Wearing your Salary on your Sleeve

Very interesting article regarding sharing pay information with your employees.

By David Weaver

Wearing Your Salary on Your Sleeve
When it comes to privacy in the workplace, some things are best kept secret.

Gary’s extensive scrapbook of cat photos that he hides in his top drawer? We’re probably better off not knowing. The number of days in a row your boss has worn the same shirt? We can all speculate, but best not to ask.

Traditionally, individual salary figures have also fallen into the “shhh” category. With the share-all generation entering the workforce, though, what’s typically been confined behind closed doors is now beginning to peek out.

While being open about your salary to your coworkers may sound daunting, sharing at least some aspects of what you make can actually be a healthy thing for your entire organization.

Let’s take a look at a few reasons why pay transparency is a growing trend…

  • Increased trust. Simply put, it’s harder to trust someone when you know some information isn’t on the table. On the flip side, when employers are open and honest about the company’s pay philosophy – the factors that directly affect employee salaries – everyone starts to feel like they’re on the same team. Added bonus: employers that sit down one-on-one with their employees to discuss pay policies tend to develop even higher levels of individual trust and understanding.
  • Better employee satisfaction. Ever get really angry at someone, and then later realized that you just hadn’t seen the full picture at the time? Unfortunately, employees who aren’t privy to what factors went into their salary calculations tend to assume the worst, often leading to a sense of resentment that might be entirely misplaced. The easy fix? Have honest, straightforward conversations about how salaries are calculated.
  • Higher employee retention. With your top talent constantly being presented with other job opportunities, the increased job satisfaction that comes with an open salary culture can be a perk that increases retention over time.
  • Fairer pay for all. Even with strides made in closing the wage gap in recent years, pay discrepancies based on gender, race, sexual orientation, and a variety of other non-performance based factors still exist. Many times, these pay disparities go unnoticed, even by the people most affected by them. When employees can see how their salary stacks up next to their counterparts, organizations are often propelled to take extra steps to ensure equal pay.
  • It’s protected by law. At one point, a company could penalize its employees for sharing salary information. No longer: the Pay Transparency Nondiscrimination Provision ensures everyone can share their own pay information freely if they wish.
  • The point is, open salary conversations are becoming more and more commonplace and many companies are discovering that it’s a good thing, after all.

    Of course, no one’s demanding you write your salary on your sleeve (though that would be an interesting tactic, for sure). But, opening up when it comes to salary communication may foster a new level of trust, job satisfaction, and company progress.

    So, don’t be scared to share!

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