Dating at work? Follow these tips to stay professional

If you are considering starting a work-based relationship, read these tips to ensure you get it right

Dating in the workplace can be fun and make your working day more interesting, but an office romance has the potential to quickly turn sour. 

Be upfront

As tempting and romantic as a clandestine relationship might seem, it is better to be honest. Nobody will miss the obvious chemistry; in addition, your co-workers may resent the attempt to pull the wool over their eyes. Tell anybody who needs to know, such as your boss and HR, and ensure that you adhere to company policy regarding workplace romances – the last thing you want is to come clean about a relationship you should not have been having in the first place.

Don’t flaunt it

Your new relationship might be the best you have ever had, but always stay professional and try your best to keep any displays of affection for after hours. If you absolutely can’t keep your hands to yourself, be as subtle as possible and avoid any compromising situations while in the workplace.

Know your limits

Workplace romances in which one party manages the other or is in a position of authority are generally a bad idea. Too many things can go wrong in this dynamic, and both of you could end up in an awkward position. Consider whether the relationship is really worth it before taking the plunge; if this person is unlikely to be ‘the one’, don’t risk it.

Think ahead

Even in the first heady days of a new relationship, try to plan ahead. You may feel head over heels in love now, but what if the romance does not last? Have a conversation about how you would handle work life as an ex-couple and be sure to stick to a sensible plan should the need arise.

Manage your time

You might feel as though you can’t get enough of each other, but rein in the amount of time you spend together while on the clock. Limit the number of lunch breaks you take together and remember you are both there to work, not to enjoy each other’s company.

Be tech-savvy

Avoid the temptation to send your partner – or potential partner – flirty emails or communications using your workplace’s internal system. You never know who might catch sight of your computer screen or whether your emails are monitored by higher management. Stick to texts for a more private and work-safe option.

You only live once

If you really feel that you can’t resist and can follow your workplace’s rules, why not take the plunge? One of the most common ways in which couples state their relationships began is through meeting at work. If you are sensible and follow these tips, this might be your starting point.

Dating in the workplace carries many risks; however, it is possible to manage it without too many problems. Keep things professional, take a sensible approach, and you may find your office romance is the start of something special.

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