Most successful men spend the better part of their day working. However, that doesn’t mean they enjoy talking about their occupation when getting to know you. In fact, It’s Just Lunch surveys consistently show that men would prefer not to discuss work on a first date. If work comes up, men watch for signs that it’s their personality, not their profession, that is sparking your interest.
“I love what I do. And with the right person at the right time, I love talking about it,” says Jeff, a Dallas physician.
For Jeff, a first date is not the right time. But just because a woman asks about it does not make her the wrong person. It’s what she says and does afterward that matters to him. “I have had a few dates where things might have gone differently to assure me those women were interested in me and not my job title or earning potential,” Jeff says.
Acting impressed simply because Jeff is a doctor puts him on guard. “You can’t know on a first date that what I do is admirable,” he points out.
Finding out what Jeff does and then asking no questions feels as wrong to him as asking inappropriate things like how much he makes.
Clumsy: “So, you’re a doctor!”
Better: “So, you survived the rigors of med school. How did you decide on your specialty?”
The latter question suggests there’s more to Jeff than his title and provides an opportunity to find out what makes him tick.
Chris, a mechanical engineer, finds it “completely natural” to talk about his occupation on a first date. “It seems rather odd to me to not discuss what you spend most of your day doing when you’re specifically trying to get to know someone,” he says, “but I do understand why some men would have reservations.”
His advice: “Don’t ever talk about work right off the bat. Connect over something besides work first. Come prepared to talk about things you like and see what the guy picks up on. Share things that are representative of you as a person, such as a favorite vacation, a concert you went to, a book you’re reading.”
Asking what a guy did over the weekend, Chris concludes, probably will reveal more on a first date than what he does for a living.