Friday, December 2, 2022

Let’s talk money

How to talk about money with your boss, friends, partner or kids

“Money is the root of all evil.” So they say.

Talking openly about money matters is something everyone should do as it directly influences your health, and your relationships. It is that vital chat that can make you feel from awkward to anxious, but trust me after it is done you will always feel a relieved.


How do you initiate a money chat in general?


  • Keep the group tight, only those directly involved should be present.
  • Always make sure you are in a comfortable setting. A table setting is usually perfect if you need files of documentation or writing space. Some refreshments to lighten the air would do fine too. 
  • Come well prepared with your points, so when speaking, you are able to discuss with clarity and concisely.
  • Listening is vital, make sure you listen attentively and then add your input.
  • At the end of the conversation, recap everyone’s input, and always end the conversation on a positive note, even if the final solution is still pending.


Whether it is splitting the bill with your friend group, having the talk with your child to form good financial habits from an early age or talking to your boss or collogues on money matters. 

Just broaching on the topic in the most ideal manner can save a lot of heartache.


Talking money with your partner —

It is always the case that one of the two will be better at managing money. Discuss money matters and how you will handle it as early on in the relationship as possible. This is imperative. If you are the lesser in this matter, give in gracefully. If you decide to combine finances, stay in tune for the big things like buying a house, or children’s’ education or health insurance or travel budgets. Don’t sweat the small stuff I say, learn to respect and trust each other and not get into the nitty- gritty of daily living once it is budgeted. 

Nothing is more annoying than someone scanning bills and checking for each item. 

Be wise and stay in the loop at all times, especially if you have a partner who may appear to be a squanderer, look out for alarm bells.


Talking money with children —

I believe that children need boundaries and actually are quietly happy when parents do set boundaries. Another important lesson learnt when raising children is that they learn much more from the “lead by example approach” versus lectures. So make sure you know how to behave and talk about money matters before they fly the nest. 

For example: 

– When shopping, make them call out price tags, get the best discounts available or even wait for the item to go on sale. 

– Saving as little as ten rupees a month from their pocket money, will ensure that the saving habit is inculcated in them very early in life. 

– As also with giving back, every month a small amount to charity also paves a path for life long giving. 

It is important to share your experiences on money matters, especially on how you got duped, how to be aware of fraudsters, or borrowers who will not return. Form their financial habits early.


Talking money with your family and friends —

Fallouts over money with family or friends has been around since evolution. That is why it is ever so important to be absolutely honest in money dealings from the word go. Be it the smallest of transactions, 

– Always keep it in writing with signatures. 

– Always talk openly about your financial ability, there is no need to keep up with the joneses and you will always be respected for that.

– Always set rules when socializing or travelling together, on how to split costs, tipping etiquette, alcohol budgets.

True friends will choose your friendship over money. 


Talking money at work with colleagues or your boss —

Discussing money with your employer or your colleagues does indeed improve the workplace culture and the employees’ wellbeing, it motivates people to learn from others about wise investing and improve their financial situation too. That said it is proven that only 3% of people are willing to share their financial status, burdens or difficult money situations at work for fear of judgment and the embarrassment. We spend eight of our waking hours at our workplace, so getting tips from colleagues through their experiences on how to invest, save or get out of debt should be an area you should consider diving into. It’s only the initial awkwardness that you will have to deal with. Make it a priority.


Talking money with your financial advisors, bankers —

This bracket of people should be first on your list when you are encountering a financial problem. They have a plethora of options readymade to help and support you. Sooner rather than later, get in touch with your professional advisors and have open, honest conversations.


Conclusion — So don’t let the idea of having money conversations stress you out or make you embarrassed when talking about it because it will improve your financial wellbeing, and you will make better and less risky financial decisions, have stronger personal relationships and feel more in control of your life. Whatever your situation, if you are well prepared, you will be able to tackle any potentially tricky situation.

Its always a good time to start talking about money. 

Approach money conversations.

Grasp the nettle.


Vinita Alvares Fernandes
Vinita Alvares Fernandes is an Economics graduate, a writer and a Trinity College certified public speaker and communicator

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