Virtually all office activities are being outsourced. However, one thing that does not face the danger of outsourcing is the good ole’ office romance. Employees worldwide acknowledge that romantic relationships are prevalent in the workplace, and embrace them for many reasons. According to Fox Business, the rate of occurrence for office romance differs from country to country. China and India have the highest rates, where about 70% of the workers are involved in some form of office romance. Malaysia also happens to be among the countries with a high occurrence rate of romantic relationships in offices.
Why is it Happening?
Office romance is becoming a common thing across the world. It’s not surprising that office romance is becoming more and more accepted. Employees spend about 70% of their time at work while spending about a third of this time in the office. Office romance, if handled in the right manner, can blossom into a good long-lasting relationship. Many people who have been able to deal with their office relationships well have ended up walking down the aisle with their co-workers. However, if the relationship is handled poorly, the aftermath can even lead to harassment lawsuits. Office romance needs to be handled with a lot of care as it portends dangers for the employers and the employees involved.
Managing the Relationships
Employees have office policies and other incentives to deter them from involving in office romance. First, flirting in the office can lead to a drop in work performance. Secondly, you do not want to deal with the Human Resources Department because of a mismanaged work relationship. In order to steer clear from potential dangers, the use of office email for romantic indulgencies should be avoided since your boss or co-worker may have access to your emails. If you are really romantically attracted to someone in the office, you need to find a balance. You must be careful in balancing the demands of your work and your office romance. The office policies relating to office romance should always be obeyed. Anything that could be misunderstood as harassment should always be avoided, and you should never be too forward when making your first move.
Cases of office romance involving a employee and his or her superior are the most difficult to handle. When the relationships go sour, harassment is normally the outcome for these relationships. It’s easier for employees at the same level to be romantically linked. Colleagues with common interests can relate to each other well, and before they know it, they might find themselves in a romantic relationship. Unfortunately, for a superior with genuine feelings for a junior employee, this should be avoided at all costs.
As a boss, you need to be on your best behavior, especially since you’ve worked very hard to reach where you are. You don’t want to make a wrong move that might jeopardize your career. Keep your relationships professional. Furthermore, something that applies to employees at all levels is that display of affection should not be seen in public. Co-workers displaying affection in the office can cause discomforts and inconveniences to the other employees. However, if you find yourself in a situation where you cannot keep your feelings bottled up, it might be a good idea to request for a transfer. This will save both your careers. Most importantly, if you are currently married, cheating with one of your co-workers is a big mistake.
This article was penned by Ty Whitworth for the team at badoo.