The Office workplace happens to be one of the most underrated places for people to find love. Whenever two colleagues start spending time beyond professional capacities, eyebrows are raised, and rumour mills work overtime, almost as if everyone is waiting for inevitable collapse of the relationship. This problem is further compounded when the two people involved hold different positions in the organisation. Dating your immediate boss, or other seniors, might not be as prevalent as colleagues dating each other, but sure follows a different set of rules and dynamics. If the Cupid has struck you and your boss this year, make sure you both have an understanding of how things are going to pan out.
While it will be presumptuous and flawed to assume that employees only date their bosses to advance their careers, one cannot deny the set of benefits such a relationship brings along:
- Interests are shared: You are working in the same organisation, and if in the same department team, chances are you are bound to have some sort of mutual interests. It is easier bond over these shared interests and passion. No matter how others might be dismissive of your passion for numbers, economy, words, social work, management, marketing, or absolutely anything, you will always find some common ground with your boss.
- Opportunities to work together: It would be exciting to do some wonderful work, with the person you’re dating, right? Not only do you get to spend time with each other, working in an area that interests you both, but you could actually learn a lot! So working on projects, presentations and ideas will be more fun.
- You already know them a little better: Their position shows that they must have worked harder than others, and chances are they are better leaders, and manager. All of these points to the fact that they are a responsible, hard-working and dedicated human, qualities reflect positively on them. So you already they possess these qualities.
If you have already convinced yourself that the small crush you have on your boss might be worth acting on, hold your horses. Although, the prospects of dating a boss might be alluring, there are several pitfalls as well:
- Achievements might be undermined: Any work that can actually make you feel proud is likely to be undermined, for it will be assumed that the boss must have helped you in some way or the other. You will be made to realise the explicit and implicit ‘benefits’ of dating the boss, time and again.
- Closure: Depending on how the future of the relationship pans out, your future in the organisation might be in jeopardy. A bad break up would mean uncomfortable situations in the office, and the threat of blurring personal and professional boundaries will go up in such a scenario.
- Relationship with other employees: The nature of your relationship with your colleagues is likely to undergo a change, for it is assumed that you will relay information to the boss, which is otherwise not meant for their ears.
However, with a little caution, you can perfectly balance the benefits and the pitfalls, thereby ensuring a smooth personal and professional relationship. Here are the five things you should keep in your mind while dating your boss:
You both need to decide if you wish to make your relationship known to others, together. Make sure you know the company policy about dating co-workers, and bosses, and make sure you’re on the right side of it. If you decide to keep it a secret, sustaining a relationship will be harder in office, but lesser people might be good news.
Identify and establish clear boundaries, to avoid overlapping personal and professional roles. As hard as it may be to execute, keeping office dynamics within the office, and not bringing them into the personal equation works the best.
Providing undue or unfair benefits to the other person will work against you, and actually damage both of your performances and reputations. There needs to clarity about communication regarding work deadlines, and how the personal relationship cannot be used as a shield to make up for bad performances.
No matter if your relationship is private or public, the office is meant for office work, and time outside of office for personal activities. Using official emails, telephones or budgets for communication or dating will be a problem in the future. Distinguish between the time when you are supposed to work together, and be on a date together.
Have an understanding about how invested the other person is. The future, no matter, good or messy, should not impact your career, or job, in a negative manner. If things are getting serious, have an honest conversation about the same.
People ending up with their bosses in not unheard of, but surely, the road that they have travelled isn’t easy. Dating a boss comes with its fair share of baggage, and the setting of the relationship is such that only a few are able to survive the test of gossip, appraisals, bonuses and promotions. If you have ever dated your boss or currently are, or know someone who has, leave us a comment about how easy or difficult it was!