My Salary Journey | This Lawyer in London Went From £50k to 4x that Salary in 5 years.

Money

My Salary Journey | This Lawyer in London Went From £50k to 4x that Salary in 5 years.

Salary Journey Lawyer in London

My salary journey started before I left university. My first job was during industrial training at the university in Nigeria. I worked for 6 weeks and got N60,000 (currently less tan £100). I thought this was a lot back in 2014! After that I didn’t really do much. I went back to the university and focused on schoolwork.

First Real Job – £50,000

I got my first ‘real’ job after University and moved to London. This was £50,000 in 2016. This was fixed. I was just happy to have one, so I didn’t consider negotiating. And it was a grad program as well, so everyone earned the same.

Savings, Extras and Expenses

I saved a bit, but living in London is expensive and tax was close to 40%! Pension was deducted at source. Didn’t think about adding extra contributions at the time, but definitely considering that now.

The Journey

It was a standard grad program progression, each year we got a raise. It was only after leaving my first job I realised I was actually being underpaid. Journey looked like this £50k -> £55k -> £60k -> 85k -> £100k -> and now close to 4x of my first salary. All excluding bonuses. I didn’t negotiate until I had an interview and they offered multiples of my old salary! I was shook, but I learnt my lesson there and then.

Learnings and Lessons

Definitely ask, ask, ask. Ask people in your peer group, figure out what the band is. When you get to those meetings, definitely speak out if you’re unhappy. If you don’t complain, unfortunately people will assume you are content.

Advice

I think it’s beneficial to have conversations like this very early on, figure out what most people are earning, etc… It helps with negotiating. Knowledge is power. Most employers don’t want people to talk about it this, cause it’s in their interest.


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