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Just say ‘no’ to office romances

Like all enclosed social settings, the workplace can steam up.

Like all enclosed social settings, the workplace can steam up. Career counselors say as many as half of us are someday destined to catch a gulp of Love Potion in the company coffee pot. But not all love stories come with a happy epilogue, and before you fall head over heels for that workmate-slash-soulmate, take one last sober look at where you’re tumbling from.

“Think about all the things that you want to be in your career,” says workplace relationship expert Courtney Anderson. “Ask yourself how being perceived as someone who is more interested in romance than finance is going to help.”

And don’t be surprised when it turns into fodder for watercooler gossip. “People love when co-workers date in the office — it gives them something to talk about,” Helaine Olen, author of “Office Mate,” notes. “What people worry about is the possibility that you’ll have a breakup.”

But co-workers may never approve if you date the boss. “People become jealous,” Anderson adds. “And not because they want to date your boyfriend, but because they’re coming to work early and doing 100 little tasks, and you don’t do that anymore because look who you’re dating.”

If you must make a move

If you’re truly smitten, we can’t discourage you. Just remember, there are less awkward locales than the office to ask someone to dinner — like a public execution, maybe.

“If you’re going to ask someone in the office on a date, make sure you ask them outside the office. Don’t just walk up to the desk and ask them out,” Olen cautions. “If you can’t find a way to ask them out for coffee naturally, that might be a sign that it isn’t meant to be.”

 
 
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