Posted September 12, 2014 by

What to Do When Your Less Qualified Coworker Makes More Money Than You

Jennifer Parris

Jennifer Parris, Salary.com contributing writer

For the most part, you and your colleagues get along fairly well. As a team, you’re pretty much in sync, with each member pulling his or her weight. That is, with the exception of one team member, who does the least amount of work possible.

Ironically, you discovered the same colleague also makes the same amount of money as you. It’s understandable to get upset, but if you truly want to fix the situation there’s a right and wrong way to go about it.

Here’s what to do when your colleague earns the same as you—and does less.

Remain Calm & Take Stock

While your first reaction might be to flip out, it’s best to take a practical approach to the situation.

Are the two of you in the exact same job with matching job responsibilities? Do you have the same education level? Perhaps your coworker has a higher degree, extra certification, or more years of experience. These things matter and even though you might not want to hear it, could be the (very good) reason you’re getting paid less.

After all, you can’t complain to your boss that your colleague deserves a demotion and a reduced salary.

Do Your Research

Your first thought was probably to ask for a raise. Understandable. But make sure you go in armed with the right information.

Did you negotiate salary when you were hired? If you didn’t and your coworker did, it’s no wonder he/she makes more money. But before you go in and try to remedy that, do some research. Head to Salary.com’s free Salary Wizard and figure out what the median salary is for your job in your specific location. And if you want an even more precise salary range as well as other helpful negotiation tools, consider buying a Personal Salary Report.

After all, you might find out you’re already paid fair market value for your experience and education level. But either way, you should have a target and a plan before you go in for the negotiation.

Continue reading . . .

Article by Jennifer Parris and courtesy of Salary.com

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