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Dr. Helen

Negotiating while Stupid

March 17th, 2014 - 10:25 am

Over at Slate, there is a ridiculous article about a female academic who asks for too much and is rejected for the job. Naturally, it’s because she is female. Seriously, after looking at the list of demands she wants, who would want her?:

As you know, I am very enthusiastic about the possibility of coming to Nazareth. Granting some of the following provisions would make my decision easier[:]

1) An increase of my starting salary to $65,000, which is more in line with what assistant professors in philosophy have been getting in the last few years.

2) An official semester of maternity leave.

3) A pre-tenure sabbatical at some point during the bottom half of my tenure clock.

4) No more than three new class preps per year for the first three years.

5) A start date of academic year 2015 so I can complete my postdoc.

The dumb advice given by feminists and books like Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead might make women feel good but no one, male or female, does themselves any favors being this entitled when looking for a job. Would you hire this list of demands, male or female? Leave your answer in the comments section.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
She sure knows how to play hardball.

Either they pay up, or she's going to take her philosophy and do it all somewhere else.

Like McDonald's, for instance.
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
I have no idea whether 1 to 4 are reasonable in an academic setting. But a big old NO! to number 5. I'm not hiring for next year, I'm hiring for this year. I doubt any assistant professor is special enough to wait for.

She applied for a job she wasn't prepared to take and then got upset that she didn't get it?
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
Gosh, she's so bossy!
31 weeks ago
31 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (78)
All Comments   (78)
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Nope.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
Let's see, here.

#1- A raise even before you're hired? Really? One might try something a teeny bit more specific than " what assistant professors in philosophy have been getting in the last few years," not to mention why this higher salary would be a good investment for the college. Just because you have the parchment doesn't mean you're worth the money. That's why it's called "bargaining."

#2- A guaranteed semester of (optional) medical leave up front. Sure, just as soon as *guys* get a guaranteed semester leave ahead of time on a regular basis, miss "I didn't get this job because I'm en empowered female."

#3- Again, more guaranteed time off. This must be one crap-hot philosophy teacher, to deserve all of this up front. Oh , wait...

$4- Whiskey Tango Foxtrot!?? Three new class preps PER YEAR!? Isn't that what they're bloodying hiring you for in the first bloody place!?

#5- Oh, sure, we'll adjust out entire program & faculty assignments to fit your own (special) needs, no problemo. Just show up next year, after which you get the few class preps, sabbatical, maternity leave, and big raise you have yet to earn.

... But she didn't get the job because she's a womanyst*. Give me a freaking break.




*cheerfully stolen from the movie PCU. Recommended.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
I don't know much about what assistant professors in that line actually make, but I do venture to say that the list of what I am taking as pre-conditions seems rather excessive. #5 might be reasonable and as for the rest, maybe the contract will be re-negotiated after she's gotten her doctorate (not on their dime?) and they've seen how well she operates in the academic environment after a couple years.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
Look, philosophy is all a matter of asking the big questions. Unlike those limited specialists.

Engineers ask, "how to build it?".
Economists ask, "how much will it cost?"
Physicians ask, "can we cure it?"
Philosophers ask, "would you like fries with that?"
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
If she couldn't tell me why I should want HER and what benefits SHE could bring to the position, I would show her the door pronto.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
'salright. She's a she, so she can start spitting out babies in the certainty that Uncle Obama and his brother Uncle Sam will support both her and her mewly brood for decades. Looking at these 99% ex-Occupiers, I occasionally do have to wonder who are the stupid ones.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
Could depend on whether the job interview came about as a result of her being sought out by a headhunter, or by her just applying. I was recruited by a headhunter and sought by a rival firm and I was able to completely dictate pretty much every aspect of my employment...including making my prospective employer wait a couple of years until my complicated divorce was over.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes, but you never made it in the fast-moving, high-power world of philosophy, you loser!
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
LOL!
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
Academic jobs are like no other employment processes in the world. I did some office management early in my career in both gov't and the private sector, and am now an academic. Academia is just completely different.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
A comment about pre-employment testing seems tombe in order here:

I can't tell you how may times I've had to repeat phone numbers over and over again to dimwits because they don't have the cognitive skills to remember the initial dictation of the number. A simple digit-span test would quickly and simply disqualify these morons from those positions.

But NO! Employers are either to frightened or moronic themselves to do this.

Result? See above.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
Remember, the word "Meritocracy" is sexist and racist. Now go wash your mouth out with scotch.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
I think the key point is W's final item. She has a post-doc that she likes, so she's under no pressure to take the job right away.

She expected to negotiate, but she set her counter offer so high that the college concluded that she wasn't serious. Live and learn for next year.
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
As the great American philosopher Nelson Muntz opines, "HA-hah!"
30 weeks ago
30 weeks ago Link To Comment
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