We have all been, more or less, at the center of these situations. If you thought it was awkward to bump into an ex then how weird does it feel when the situation revolves around your money? Most of the time, you are torn between how to put down the other person without offending them and making up an excuse to just flee the scene. Here is a list of awkward money situations and how to get out of them.
- Splitting the check
You go out with a friend and end up eating far less than he or she did. At the end of the meal, they ask you if you want to split the check. In your mind, you know that if you paid for what you ate, your wallet would not be lighter as it would get if you split. If it is a friend that you will not see again for a long time, split the bill and avoid the uncomfortable exchange. Do the same for a larger table, because you do not want to come off looking cheap. If you are still in college and out with friends, then never hesitate to just pay for what you ate. Chances are, your friends are doing the same as well.
- Asking about salary
A lot of people will still consider it extremely personal when asked about how much they earn. Truth be told, we have all faced this situation when we started working. The best way to answer this question is simply by dismissing it with humour and vagueness, such as: “When I started, it seemed like a lot, but my bank account would say otherwise”, “I did not know how cheap I was”.
- Lending money
Most experts will tell you that you should never lend money to friends or family, and the same would apply to you if you are the borrower. Relationships tend to break off when the payment is not made and there is not much you can say after a certain point if they do not want to pay you back. The best way to tackle these situations is to ask the borrower what they need the money for. If it is to buy a gift or pay bills, offer to pay half of it. Tell them that it is not needed for them to pay you back their half if they cannot.
- Keep things professional
Always keep your professional and personal life separate no matter what the circumstances are. If your friend offers you their services to assist you in something at a discounted price, it is best to not go for it. Why? There is a very high chance that their performance in the task is not up to your standards of expectation and asking them to do it again becomes an awkward conversation, as the job was done at a discounted price. The best way to avoid these situations completely is to tell your friend that your superiors have already picked someone and you have no say in it anymore, the people on your team unanimously voted for another company’s services. If you cannot say no, then be very clear and concise about what you need them to do and how it should be done. Discuss things in detail as well as write them down if possible.
Money conversations are never comfortable for the person being questioned. We can all relate to these situations in one way or the other. If nothing works, then at the end of the day you just have to be honest, but try not to offend the person in the process.