Nicki Minaj Thinks Women Should Be ‘Unapologetic’ About Demanding Equal Pay

Ask👏 for👏 what👏 you👏deserve.

Nicki Minaj is one of TIME Magazine's "100 Most Influential People" of 2016 (and one six cover stars). In an interview with the magazine, the Queen of Rap encouraged women to demand equal pay for their work. 

"One thing I learned along the way in business," she said, "is the necessity to be unapologetic about asking for how much money you deserve."

Minaj also said that she has always been adamant about making as much as the men in her field: 

At a very early stage in my rap career, I was making six figures for shows. If I heard there was another rapper making that, I thought, ‘you know what? I get out there and demand or command a crowd. I get out there and make my fans happy. I get out there and give a real show. I want that, too.’ And I pushed myself to be better with my showmanship, but I also decided, you know what? I want to be compensated well.

She alluded to a culture in which women sometimes feel as though they are not empowered to negotiate their salaries, and reinforced that there is nothing wrong with speaking up about money.

"I think women have the tendency to feel that they shouldn't ask to be compensated as much as a man doing the same exact thing," she told TIME. "If you know you're great at what you do, don't ever be ashamed to ask for the top dollar in your field."

This isn't the first time Minaj has spoken up about equal pay -- in a May 2015 interview with Cosmo, she encouraged women to talk about their salaries to make sure they know what others are earning.

"Women are uncomfortable talking about money," she said. "You have to ask questions. ‘What is this person getting?’ Do your research. I’ve always been pretty competitive in terms of my pay.” 

(Pro tip -- she has the same theory about orgasms. You should be having those equally, too.)

Check out the interview below, and pick up TIME's "100 Most Influential People" issue, out on May 2. 



Nicki Minaj Through the Years