Information is Power: Emily Clark

How do you describe yourself in one sentence?

“I'm a curious journalist who notices how weird and wonderful people are and makes a point to ask them about it.”

What's your job title & how did you get there?”

“Digital Journalist, Specialist Reporting Team, ABC News. I got here via a country education > a fortunate series of benders between university assessments > a tabloid TV gig > lots of travel > and a pivot to digital.”

What's the best piece of advice you've received re negotiating your salary & benefits?


“The first negotiation with a new employer is the most important one. Set a precedent that you are here to work, but also here to get paid. Let them know you will always come to the table expecting a pay rise because you will always deserve it.”

Do you ever talk about your salary with coworkers? Why or why not?

“Yes. This is something I've proactively done over recent years. I work for a big organization. There is money to go around so we should all get ours. Information is power.”

How do you prepare for pay rise, promotion or tough negotiation conversations?

“I step outside the established norms inside the workplace and look at the marketplace. What am I worth out there? Find examples and bring them to the table. Own your space in the room, be present and look people in the eye. Use language like "I'll have to think about it" if you're not satisfied. Buy yourself time. Remember, a good boss will respect you more if you hustle a pay rise like you hustle a story. And back yourself. Always.”

What would you tell your younger self about negotiating your first salary?

“Ask for more. Ask again three months later. Agree to KPIs only when your reward is measured too.”

Did you ever agree to something in a negotiation you now regret doing?

“So far, no. I came close when I agreed to a billable time percentage at a PR agency. Not because it was unfair, but because I was too young for that level of stress. Responsibility and authority have to be balanced.”