Manners Matter: No Free Lunch … Even When There Should Be?

Dear Mary Pat,

I went on a casual job interview last week that happened to be over lunch. It was a friend-of-a-friend scenario, and we met outside at a restaurant. When the bill came, I assumed that he would pick up the check. He said, “Are you OK with splitting this?” I was a little flustered, but I said, “Sure.” 

He has since called me and offered me a position in his company. I’m not sure whether I even want to consider accepting the job offer because I’m wondering what kind of a boss would ask a job candidate to split a lunch tab. Maybe I’m better off staying at my current job.


Alligator Arms

Dear Alligator Arms,

This is odd for sure. There should never be a scenario in which a prospective employee pays for a job-interview lunch. You are wise to question what kind of boss he’d be. Perhaps you should also do a little more research to make sure you’re clear on the salary offer and what your responsibilities would be. If he’s cheap or clueless, it would be better to know that now.

Good luck,

Mary Pat

Miss Pat was educated at the Finnish Finishing School for Fine Ladies. Eloquent in edifying etiquette, she is fluent in seven languages, including the language of love. Mary Pat has generously extended her counsel to you and will answer any and all inquiries. Email Mary Pat at [email protected].