Times are changing everywhere in the world and India is no exception. Youngsters are working hard, long and odd hours. They spend more time at the office than at home let alone social events. Consequently, there are a lot of single men and women who don`t have the time to meet new people. Naturally, they seek their potential partners within their surrounding environment — the office.
Single people feel that work is a natural place to meet new people. After all, people are spending at least 40 hours a week at the office, with individuals of similar backgrounds and interests. Relationships with co-workers can be very tempting.
There are many issues — both positive and negative — to consider before engaging in office romances. One of the positive aspects is time efficiency since you no longer need to search for a significant other in the evening. Why look around for potential dates when you are surrounded by beautiful women or handsome men? You save both time and money.
A second advantage of dating someone in the workplace is that since you spend so many hours together at work, you already have an idea of what he/she`s like. This can save you from lots of headaches down the road.
Office romances also have their drawbacks. For example, no matter how well the relationship is going, the situation itself is a recipe for disaster. The fact that couples are in constant contact with one another may cause friction within the relationship. You may not feel like hanging out after work.
Office romances may interfere with individuals` abilities to perform their professional duties. Imagine telling your girlfriend that she`s fired? There is obvious potential for conflicts of interest between office situations and relationships. Be sure to avoid accusations of favoritism, which may harm the morale of colleagues. Try not to date someone within your department.
Jealousy is another negative issue. Because you must usually keep office relationships a secret, other employees may flirt with your partner or vice-versa. You have to keep in mind, that this type of flirting is common and happens all the time in the workplace. So keep cool or the cat`s out of the bag.
Guidelines for success:
Always remember; while inter-office dating is not necessarily illegal, many companies have policies against it. The tricky part regarding such policies is what defines dating. Most companies encourage friendships, so where`s the line between friendship and dating? If you start dating someone in the office, whom can you tell? Should you try to keep it a secret? What if someone finds out? Would it have been better if you had been honest with your coworkers from the getgo?
Here are a few preventative guidelines to help develop a successful office romance without falling into any pitfalls or lawsuits.
- Adhere to the “one-year” rule by only gradually letting a workplace or business acquaintance become a friend. Even then, try to keep it a casual, non-intimate friendship.
- Be careful if you are new at a job or in an extraordinary situation (like a trade show or a conference) and someone seems over-friendly, prying into the intimate details of your personal life.
- Test your business friend with “low risk” trust tests, to see how reliable they are.
- Is something you shared repeated to others? Are you discovering references from private conversations being mentioned in staff meetings? Does the new friendship seem equal and reciprocal or one-sided?
- You can be friendly in the workplace without jeopardizing your career; you don`t have to reveal your family secrets to make friends.
Things you should never say:
There are too many big mouths in business today. Here are four items you should rarely if ever, share with any colleagues:
Bad mouthing or gossip about anyone, especially business associates, clients or customers.
Anything you would not want to be repeated on the evening news or read about in a newspaper.
The sexual prowess of your romantic partner as well as any former sexual liaisons.
Business topics that are unethical or indiscreet.
Email communications present a new challenge to discretion in business relationships. There is something about email that makes men and women let down their guards, so before hitting the send button on your computer, re-read your message and make sure that it is appropriate for a business environment. Office romances can be fun, and successful — a growing number of newlyweds are coworkers. They should take the proper steps, however, to ensure that the relationship will last without interfering in the workplace. Finally, they should also consider the consequences of breaking up with a colleague before beginning the relationship.