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Love in the Office

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One thing I love about the Financial Times is Lucy Kellaway’s advice column – think British sensibilities meets dorky, awkward business people asking questions about office life.

I recently read one of her columns which I found especially amusing and interesting. In it, a manager bemoans how he is in love with a woman who works for him, but the object of his affections doesn’t return his feelings, and now he’s worried about the credibility of his leadership in his team.

Now Lucy breaks out some fairly harsh but well-deserved advice (how British!) about how the only way his credibility could be questioned is if the woman “kiss-and-told” (in a classy, British way, of course) or, more likely, if he has been, and I quote:

still mooching around after her … That will be solved only if she moves, or you do… The only way to repair it is to stop all leching and keep the stiffest of upper lips.”

Even better advice, Lucy? Don’t get into this situation to begin with.

I feel very strongly that a good rule-of-thumb is that co-workers SHOULD NEVER date. The two main reasons being:

  1. If you date your co-worker, it’s hard to leave behind the stresses of the office during your down-time.
  2. If the relationship doesn’t work out, you have to see your ex constantly.

So, find your co-worker attractive? Either quit, or figure out if you can balance these two issues. And chances are, you’re probably overestimating how well you can do just that.

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