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But getting involved with someone who’s married can end up damaging your personal reputation as well as your professional one—if people find out, you could lose integrity—not to mention the pain it could inflict on loved ones (yours or your partner’s).
For those of you considering an office relationship with a married coworker, here’s some sage advice: Don’t dip your pen in the company ink.
To avoid some of these consequences, Brownlee says you’re better off asking out someone in a different department vs. Remember that During Business Hours, Work Comes First If you decide to pursue the relationship, set up some ground rules before things get too serious, says Brownlee.
Think of the discussion as “a prenup for dating,” she says.
The key is that you guys are on the same page.” You’ll also want to make sure you set some boundaries about how much time you spend together in the office in order to actively manage your coworkers’ and managers’ perceptions.
No one thought anything of a random chat you two had in your office before the relationship, but now it can be misconstrued as a social call or, even worse, a risky-business meeting.
And a whopping 31% of office relationships result in marriage—meaning they can’t always be a bad idea, right?
Here’s how to make sure pursuing love won’t cost you your job: Avoid Getting Involved with the Wrong Person According to the Career Builder survey, 24% of intra-office relationships were with someone higher up in the organization.
That’s not easy to do with a spouse or partner who works in a different field.
But here’s the thing: Whether or not there are policies forbidding them, office relationships happen.
A recent survey by Career Builder found that nearly 40% of employees admitted to having a romantic relationship with a co-worker.
If things turn south, the last thing you’ll want is someone gossiping about your private life or what you said about your boss after a particularly tough performance review.
Also, consider how much you’d continue having to work with the person after breaking up—or even how regularly you’re likely to run into him or her at work functions or around the water cooler.
“You’re creating a climate where people are going to see bias whether there really is bias or not.” Relationships with your peers are generally more acceptable—assuming they’re unhitched.