It can be incredibly intimidating to negotiate for a higher salary. This can especially be the case when you are just starting your career and perhaps fear rocking the boat or being perceived as entitled.
But according to a new study, how much your income will grow in your lifetime will be determined during the first 10 years of your career.
The economists looked at the labor income histories for cohorts of people who started working in 1957, 1967, 1977 and 1983 and found that generally the pay was less in later years and the biggest salary bumps occurred by the time the individuals in these groups turned 25-years-old.
As far as the gender breakdown, the economists noted that for men, for example, who entered the labor market in 1967 vs. the ones that started working in 1983, the median income dropped anywhere from 10 to 19 percent.
For women who entered the workforce at a higher rate, as time went on the “median lifetime income increased by 22 percent - 33 percent from the 1957 to the 1983 cohort, but these gains were relative to very low lifetime income for the earliest cohort.”
All the more reason to get comfortable with knowing your worth and advocating for it as best and as early as you can.
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This article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Minor edits have been done by the Entrepreneur.com.ph editors.