I'm financially stuck, In that situation how should I approach my manager(most probably this is the one time approach and hope it will never happen to me again), it's really hard for me to ask my salary in advance. What is the professional way to ask for financial help?
closed as unclear what you're asking by CMW, jcmeloni, Monica Cellio♦, Jim G., Rhys Mar 11 '14 at 8:30
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It's not your manager's job, or your company's job, to sort out your finances. You are responsible for them. However rarely the company might agree to help you with financial difficulty. This is really only likely in urgent or critical circumstances, like an unexpected serious illness. The company might then make an advance on your wages. But that's not guaranteed, and it's certainly never going to happen more than once. Approach HR, not your manager.
The thing that worries me in this question is the word "sometimes". It usually implies something that happens unusually but repeatedly. If you are repeatedly in financial difficulty you need to sort it out so that you are not.
A larger company sometimes has employee counselling services, which can include financial counselling. If they do, then take advantage of them.
Under no circumstances ever ask your manager to lend you money personally. It's a conflict of interest for both of you, and even asking might bring you problems.
As an employer, I would say off the bat that you are asking the wrong person.
It would be different if the financial issues stemmed from your employment (large petty cash payments, travel etc) but I don't think that that is the case from your question.
If you are having trouble managing your (short-term) personal finances you need to talk to your banker, not your employer. You may need an overdraft or personal loan.
If you are having trouble over the long term then you are living beyond your means. In that case you need to:
- Ask for a raise
- Get a higher paying job
- Spend less.
Another reason not to ask your company for an advance is that companies do not like employees who are in financial trouble. They are the ones who tend to a greater risk for stealing from the company. Asking for an advance for anything less than my child just got diagnosed with cancer is a huge risk that you will be put on the list of employees to get rid of at the first opportunity.
This is also a reason to get your act together as it will be much harder to get another job if you have financial problems.
What is the right way to ask for my salary in advance?
Assuming you've determined that your employer is the best resource you have to resolve your situation, and that it's appropriate to do so given your position and culture, there's no harm in asking in whatever way you feel comfortable.
However, your success will depend in part in how you ask, so here are some suggestions:
- State the amount you need in advance. Don't ask for the full paycheck in advance, only what you need.
- Explain that this is a one-time only situation, and without explaining the details of your personal problem, express that you're doing this only because you have already exhausted all your other avenues of support.
- Describe how you'll deal with the lack of paycheck, or reduced paycheck, when the next pay period comes - this way they know you aren't going to be back asking for a continuous advance, that you will "pay" it back immediately by working, knowing you've already received payment.
- Through your conversation, assure them that you'll be sticking around and working without outright stating it. Expressing your love for this job, that you are glad to come to work, that you have family and obligations that will keep you in the area may assure them that you won't quit as soon as they hand you the check.
- Hopefully you've worked with them without problem for years already, and this is the first time you've come to them for help. If you haven't worked for them for long, or you have already received help from them, this will be much more difficult.
- If you have paid vacation days they may be willing to "pay out" some of those days so your regular paychecks don't stop or become reduced.
- Be reasonable. If they only cut checks once a week on Friday, asking them for a pay advance on Monday for a bill due Tuesday isn't going to happen, and becoming angry when they offer you an advance, but refuse to give it to you in cash or immediately will not help you. Sometimes you can get a letter from them indicating the plan which you can take to the person you owe money to, and convince them to extend your due date based on the promised early payment of your paycheck. It's difficult, but you're already asking for a payment advance, it's not much more work to ask for a billing delay without penalty.
Critically, I think it's important to focus on the fact that this is an emergency, it's a one-time situation, that it's a smaller amount than your full paycheck, and you have plans to avoid this situation in the future.
In general I don't suggest an appeal to their humanity, by describing the terrible situation you have fallen into. A short explanation saying that it's an emergency should be enough to help them make their decision, without forcing them to feel like a monster for refusing you. You don't want to make your employment situation bad. Make sure they understand that while you need this help, if they refuse it won't alter your work or working relationship.