The Wage Gap Myth

Nurses Men

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You are reading page 7 of The Wage Gap Myth

Ruby Vee said:

Two of those hospitals I worked in with my ex- were union hospitals. And the less qualified male STILL made more per hour. I am not sure how they managed to do that, because when I talked to HR, I was shown the salary guidelines. The union showed me the same guidelines. I was making what I should have been making per the guidelines; the less qualified male was making MORE.

Might need to define "less qualified". Be as objective as possible. Remove yourself from yourself and look at the situation from a 3rd perspective.

Ruby Vee, BSN

47 Articles; 14,024 Posts

Specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching.
Conqueror Slothful said:

Might need to define "less qualified". Be as objective as possible. Remove yourself from yourself and look at the situation from a 3rd perspective.

Objectively — each males I had shared paycheck stubs with had several years fewer experience as a nurse.   (Roughly five years fewer.)  One of the males had prior experience on an oil rig, driving a tow truck and as a dock worker.  He worked sporadically and often quit jobs with no notice.  He also had an arrest record.  (Yes, it was stupid to marry him.)  

The other male's only "work experience" was belonging to a religious order.  He was separated from the order on poor terms due to some bad behavior.  (It would have been nice to have known that before I decided to marry him.)

Each male had several years fewer of experience in the specialty.

One male had a diploma in nursing compared to a BSN and a graduate degree.  The other had a BSN but no graduate degree.

Neither male was published in nursing.  I was.

Neither male chaired a unit committee, was a member of hospital committees, presented for Nursing Grand Rounds, taught classes, precepted special skills, wrote policies and procedures for the unit, for the service or for the hospital.  I did all of that, and it appeared on my resume. 

Both males worked their twelve hours shifts and went home.  Neither showed up for staff meetings (back when those were in person) or educational opportunities.  Neither male did anything other than care for their assigned patients for 12 hours.  Yet both made more PER HOUR than I did, despite the classes I taught, the certification process I designed for precepting special skills such as LVADs and balloon pumps, the committees I belonged to, the committees I chaired, the policies and procedures I wrote, the outreach I did to community hospitals, EMS and PCPs, and my various certifications that I held and they did not.  The higher hourly rate was, according to one of the managers I worked for, reflective of their genitalia and not their qualifications, especially not for their qualifications relative to mine.  (Sadly, she didn't keep her position for long as she lacked an MSN.)

Specializes in Psychiatry.

I'm a man and make significantly more than new hires due to longevity.  My facility only compensates for 10 years of outside experience and every year I get a percentage increase which has compounded over my 15 years at the same facility.  There is a standard wage algorithm, but the compounding from yearly increases throws this off a bit.  The work itself has gotten more hectic and dangerous with more liability, but I just can't see myself leaving due to the wage I'm making (basically the same as a nurse practitioner).  The women I work with are leaving because of safety concerns and marriage (moving where their husbands want to go) and for child rearing.  Sometimes they leave and come back at a later date, but then don't benefit from the yearly compounding.  

azhiker96, BSN, RN

1,129 Posts

Specializes in PACU, ED.

My daughter is a college professor at a fairly liberal university. She has told me of a few instances where males were paid more than her even though she has better qualifications, teaches more classes, obtains more grants, and oversees more graduate students.

However, her husband has not worked since they got married. Based on how the government reports the wage gap, in this case a woman is making more than a man. Add in my two step daughters who are both doctors and make more than their husbands, men are definitely paid less than women. 

Equal pay for equal work has been the law of the land for decades. I think the government needs to make sure their reporting represents gender based pay for equal positions instead of claiming overall gross earnings are a fair representation. I have seen an article or two that say for some younger cohorts women are paid more than men, largely due to young men not entering the workforce.

FullGlass, BSN, MSN, NP

2 Articles; 1,507 Posts

Specializes in Psychiatric and Mental Health NP (PMHNP).

I am tired of this Wage Gap myth.  It is a myth.  The problem is that wage surveys do not factor in part time vs full time workers, women who take time off from their career for a family for awhile, etc.  It also does not take into account pay negotiation skills.  I used to be a business executive.  The truth is that many women are shy about asking for more money and they are just not as good at negotiating for themselves.  

1.  Women at senior executive levels actually tend to make MORE and are indeed tough negotiators for their own pay.

2.  When you only look at what women who work FT who are in their 20s and 30s make vs the same men, women make a little more!

I started to study how men get jobs, promotions, raises, etc.  What I learned (in the business world), is that if you ask a man if he can do something, he thinks "Could I learn to do that?"  If the answer is yes, he answers yes, like he can already do it, figuring he can learn how quickly.  Women will say, "No."  So, when going for a new job or promotion, I started doing the same thing - worked like a charm.  I also learned to do good market research and know my market value, and started asking for that.  That also worked like a charm.  I also learned to project confidence and competence, as well as developing "command presence."  The end result was that I was always one of the highest paid employees in my role.  

When I became an NP, I applied the same principles.  I also looked for ways to increase my pay by choosing more lucrative specialties, as well as being willing to move to areas that paid more.  

There are plenty of female RNs and NPs who make big bucks.  Learn how they do it, and then do the same.

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