Why don't I make more money?

Posted a little while back on MSNBC – http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18418454/ – One reason for the pay gap – women don’t ask.  It’s about the stuy on the pay gap between men and women, and even though there is a definite bias factor, the other major reason – women don’t ask and/or don’t negotiate.

I never thought I was one of them, but let’s just say it came glaringly to my attention that other people at the same level are getting more than I am.    Now I thought I was pretty savvy with my career – I ask for feedback and it’s been positive, I can clearly list my recent and not so recent accomplishments in my current position.   My reviews have been positive.  I consistently ask about what’s next, what can I do to get me to the next level?

Job functions are a little vague here, so I focus more on whatever project would allow me to get to the next level, i.e. promoted, to which I assume there will be more moolah attached.  Besides, I also figure it’s what you do, and how much you’re paid for it that matters more than what it’s called (product management vs. project management, for instance.)  And I get answers, and go in that direction. 

But now, after getting a little more information, it seems like just asking about performance isn’t enough.  Perhaps the soft sell isn’t getting me where I need to go – do I need to say, “I don’t care what’s next, or what you ask me to do, I will do, just as long as I get a raise?”

Any thoughts – do you have to explicitly ask for the money to get it – or is monitoring your career without implicitly going for the dollars enough?  And does it really matter whether or not you deserve it?  Is it all about the asking?Is this a man vs. women thing?  How do you ask? 

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