The Saturday Weekend Review #48: How your name could affect your salary


Just when you thought your education and experience was priority when looking for a job it might not be the only thing that will get you the salary success you deserve.

I thought I had heard it all when it came to salary and career choices but now it might be your name that is holding you back from scoring an awesome pay cheque to go along with your career choice.

I’ll be honest and say that I just love reading articles that explain why things happen the way they do and then a light bulb goes off and I realize I’ve been doing something wrong all along.

Who knew that if you had a shorter name that your chances of scoring a higher salary were much better than using your full name, depending on what field you are in.

If you have a nickname which is reasonably professional don’t be shy to use it while at work from the start because that might be your golden ticket to a salary you might not want to turn away from. That is if you believe it will help you.

I was captured instantly by the title when I read this article written by Alison Griswold of Business Insider about how people who use a nickname at work earn a bigger salary and to be honest maybe it does ring true but I also think that it all depends on many factors. It was at that moment I started to think about all of the people I work with and have previously worked with and started running names in my head.

I agree that you are building your brand when you start a new job and it’s imperative from the moment you walk through the door to treat yourself like your own business. It’s no different from treating your personal finances as a business because you are the star of the show and if using Chip instead of Charles or Christopher gets you $3600 more per year then heck go for it.

The statistics in the article “On a first name basis with success? Your mom chose your name wisely” from an American job matching site called The Ladders did a study that suggests that for every extra letter in your name correlates to a drop in salary by $3600 mounting up to over $150,000 over a career life time. Imagine what you could do with that extra cash.. pay off your mortgage, buy a second home, a cottage, fund your children’s education.

The top 25 most-popular names make about $7,000 more, on average, than the rest of the list – The Ladders

My name is not too long but I do have a nick name and my name has been shortened all my life and no it’s not Mr.CBB, Bob, Bill, Tom, |Rob or Marc and less than 4 letters which apparently is what the top earning men have in a name. I don’t know if it has had any effect on my salary however in my career I must use my full name given to me by my parents although many of my colleagues use my nick name.

I’m hoping my years of experience, education and certification come before how many letters are in my name but I’ve heard of stranger things. The last thing we need is to discourage students from going into a career choice because their name is too long or thinking they need to shorten their name just to get hired or even promoted in a role. I’m pretty sure that anyone in Human Resources will tell you that is not the case when it comes to the hiring process nor will it ever be. Maybe it’s just a coincidence, who knows.

My wife also has a long name but uses a shortened version of her name. It was interesting to see what female names were ranked as top paying females such as Cathy, Lynn, Melissa and Dana with Christine taking the top spot.

I know of some females in senior level roles with those names and who knows maybe it’s true but I’m going to go out on a limb and say it’s a small percentage , if at all of why someone would get a job. Who knows maybe new job requirements might entail having a short name  and if you have a happy nick name like Sunny  or Blue even better.

Maybe I’m thinking far outside the box on this one but I really could care less what someone’s name is as long as they get the job done right.

So if you have a baby on the way you might want to consider what you will name your child and how it might affect their salary in the years to come, that is if you believe this is truly going to make a difference. Although this was an American study I still found it fascinating that we would go as far to talk salaries with the length and popularity of a name.

What next?

What are your thoughts on this topic?

Do higher level employees in your career have shorter names or nick names? What about you?


Canadian Budget Binder this week


CBB at home and the blog

Like most people the Christmas countdown has begun and although our Christmas lights are up we are preparing for the yearly bake-off in the kitchen making all of our holiday treats. We will be heading out to gatherings as the invitations come in and getting happy, happy with lots of cheer with our family and friends. We don’t have many gifts to buy so there is no real pressure on us to get out and shop, not even for Black Friday.

I’ve managed to get the snow tires on and the winter vehicle on the road and all I have left to do is get the rust proofing done next week and we are officially ready for winter. I’m still trying to convince my parents to come visit Canada in the winter but they don’t seem to want to experience what everyone who comes to Canada should and that is the vast amounts of snow and how cold it gets here.

They would rather jet off on vacation to somewhere warm and to be honest I don’t blame them. When we retire we would love to do the same thing taking turns visiting all the hot spots around the world in exchange for a chilly Canadian winter.

Next week if you don’t already know I am on the road again for work at another facility so I’ll be checking in and out all week. I’m working hard at reading and commenting on all of my favourite personal finance blogs but if I don’t make it around don’t be offended I’m just on the road with work and I’m still reading.

I’m looking for my next “Make a Difference” personal finance blog to feature and if you believe your blog should be recognized and shared with my fans then send me an email so I can add you to the line-up.

Lastly, if you are a personal finance blogger and want to guest post shoot me an email as I’m open to ideas and would love to hear what you have to say to my fans. Other than that, I’m busy packing today and getting ready for my departure so I hope you all enjoy your week and please do pop around to read the line-up of posts that I have for you.

Have a great week.



Fan deals of the week


Submit your Brag

If you have a brag that you want me to share email me at canadianbudgetbinder (@) [yahoo] [.ca] by Friday each week to have your brag considered for the Saturday post

A big thanks to Samantha a CBB fan who couldn’t wait to share this deal of the week with all of us.




I had placed an ad on a local website classifieds to purchase a mattress changing pad for my home daycare.

This really nice lady emailed me and said she had a brand new one, came with her son’s crib, and that I could have it for FREE.

I go through a lot of them as I wipe down between each diaper change and they crack easily so I was super appreciative to get one for free as they run $20-$30 brand new!


Making a difference




Note: If you follow me here at Canadian Budget Binder and want your blog featured because you are making a difference, please contact me today at canadianbudgetbinder (@) yahoo dot (ca).


Greetings Canadian Blog Lovers!

I’m Stephen, the guy behind, a site that is dedicated to one thing and one thing only: helping you save money on everything you buy and do without cutting back.

The idea for first hit me all the way back in 2006 or 2007 when I was an avid participant and reader of the forums as well as a regular reader of Million Dollar Journey, one of the earliest Canadian personal finance blogs out there.

What I realized way back then was that there was tons of gold nuggets of information floating around on the internet about saving money but it was all hidden deep inside one hundred page forum threads and in the dark corners of the web. That made the information almost completely inaccessible to the average overworked and busy Canadian and I wanted to change all that! 

So, I registered the domain in 2007 and then proceeded to take 3 years before launching the site in the summer of 2010. How’s that for slow?

After slowly curbing my perfectionism, I am now trying to produce one or two high quality posts every week that outline exactly how to save money on everyday things that people need and I’m looking to ramp that up to at least two or three times a week in 2014. 

In my own personal money-saving journey, I have likely saved hundreds of thousands of dollars by now which has translated into a much better lifestyle than my salary would normally afford.

That means more money to spend on the things that are important to me, regular travel around the world for next to nothing, and more money amassed in assets and in my bank account. I can help you accomplish the very same in much less time than it took me because I do most of the work for you and just let you enjoy the spoils. 

Also, if you haven’t heard yet, I’m giving away $1000 of my own money this Christmas to a few lucky readers so that doesn’t hurt either!


Blog post sharing


I really appreciate when other blog owners recognize my hard work at Canadian Budget Binder and share my posts with their fans or even mention my blog on their blog or website.

Here are the blogs that did just that this past week, so please head over and check them out. If I’m missing you it’s because I didn’t get a ping back so please send me an email and I’ll add you next Saturday.


Carnival Glory



Every week I get thousands of people visit Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog. Here are a few of my favorite searches that may have even brought you here and you’re reading this, right now.

  • I hope everyone has a great day– I hope everyone does as well… what a lovely search term to have landed on my site
  • How to spell $876.78- hmmm I guess there is no end to what people search
  • Men and cooking is sexy– I’m amazed at how many women love a man who cooks…. men get cooking if you know what’s good for you 😉
  • Why do people put Christmas lights up and not turn them on?- Why do people search why do people put Christmas lights up and not turn them on lol… I certainly could care less what my neighbour does. Maybe it’s the new way to conserve energy and save money on utilities while still enjoying the festive look.



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  1. I had a ton of nicknames growing up (each one was different depending on the family member or friend). I was thinking about an old co-worker of mine when I read this post. Her name was Nicole (we all “knew” her as Nicole) but all of her friends and family called her Nikki. Interestingly I remember her telling me that she used her full name at work because she wanted people to take her more seriously. I guess maybe she should have gone by Nikki according to the research.

  2. Thanks for featuring me this week Mr. CBB! I’ve never been one to have much of a shortened name. I go by Stephen or Steve everywhere. My salary has been decent, no complaints, but I wonder if a shorter name would have improved things. Interesting thought that I had never heard of before 🙂

  3. I think it might be one of my neighbours that did the search on the Christmas lights. Hubby insists on stringing a million lights every year and I rarely let him turn them on. LOL

  4. How about that…. My name is on the list as a money maker!! I wish… I’ve been called Chris all my life but not by family, and not by choice. My Dad’s name is Raymond but the only peopleI ever heard actually call him that were my grandparents. He’s Ray to the rest off he world. My Mom hated her given name and preferred the nickname thanks to her married name. She was Chip to most people. My maiden name was a fine English name….Chippendale. For the record I’ve heard all the jokes about the male dancers… No relation. Damn.

  5. Fascinating! What an interesting idea, Jon will do well with the short name logic, I wonder if the Christine logic transfers over to Krista since they’re derived from the same name? Who knows! Interesting all the same. I’m with you though, it’s an odd coincidence probably. Although my mother-in-law does say those children with longer more complicated names don’t get called on as often in the classroom and therefore don’t get as much attention – so maybe there’s a link there?

    1. I’ve heard that once before about having long names in the classroom but my same thoughts apply.. who knows.

  6. hmm….. ‘Doctor Avis’, ‘Senator Avis’ that must have been what my mom was thinking when she named me after a dear aunt. On the plus side it’s only 4 letters even though I get called Mavis and Ava a lot.

    1. I can see where you are coming from and I’m going to say my last name is very common but I do look British none the less lol.

  7. I read an article that you should always test out potential names by putting “Senator” or “Doctor” in front of it. If it sounds crazy, it is. There is a reason why there are so many Doctor Anne’s or Senator Williams out there!

    1. That’s interesting lol…. I’ve never heard that before and now I understand why Avis did that above in her comment haha….

  8. My short name was not on the list of top women’s names and, apparently would conform to the money/name theory on that basis. I am not a corporate success story but, then, I’ve never striven to be one. It’s simply not on my list of priorities. I’ve never striven to be a top earner. Instead, I’ve worked to do an awful lot with the things I have. 🙂

    I suspect that the real money maker behind this story is the person who was bright enough (or opportunistic enough) to write a research grant proposal that enabled them to get paid for researching such a silly theory!

    1. Ha ha… you said it Beth… I agree… we just seem to dig dig dig for things that really are of no relevance in my opinion instead of focusing on the real issues.

  9. Mary is only 4 letters but everyone in the workplace shortened it to Mar (pronounced Mare). Who knows if it helped? It’s just what was. Not sure I ever really appreciated being called some old “nag” though. LOL 🙂

  10. Anyone who has known me for a long time knows me as Trina but I prefer Katrina and introduce myself now as Katrina. Maybe I should go back to Trina and maybe I can be confident to ask for a raise! Lol.

      1. Some people do call me Kat…..funny enough I got my raise I have been waiting for not long after this was posted! 🙂

  11. Mr CBB… you seem to have a typo. The red underline on “how people who use a nickname at work earn a bigger salary” is showing up as a red strike through the entire phrase. 😀

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