Love understands no rules or regulations. But love can also get you fired, especially if you get involved with a dear colleague
Even the thought of an office romance is titillating. Staid plots of office romances have been the staple of blockbuster movies and bestsellers. Office romances are now actually on the rise. The workforce is getting younger and the office is an ideal place to find partners with similar incomes and professional interests.
The office is the new village!
Monday mornings are never the same once romance blooms in the office. Sneaking out for lunch, stealing glances, speaking in codes, and romantic escapades! Work never was so exciting! Let’s face it; an office encounter is the ultimate sexual fantasy that couples indulge in behind locked doors.
The office is the new village. The chances of meeting anyone outside office are getting grimmer as most people spend a chunk of their time at work. This is your social circle for all practical purposes! Your coworkers are the people you spend maximum time with. An office romance therefore saves time and energy, if you want to look at the practical side of things. But perhaps that’s too prosaic an angle?
The dark side
Real life rarely resembles reel life. A real life office romance can be exciting and true to the ‘picture’ in the beginning. However, it can also complicate your professional life. Unless you are not concerned about spoiling your reputation at work or losing your job, do not rush into it. Office romance is a baggage with some wanted and some unwanted consequences, and you have to carry all of it.
- Coworkers: Of course everyone will find out about it. Once they do find out, they will gossip. You should be ready to face it. If you are dating a senior and get a promotion, people might question your credibility. And if you are not serious about the affair then you will be termed as the “bad” person in office. Others might not feel comfortable working with you.
- Policy: Find out if there are company policies against inter-office romances. Talk to your HR once you two decide to come out. Nine per cent of offices worldwide have an anti inter-office romance policy.
- Power equations: It becomes very difficult to work out the power equations, especially if both of you are at the same position in the company. Although you cannot decide who you will fall in love with, if it is your boss or junior then it can get tricky. He or she might be termed as your plaything and the rationality behind your decisions might be questioned. In such a situation, someone from a different team take the heat off the relationship.
- Jealousy: Your friends might get jealous if you are too cosy or are found snogging at every turn. Intimacy is a no-no in office. Your friends might have already had a clue about you two before you even started. But that does not mean you get too comfortable now.
- Stressful: It is difficult to compartmentalise your personal and professional life in such a scenario. It is humanly not possible to behave differently with a person in and out of office. Also don’t bring rifts to work. Your relationship trials are strictly personal and no one wants to do anything with it.
- Competition: What if both of you are competing for the same position? Will you be ready to sacrifice that opportunity for the other person? Ask yourself these questions before going ahead with a romance in office. You should be prepared for such situations.
- Break-up affects: This is the scariest part. Not all relationships work out well and break-ups do happen. If you do decide to part ways do so with dignity. Do not gossip or pass any kind of unkind remark. It looks bad on you, puts other people in a fix, creates a bad atmosphere and might even play havoc in the other person’s life. It is immature and undignified. Keep all the mudslinging for people back home. There will be all sorts of rumours floating around. And if the other person is a part of the management process, he/she can even get you fired.
It is not all hunky dory when you find yourself attracted to someone at work. You do not want call him/her ‘sweetie’ in the middle of a meeting! Consider your career before taking any decisions. Try to avoid romance in office if you can. And if you cannot, then be ready to jeopardise your job and start looking for other options. If you at all hook up with someone and get married, then make sure you retain your individuality and do not turn into the company couple. If you lose your individuality then chances are that both of you will also lose out on projects and promotions.