A Money Coach in Canada

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One of my clients is in an interesting position. His job is costing him money. Quite a bit, actually. He’s in the entertainment industry, and part of what goes along with that culture is attending a lot of parties (some of which require bringing a gift), and a lot of post-wrap events over beer. You get the idea.

Being in the loop is part of his professional currency, so opting out is not really possible. Yet, he’s not high up enough to get a fat expense account. So a lot comes out of his personal bank account.

We’ve come up with ways to minimize the damage (avoid situations where he usually ends up buying a round, using cash to put a limit on what can become an endless night, pulling back a little but not entirely, etc.)

But it’s a tough one.

Readers: Anyone else out there whose job requires you to fork over money of your own, in order to facilitate your professional success? How do you handle it?


Photo credit: emdot. Creative Commons Attribution License

About the Author

Imagine if Canadians were known for being all over their money. Engaged. Proactive. Getting out of debt. Savvy. Saving. Generous. Nancy wants to help. Nancy started her own journey with money over 15 years ago, and formed her company “Your Money by Design” in 2004 to help others along the same path. It’s not the usual financial advising/investment stuff. It’s about taking control of day-to-day finances –managing monthly cashflow effectively, spending appropriately, getting out of debt, saving. If you're ready to take control over your finances, pop by her business site, YourMoneybyDesign.com


  1. Traciatim

    My significant other has a job that doesn’t even pay enough to cover her babysitting while she’s out of the house . . . she just refuses to stay home and spends all my money instead, does that count?


    Mar 15, 2008
  2. I assume from what you’ve described that your client sees it as investing in his future potential to earn a lot more money? If so, it sounds like any business venture where you first have to make money to earn money but there also has to be limits. If I was in your client’s position, I would set a time limit for cost recovery (i.e. where a real jump in income could justify the cost of being in that position). No one would want to go on like he is indefinitely. Otherwise, it’s not employment and self-sufficiency: it’s a subsidized hobby that won’t ever bring true financial returns. Me, I’d find another career.


    Mar 15, 2008
  3. Angela

    I teach childrens programs and one of the things I do is peacock feather balancing. The children often end up damaging the feathers and I’ve recently decided to put my prices up to factor in the cost of replacement feathers. So maybe your client could factor in the cost of this type of entertainment into the business fee he charges for his services? I kept my childrens programs fee lowish (as I’m just starting out) but am realising that, bottom line, taking money out of my bank account is not the way to run a successful business (see Melissa’s comments here!). It’s tough. I guess it depends how competitive the market is that your client is in.


    Mar 16, 2008
  4. @traciatim – I’m not touchin’ that one, lol!
    @Melissa – you taught this old money coach a new trick. I’m having a d’oh moment, that I didn’t think of something as clear-headed as setting a deadline on a ‘cost recovery’. Feel free to send me an invoice 😉
    @Angela – this client is working as an employee, so can’t increase his costs the direct way that you and I can. Your business sounds delightful. If you have a blog/website, I’m happy to link to it in a future post, in some way or other.


    Mar 16, 2008
  5. My current job isn’t to bad in this respect but I’m job hunting and that is very expensive… I’ve been purchasing “new” clothes used on places like Ebay where you can find quality name brands to interview in and I’m consolidating sky miles to finance a trip to a hiring conference back East.




    Mar 16, 2008
  6. My mother buys extra art supplies and resource books and posters and the like for her students all the time. She teaches 10 year olds … at a very exclusive, expensive school.


    Mar 17, 2008
  7. I am in sales in the commercial/Industrial supply world, and I do not get an expense account. Some ways around it, Is I will give out free samples of product once in a while, or I simply buy tim hortons for clients, or doughnuts for the shop people. I just try to stay frugal, after all its the thought that counts, and not all the time of What your trying to kiss butt with.
    But if you are spending money at your job, it is a write off. So that should count for something,

    I maybe spend 1% of what I net. Nothing big, but if I was spending more than 30% I think I would be looking for another job. JMHO


    Mar 23, 2008

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