When your spouse is also your co-worker

When you’re working together, you’re together a lot.Find ways to create personal space and boundaries.

It’s one thing to be married to your job. But to be married to someone else who works there? Couples who clock into the same office also share commutes and professional aspirations —  a situation that needs to be carefully managed.

“A lot of people do it extremely well, and it’s really common,” workplace relationship guru Courtney Anderson says. “It’s a great way to maximize your resources and benefits; and when it works, it works amazingly.”
And when it doesn’t? You could get fired and divorced by the same boss — ouch. Here’s how to stay on the right track:

Keep it seriously professional: “When it’s done right, people take their work very seriously,” Anderson says. “They’re not like, ‘Can you file this business report, oh honey, I love you, can you pick up the kids?’”

It’s all about creating — and then staying within — the lines, agrees “Office Mate” author Helaine Olen, who has worked alongside her husband for five years. “You cannot use your spousal relationship in any way, shape or form to get a favor,” she emphasizes.

Give yourself space: The tough part about splitting an office with your soul-mate isn’t finding a way to work together, it’s finding a way to be apart. “There is obviously a thing called too much togetherness,” Olen warns. “Be careful about that. Commute to work separately — it’s a really neat solution to the problem. It gives you some time to be apart.”


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