The romantic relationship in the workplace can lead to long-term relationships – and even marriage – but they can also lead to situations unpleasant for those involved and their colleagues.
In the worst case, the intertwining of business and pleasure could lead to a dismissalif for example the company’s policies provide for it, or it could be a reason for the resignation of one of the partners if the relationship turns out to be a “bad love relationship”.
Relationships and work
However, we know that romantic relationships in work are very common. (Just ask Bill and Melinda Gates, who met at work). Given the amount of time people spend at work, it’s no surprise that they can develop crushes or fall lover. In fact, most adults spend at least 1,680 hours a year in the office, so they’re very likely to spend more time with their colleagues than the others. Even if you don’t choose your co-workers, chances are you have common interests. Moreover, by working daily with someone you can see how they react to a problem, how they act under pressure and how they interact with other colleagues. It is also easier for colleagues to share personal information, difficulties encountered at the office, problems in the family, etc. maybe during a lunch or a drink after work.
A study reports that 74% of French employees aged 25 to 34 said they had had a relationship with a colleague. Most of them would also have said that they would be ready to do it again, even though they are aware of the impact on their work.
Proximity can change your limits
Although there are many pression, having a relationship in the workplace is relatively simple. However, things don’t always go as planned; for example, one partner may be more involved than the other.
Spend more time together tendency to break down defenses between people more quickly, and this does not necessarily lead to intimacy romantic. If both partners are not careful to continually re-establish boundaries to keep their relationship within a certain framework, these mistakes can lead one of them to begin to view the partnership as something more than just a relation of work.
In other words, it is important to be clear about your Limits and to understand what you really want from a working relationship: are you just friends or is there something more? Sometimes the lines can blur and it becomes difficult to clarify the Limitsbut it is better to think carefully before something happens that you will regret later.
And coworker can easily start feeling like the most important person in your life. However, it is important to recognize the difference between feeling a certain closeness to someone because of the situation where you find yourself (working together, for example) or understanding that you have fallen in love.
Relations at work: here are 6 tips.
Here are some tips if your relationship involves a colleague:
1. Check company policies on labor relations
Before starting a relationship with a co-worker (or as soon as possible after the start), take a look at the company’s policies regarding co-worker relationships. Many companies, big or small, have strict rules against relationships developing between co-workers. If it’s against the rules, you have to ask yourself, « Is it really worth it? » »
If, on the other hand, relationships are allowed, try to remain discreet and ready for all the consequences. Also, depending on the company, the human resources department may need you to sign a contract, brief managers or co-workers, or follow other established guidelines or rules.
2. Be very, very sure!
Before getting into a relationship, make sure it’s « real love. » Are you working on an important project that keeps you at work late into the evening, your frustration finds support from a boss/colleague, you have a relationship that extends beyond office hours, etc.? Make sure you know the answers to these kinds of questions before you start a romantic relationship with someone in your office.
3. Maintain your professionalism
Don’t let a romantic relationship affect the quality and efficiency of your work. You don’t have to keep your relationship a secret, but you don’t have to show it in a way that makes your co-workers uncomfortable.
Consider the fact that your colleagues may be on the lookout for your mistakes. You would never want a colleague to think, « Giovanna is okay with Claudio’s plan just because they’re dating. » » Avoid sitting side by side in meetings, having lunch together every day, or generally acting as a couple. Also, don’t send personal messages using your work email or company chat.
4. Avoid dating someone who is higher or lower than you
Politics and office hierarchy should come first, especially when it comes to office romances. Choosing to have a relationship with a colleague, especially at a different seniority level, could have a significant impact on growth prospects within the company. In fact, office relationships are particularly problematic if one associate manages or supervises the other. The best solution is to avoid dating people you work with regularly.
4. Save the romance for when you’re out of the office
No matter how in love you are, there should be no public displays of affection at work. You must maintain the same professional behavior that you have with other colleagues. This means not holding hands, kissing, or using affectionate nicknames to call each other in public.
5. Problems are solved after work
Never argue at work. Any personal disagreements should be settled outside of the office.
6. Plan for the worst
7. Agree early in the relationship how you will handle a potential breakup. Avoid a traumatic breakup if possible. It’s not just you who are involved, but the whole office and company policy on this is at stake.
Conclusion on love at work
When having romantic relationships in the workplace, it’s best to always weigh the pros and cons first. If it is true that on the one hand you can find the love of your life, at the same time you can on the contrary lose the best job you have ever had. Sure, your relationship will change the dynamics within the work environment, but are you really prepared to deal with possible reduced performance at work, co-worker gossip, and possible legal issues?
It is important to think carefully about your actions before they become irreversible, to weigh the stakes and to evaluate in a more rational way what pushes you towards the other; only then will you be aware and better prepared for the consequences of your choices.
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