We spend a lot of time at work, so it’s only natural that during all those long hours working side by side you might find a coworker attractive enough to date. It is also natural to worry about sexual harassment and creating a hostile work environment if things don’t go well. Add technology to the mix and dating in the workplace becomes a scary proposition!
Here are some rules to follow when pursuing a workplace romance:
1. Know your company’s dating policy before you do anything. Companies vary widely on what they consider acceptable, so know the rules before you approach somebody for a date. This is particularly true of those in management, so don’t take this lightly since it could cost you your job.
2. If you approach somebody, who then declines, consider it final. Repeatedly asking somebody out is harassment and no matter how harmless you try to make it, it comes off as annoying. No really means no!
3. Keep it professional while at work. That means no flirting, no giggling, no sending each other notes or any of the other stuff you might want to do. It was cute in elementary school, but it is sure to put-off others and lead to problems at work.
4. Watch out for the technology trap! Don’t constantly text, don’t Tweet about your date last night and for goodness sake, don’t post pictures or updates on Facebook or Myspace. It will come back to bite you if things go badly or if they go really well. Nobody at work needs to know your intimate details and posting that you got lucky is tacky and could cost you a promotion or job.
5. Know that things in real life often don’t work out like they do on TV. When a relationship ends it isn’t funny or entertaining; it is painful and potentially embarrassing. This can make things difficult at work, so talk about it with your coworker-partner and see what they have to say. You’ll need to have an
exit strategy that includes parting as friends, which means you can’t be a jerk and expect to split amicably. Figuring it out in advance will help if the times comes.
Dating your coworkers is a bit complicated, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth it! Lots of happily ever afters have started on the job. Just keep in mind that a lot of horror stories have also started there, so be wise right from the start. Be professional, courteous and on your best behavior both at work and in your relationship so you don’t end up regretting mixing business and pleasure!
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Tried the whole relationship with coworker thing and it didn’t go well? Maybe you’re better off shopping for a new job! Check out the Albuquerque Employment Guide at http://albuquerque.employmentguide.com/