I work for a small company consisting of 5 to 10 employees including project manager. Every morning, as a team we conduct a standup meeting to discuss the daily agenda that sometimes include informal discussions (problem part) either before or after of the technical or work discussion.


Most of the time team lead or project manager start a discussion about social interactions and relationships (things going outside the office in personal lives) which is pretty normal for me if it does not get to the personal life but it usually ends up in personal issues of each employee asking them their personal preferences or relationships which make me uncomfortable.

Some personal questions are like this.

  • Do you have a girlfriend?
  • Have you been on a date on the past weekend?
  • When will you get married?
  • What will you do this weekend?

What I want to know

  • How to tell them not to ask me such annoying questions?
  • How can I avoid such questions?
  • What are best possible answers to such questions that will make them realize I am not the one to ask such questions?

P.S: The company is small so such informal discussions are mostly happening in the office.

  • How do you usually answer them? Have you told them before that you don't like discussing your personal life?
    – Erik
    Jul 5 '18 at 12:17
  • Yes, I have pointed it out many times that I don't like being asked nosy questions about my life but this happens again and again, and when they ask me such questions I usually don't answer and keep quiet.
    – Ahsan
    Jul 5 '18 at 12:20
  • 4
    Apparently, there has been a similar question already asked about the questions you mentioned in the list.
    – A J
    Jul 5 '18 at 12:21
  • From the personal questions you have given as an example, are they just asking for the sake of small-talk? Or does there seem to be a motive for their questions? For example, do you suspect they'd follow "Got a girlfriend?" with "I could set you up with my friend if you want."
    – user8671
    Jul 5 '18 at 13:26

You have said that you do not like nosy questions, especially about your personal life. To get over these feelings here is what to do:

Ask yourself why they are asking such questions. Is it because you have offered no information on your personal circumstances, and is it possible that they are just trying to get to know you better.

Think about what you are trying to hide from them. Identify the reasons. If you have reasons why you are keeping information from them - think about what those reasons are and whether they actually matter.

Prepare a list of nosy questions and decide beforehand what your answers will be. The answers should keep you in a social situation - not unsociable answers.

Try to stop these questions from mattering to you - have no regard for them either way. They are only questions, but you should work on giving something back to those interested enough in you to ask them. So really find out why you are holding back answering the small talk with small replies.

Finally you could think about answering a question with another question - bouncing back upon the really nosy questions.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.