“How much money do you make?” This question use to be a major taboo! To older generations, salary information was deeply private and asking someone to share salary information was highly offensive. Fast forward several decades, and many millennials have chosen to disregard this unspoken rule. As a whole, millennials are far more open about their lives – voicing their opinions and detailing personal experiences. Although being honest and open may appear appropriate, this trend can have negative repercussions. When you share personal facts about yourself, you are choosing to give valuable parts of your privacy to someone else.
Money is a topic that is near and dear to everyone’s hearts. Sharing financial advice and salary negotiation tips is completely fine, but when you divulge your salary, you are giving up much more than just a number. Yes, there are benefits in choosing to share salary information – addressing wage discrimination and the gender wage gap to name a few. But I believe there are more cons to this situation than pros. Whether you are tempted to disclose your earnings to a family member, co-worker, or friend, here are some reasons you should NOT reveal this information.
Success and money are two commodities that most people seek after. But when you have them and your friend does not, jealousy is often the resulting outcome. Are you prepared for the difficulty this may cause? Resentment leads to strained relationships and divided families. If you choose to reveal personal information, make sure that person has your best interest at heart and is supportive of you.
2.) Changing Perception
If you make more or less than your family and friends assumed, their perception of you may change. You may find them asking for more hand-outs or questioning your recent financial decisions. “Why did you buy that new car?” “You should ask for a raise!” “You are loaded! Dinner is on you tonight!” People will start associating your identity with your income.
3.) Boastful Appearance
“Well, doesn’t he think he is so rich and important?!” If you disclose that you have a substantial salary, people may assume you are being proud and arrogant. Even if this is completely false, success has a way of making you look better than you did before.
4.) Financial Dependency
You may hear a family member joke, “Well, it looks like I can retire early! You’ll take care of me!” You may notice an increase in people telling you their financial needs or asking for hand-outs. With prosperity comes an expectation from others.
5.) Resentful Co-Workers
If a co-worker finds out they are earning less than you, they may start resenting you. Even if your work performance is superior to theirs, they will resent that you receive more pay for the same job title. They will voice their concerns to management and request equal pay; or they will become resentful of you and your financial advantage.
When you share salary information, it can never be unshared. Even if you trust the individual you are sharing it with, you no longer have sole control over who finds out your financial situation. Think carefully before making this choice – it is always better to be safe than sorry.
If you have any questions about this article, just let us know in the comment section below! We’d be happy to help you out!