Women, Learn The Art of Negotiation to Grow Your Career!

March 20, 2024 thehrobserver-hrobserver-womeninscience

One of the key challenges women face in contemporary society is the struggle to negotiate for their goals, whether it involves salary increments or benefits contributing to their work-life balance.

Doaa Taha, an accomplished Professor specialising in Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence, explains that the only way forward for women in the workplace is to learn the art of negotiation. 

“They were looking for you and they put an offer for you. So believe me, you are valued and you can really negotiate,” she said.

Doaa grew up in Kuwait with a family that has given her the platform to pursue her passion in STEM. She has extensive experience in Big Data, Forecasting & Optimisation, and Business Analytics. She has also contributed to various research and development projects focusing on Data Science, including investigations into breast cancer data resources and COVID-19 pandemic metadata.

“I have loved Math since a young age, so it came naturally,” she explains on how she got involved in STEM.

Furthermore, her expertise extends to diverse subjects, including her notable contributions to the study of Public-Private Partnerships for Crisis Management and E-Government. Her work has been widely published across these domains, showcasing her commitment to advancing knowledge and innovation in relevant fields.

Doaa is currently the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Outreach and Partnerships at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology. She is leading the University’s expansion within the Middle East.

Her message throughout her work with women is clear: women should not simply accept everything and express gratitude. Instead, inquire politely if there’s flexibility for negotiation. 

If they confirm, take your time to consider and respond appropriately. Say, “Thank you for the offer. Is there room for negotiation? Based on their response, you can then make an informed decision on how to proceed to the next step.

In her opinion, women ask for what they need, but they don’t know how to negotiate, whether in terms of benefits or salaries.But also in terms of career advancements where there are very limited women representation on the C-suite when it comes to STEM.

Doaa believes that women should consider becoming proactive by joining a women’s group and attending workshops. This will provide them with valuable insights into various aspects that they will appreciate. Moreover, they will learn techniques to confidently assert themselves without feeling intimidated by anyone’s actions. She explains that mastering these skills may seem trivial, but they can make a significant difference in a female’s career.

Her advice for women looking to break into male-dominated fields is literally to stay calm and do it, but more precisely:

  • Remain focused on your professional objectives
  • Make sure you do your homework, upskill and remain at the top of your game technically, but also make sure you are well rounded when it comes to your general corporate, professional and business knowledge and acumen, including your soft skills, interpersonal skills, individual and team skills
  • Use every opportunity to network and mobilize the support of mentors, regardless of gender
  • Know your own value, do not sell yourself short, and never be ashamed to ask for more responsibility and the remuneration you deserve
  •  Stay abreast of what is happening in your field, the state-of-the-art, and make sure you develop critical thinking skills in order to make your knowledge matter and in order to have an impact
  • Have a positive and confident outlook, as what you project is who you are.

“The best thing is to be cold as ice,” she advises women to be able to manage their emotions to ensure that they can reach their end goal. 

As women, she explains, it is important to consider what steps they can take to secure my place in the workforce. With the possibility of automation replacing traditional roles, it’s essential to adapt and explore avenues where they can thrive. 

Many countries and regions are already prioritising technological advancements, which underscores the urgency for women to embrace technology in their careers.

“I urge all women to seriously consider incorporating a tech component into their careers,” she said, explaining further that by doing so, women not only safeguard against potential job displacement but also open up new opportunities and enhance professional versatility. It’s a proactive approach that can only benefit women in the long run.

Editor’s Note: This year, The HR Observer celebrates International Women’s Day by rolling out different perspectives on how to empower women.


The HR Observer

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