to leave feeling good about what I’ve invested in this company.”
She was in her boss’s office for less than 15 minutes. When she left, he’d agreed. He had AGREED. Six months severance pay. For all her hard work. For everything she’d invested. For her new future and dream life. She’d dared, stood up, and got what she asked for.
She deserved it.
True story. (She told me over coffee.)
Ask for what you deserve–no matter how small. Or how big. Value who you are and what you do, so others will do the same.
This has come at a good time. Yesterday, I got an offer of 10% of what I wanted to get for my work. I was too in shock to respond to the email, and started making excuses for why I might do it anyway. But this is a good reminder that the main objective is me valuing me.