The workplace seems like an ideal place to meet someone, right? You walk by a cute guy, he looks at you and smiles and you start daydreaming about your wedding. After a month of flirting back and forth, he asks you out on a date. After a few dates, you find that you share some things in common but the chemistry is missing! You’re bummed but you know you have to eventually let him know. When it’s finally over, you feel relieved BUT you will still have to see him around the office…Awkward!!
I’m probably more conservative than most when it comes to dating in the workplace. I started my career in Human Resources and, when you’re in that department, it’s difficult to date someone in the office for a number reasons. As an HR professional, I was privy to a lot of sensitive and confidential information. I would warn my work friends that if they told me something in confidence that was related to work, there was a chance that I would have to disclose it for legal reasons. So, just to play it safe, I avoided dating in the office for the first 8 years of my career but THEN I started working for a very large company and started to double think my decision.
I started to date someone who worked on my floor but in a different department. We went on a few really fun dates but, in the end, I didn’t feel the chemistry and it didn’t work out. Unfortunately, we continued to see each other in the office and it didn’t help that my office happened to be right next the bathrooms! I think he ended up moving to a different building or left the company but for those few months afterwards, I was careful when I walked around to avoid any awkward encounters. It was a reminder of why I had decided long ago not to date in the workplace until I met another guy in that same company 🙂
Now, this guy worked in a completely different segment of the company and a different building. There was no way I was going to run into him on my floor so I took a chance. We went on a few dates but, in the end, it didn’t work out and I didn’t have to worry about running into him on a daily basis.
Below is a quick guide to help you decide whether to date or not date the person at work:
DON’T TO DO IT if:
There’s a chance you can still run into him at work
You work in the same department
He’s your boss OR your direct report (sometimes not an obvious one for some people)
You hear from other co-workers that he dates a lot of women in the office
You might end up seeing him at the holiday party…with another date!
Have something you want to add? Write it down in the comments below or share your story!