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Many relationships bloom and flourish in the work setting. Dating A Co-Worker. Since people in the work setting usually spend long hours with each other, developing a relationship in this environment is not a remote possibility.  Besides, some people find it difficult to have time to meet other people outside of work due to their hectic work schedule.

Though the decision to date an officemate or co-worker is one that many working adult make, there are various considerations that one should bear in mind before making that decision.  More often than not, conspicuous office romances can tend to get distracting.  Dating a co-worker has various implications not only on the personal level but also to your work relationship with each other and other co-workers.  To minimize possible repercussions, here are some considerations you need to keep in mind:

Company Policy Considerations

Check whether the company you work for has a policy regarding office romances or dating policies.  Such policies differ from one company to another.  There are companies that expressly prohibit such and you can get reported if you go against the office rules.   Before deciding to date a co-worker or your boss, brush up on your company’s policy regarding this to be sure that you act according to the rules.  If there are certain gray areas in the office policy that you want to clarify, consult with your company’s human resources people as they are best people who can give you useful guidance and information.

Public Display Of Affection

Dating or having a romantic relationship with a co-worker is sure to be a topic of office gossip.  It could potentially change the attitude of you’re your boss or other co-workers towards you.  You need to limit the impact that an office relationship has on your work and your relationship with your other co-workers.  It would be wise to keep at the minimum, if not totally avoid, romantic interactions during office hours and while in the office.  Public display of affection like kissing and hugging can be distracting, not only for you but also for the rest of the office.  You also need to maintain utmost professionalism.

How Will It Impact Your Productivity?

Whether you like it or not, office relationships bring one potential problem: it’s impact on productivity.  This is one of the reasons why there are many companies that prohibit office relationships or that forbid their employees to date their co-workers.  This “don’t mix work with play” policy wants employees to be focused on their various tasks and not get distracted.  Chances are, even if you are resolute to keep your focus, you will spend a few extra minutes cuddling or chatting with your significant other.  As far as the company is concerned, that few minutes a day add up to hours in a month that could have been spent on doing something useful and work related.

In the event that your company is lax about it or has no policy regarding office relationships and you spend some office time just talking with your partner, you may need to stay at work longer to compensate for that.  If your relationship is already having a negative effect on your productivity and work performance, you and your partner should talk about it and set things right.

The Importance Of Planning Ahead

Whatever it is, it is always advisable to plan head in case your office relationship causes you problems at work.  You need to work out a plan to ensure that your work will not be affected by your office romance.  It would also be wise if you both have an agreement on how to go about your work in case the relationship fails to work out.  If there is another thing aside from office romance that can have a adverse effect on work, it is working with an ex.

…hope that’s of some help,

Billy Baker