Financial Discipline

One of the issues that HRMs grapple with on a daily basis are employees with poor financial planning skills.

Over the period of my practise, I have met great planners and some of the worst. There are those employees who always have ‘financial emergencies’ monthly. Sometimes even twice a month. They are the kind that receive their salaries today and two days later, you find an advance request letter on your desk.

The problem with this advance requests habit is that each time you get a salary advance (which is supposed to be recovered from your salary in one installment), it already interferes with how much you will receive at the end of the month. It is highly likely that you will request for another advance the following month.

Having grown up with Accountants in my family, I received a crash program on financial accounting and discipline as I literally had to account for every coin I received. Infact, in order to get any money, you needed to explain it’s use first. I therefore decided to ‘free myself from this bondage’ by earning my money so I could spend however I chose.

The key lesson in financial discipline however is learning to live within your means. When you depend on your Kshs. 50,000 salary to pay your Kshs. 25,000 rental house, take care of household and miscellaneous expenses, entertain your long list of lovers, drink at the bar daily, you will always be broke. It doesn’t make economic sense.

It’s important to have a list of your expenditure monthly, before you even receive your salary. This will help you to budget the money accordingly. To the ladies,it is important to learn to tilt your neck repeatedly from left to right each time you see that nice pair of shoe that you are about to purchase with money you don’t have. Impulse buying is very dangerous. This however doesn’t stop you from indulging yourself once in a while. This life hard and it doesn’t hurt to thank yourself for all the hard work and endurance.

There are those once in a while cases where an employee can approach the employer for an advance and financial assistance. It however doesn’t need to be a habit. When it’s a habit, some employees consider it an entitlement or right and this complicate matters. On that note therefore, I highly recommend that we learn to live within our means.


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