During a talk on Thursday, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella told a predominantly female audience that women should simply have “faith in the system” and not directly ask for raises. “It’s not really about asking for a raise, but knowing and having faith that the system will give you the right raise,” Nadella told the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing. Faith in the system, according to Nadella, is a kind of superpower. “That might be one of the initial ‘super powers,’ that quite frankly, women [who] don’t ask for a raise have,” Nadella said while speaking to Maria Klawe, a member of Microsoft’s Board of Directors, president of Harvey Mudd College, and a computer scientist. “It’s good karma. It will come back.” In a tweet posted later on Thursday, Nadella admitted he had been "inarticulate" about how women should ask for raises. "Our industry must close gender pay gap so a raise is not needed because of a bias," he wrote. Only 29 percent of the general Microsoft workforce is female, according to workplace diversity data the company released last week.
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