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Awkward Career Questions Relatives Will Ask During Chinese New Year

Wong Shu Lee  


  February 02, 2021

Chinese New Year is approaching. This year, though we’re unable to meet our relatives physically, with the help of technologies, we’re still unable to avoid elders practise their heavenly mandate to ask you awkward questions. 


But fret not! Today we’re going to share some tips on how to respond to these questions without feeling awkward and embarrassed, and hopefully have more meaningful conversations as a result. 




“Are you working? What do you do exactly?”


Once you graduated, you’re going to expect that all relatives you see once a year must ask you this question. As we know, the pandemic has affected the global employment rate. For those who have not secured a job yet, don’t be fear about this question. 


You May Answer: “I’m actively attending interviews now. Hope that I can share some good news with you after the Chinese New Year. 




“How much money are you making?”


Some relatives would continue to ask more awkward questions if they’re not satisfied with your responses for their “entry-level questions”. If you don’t feel comfortable disclosing the exact amount that you’re earning right now, try to divert their attention to topics that you’re interested in. 


You May Answer: “Enough for me to fund my hobby.” Then you can start to share your hobby. 




“Can you make much money in your industry?”


Our parents’ generation may only be familiar with professions like doctors, lawyers, engineers, and bankers. Therefore, when your occupation is not from the industries that they understand, they might start to doubt whether you can make ends meet. 


Don’t be offended by this question. Instead, let’s share with them why you chose your profession and industry, and why you love what you do. 




“Have you been promoted this year?”


If you do, this is the perfect opportunity to share your joy with them. Or else, you can share your aspirations moving forward into the new year. You can shift the conversation from promotions and pay-rises to developing new skills and achieving other more meaningful successes. 


You May Answer: “No wor aunty. But recently I’m taking an online course to learn a new skill. I think this is helpful for me to achieve promotion this year.” 




“Your cousin A is earning better than you. Why don’t you shift career and follow his/her path?”


Sometimes, relatives just like to compare you with your peers. Again, don’t be easily offended. Let’s celebrate the success of others but at the same time reinforce your aspirations! 


You May Answer: “Aiyo aunty, I’m happier doing what I’m doing now.” 


Although it’s awkward to be asked these questions, this is a form of love from the elders. Let’s take it as an opportunity to let them understand the younger generation better and educate them with the latest market trends. 


We hope you and your family have a warm and happy Chinese New Year. Let’s utilise the power of technologies to keep in touch with your family and relatives while helping the nation to stop the spread of the coronavirus. 


If you’re still in the midst of searching for jobs, do visit https://www.zom-in.com/opportunity.php to explore career opportunities! 


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