This post was written by an external contributor. Samantha Bobb-Lucas explains what in the way of you shooting your shot at a colleague this Valentines.
Office romances are unsurprisingly REALLY common. You see your colleagues 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, constantly talking and constantly relying on one and another for support. It’s only a matter of time before Cupid strikes his bow… well, either that, or you both wind up hooking up at your workmate’s leaving do, thanks to a few shots.
Whichever way it happens, office romances can be a risky territory. Aside from potentially annoying your co-workers with too much PDA, or being the subject of favouritism if you’re dating a senior member, the worst possible outcome is of course, the incredible awkwardness that stands if you end up calling it quits.
There’s nothing worse than trying to get over someone and having to see them EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. Before you know it, word has got around the office, remixed stories of the break-up start to unfold, and if worse comes to worst, you may start to consider leaving.
Whilst an office relationship could also be the best commitment you’ve ever made, the moral of the story is, if you’re looking to pursue one, you HAVE to be sure.
So if there’s someone you’ve got your eye on in the boardroom, here’s five checkpoints on whether or not you should go in for the plunge…
Do you see them as more than just a one night stand?
If the answer is no then don’t do it. If you’re looking for a one night stand there are plenty of eligible people outside of your workplace that you won’t have to awkwardly face every day, after deciding that you want nothing to do with them. Whilst you will never know exactly how long you and colleague could last, you need to at least see them as someone special, to go ahead and pursue what could potentially be detrimental to your working relationship (if things turn sour, that is). On the other hand, if sparks are flying, and you get the same vibe from them, then you know that it’s worth it.
Can you keep it on the DL?
Whilst no one is saying that work romances need to be top secret, at the same time public displays of affection are likely to turn from, “Aww, they’re so sweet,” to “Get a room!” in a matter of minutes. Keeping things professional in the office is the ultimate goal, as well as learning to keep your business private. From arguments to bedroom antics, no one needs to know!
Do you think you can face seeing your partner every day?
Having an office romance means signing yourself up to seeing that person day in and day out, five days a week (if you’re a full timer). That includes seeing them the morning after that argument that might have gone down the night before, and potentially sacrificing your ‘me time’ for ‘we time’ on your peaceful lunch time stroll. Relationships no doubt, grow the more time you and your partner spend together, although absence also is known to make th e heart grow fonder. And if you’re the type that needs your space, then having a beau in the office might not be the one for you.
Can you handle a break-up?
As sad as it is, some good things have to come to an end and if that ending is bitter, you could be screwed. You need to assess whether you are strong enough to face everything that comes with a break-up if things don’t work out. That includes everything from gossiping workmates, to the challenge of remaining professional with your ex even if you’re dying inside. The last thing you want is to let it drive you out of the company, because you can’t face seeing them.
Can you keep the spark alive?
If you do the journey in together, spend the day together, lunch together and go home together, then the thought of date night in the evening might not be the most exciting. Being with a colleague can often mean putting in slightly more effort to keep the spark alive. However, office relationships are all about balance, if you make sure you have your own set of friends that you can spend some of your lunch time’s with, then you’re not in each other’s face every minute of every day, and that way, date night can still feel special.
If you reckon you can handle all of these checkpoints, now is the time to make your move!