Friday was a great example of good karma, created by me, myself and I. The comments by Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft had just started reverberating across the airwaves as the first hour of "Morning Joe" got underway.
"Mika – the people at Microsoft need you to go talk to them – HELP them!," said my co-host Joe Scarborough, mockingly.
I am sure you have heard the since-recanted comments by now:
It’s not really about asking for a raise, but knowing and having faith that the system will give you the right raise. That might be one of the initial ‘super powers,’ that quite frankly, women (who) don’t ask for a raise have … It’s good karma. It will come back.
SAID NO WOMAN IN AMERICA!!!!!!!!
I wrote the best-selling book, "Knowing Your Value," to advise women on what NOT to do, and Nadella's comments would be at the very top of the list of methods to avoid. Countless women told me stories of how they wasted decades of their careers, languishing while they would work hard and just hope it would be noticed. Valerie Jarrett recounts how she was advised to cut that out and how it was the best pep talk she's ever gotten.
On Friday, as I told that story on "Morning Joe,” my blood pressure started to go up and mid-read, I decided to prove him wrong. The show went off the air at 9 a.m. Eastern time. By 9:02 a.m., I was three floors down in the main newsroom of the NBC News Washington bureau. I headed right up to Vicky Blooston who runs the news desk there and told her I expected to be used during the day on MSNBC regarding this story. The reason: I was a valuable expert. I had written a book on the topic. Women have gotten raises because of the book. My network and its viewers could benefit from my expertise. I didn't stop there. I haven't been on Nightly News in years, and it was at least since the last election that I had appeared on Hardball, and that was with my co-host Joe on politics.
I pitched aggressively, with a dead serious look in my eye. There was no time for niceties, no time to warm anyone up, because these decisions were being made now, this minute.
By noon, I was at the White House for a meeting on equal pay that was already scheduled. It fit perfectly with my first live shot on MSNBC dayside on the topic. Nightly News agreed I was a good choice, too, so as soon as I finished on the North Lawn, I rushed back to the bureau to do a sit-down interview for Ann Thompson's piece. And Hardball producers heard what I had to say, too, because next on tap was to be the headline guest on Chris' show for the top six minutes.
None of this would have happened if I hadn't pushed. Advocated for myself. Touted wildly my own expertise.
Women still come up to me on the street saying they read "Knowing Your Value" and got a raise from the advice. I am going to advocate for myself again and say, take my advice, not Satya Nadella's.
Why am I still discussing it today, even after he recanted?
Because this was one retraction I simply cannot buy.
You can't recant a mindset. You can't change a culture with an apology. His comments were mind-numbingly backwards and time and time again, there is proof it does not work. Just look at my day Friday. Let’s look at every day as a chance at Karma ... proving the "Karma guy" wrong.