Monday, July 25, 2005

To date or not to date

Going back 6 months ago one of the girls in the office resigned, whilst it wasn’t made public we all knew she left because she had been seeing one of the Head Managers (her direct manager). A person on her team had a bit of a dummy spit one day and dobbed them into HR and the General Manager; needless to say that the situation got pretty messy very quickly and the relationship ended soon after.

I was actually really sad to see her go because she was a really lovely person and a good recruiter. Although she applied for an internal transfer she was unsuccessful and had to resign. In a discussion with my work colleague I made the passing comment that what happened was really harsh.

My colleague responded that no, she had it coming and that she put herself in that position by going out with her boss in the first place. I agree that I personally would never have put myself in that situation but when feelings get involved it gets a bit tricky, furthermore she never intended on people finding out. I guess in her defence she was in her 30s, had just arrived from overseas didn't know anyone; the male involved is also a very charming individual. Had it of been a manager in another team I don’t think it would have been an issue.

In general most people agree that dating someone you work with is a bad idea, it runs the possibility of making things very awkward if it doesn’t work out. Seeing that most of us spend ridiculous hours at work, it’s a bit ironic that it’s also the place where we are most likely to meet someone especially when you work for a large company.


Ken said...

In some ways I understand... ("All's fair in love and war") but if I was a boss I wouldn't be happy if one of the employees was dating her direct mananger. There is too much risk.

A bit easy for me to speculate but I'm sure the big boss would've been happy to accomodate if they went talk him/her in the first place and asked what were the options?

thegreatwhitehope said...

I see work as similar to school and uni in that regard, in that you spend the majority of your time with these people and in a lot of ways they dominate your life. I can quite easily see how office romances start, except it could be a bit more rare than school/uni because you have much larger age gaps etc.

I would never do it, and I wouldn't advise any of my friends to do it, because the potential for it to end and become awkward is HUGE.

Definitely dating your direct manager should be a no-no.

PiCkLeS said...

Yeah poor girl, I don't think she realised how serious the consequences would be. Last I heard she might have to go back to England because Hudson had sponsored her to live and work here. I think it was really slack for the other individual to dob them in because in this instance she did it only out of spite. Makes you think twice about who you can trust at work.

Speaking of different ways to meet people, Speed dating is all the crazy at work. Gone are the days when it is all done in secret - people are lining up outside the door!

Bosco said...

No dating at work what so ever....
unless it's a multinational, you are in different departments and she's offshore... haha

DJ Ho said...

It can easily happen because as you said you spent the majority of your daily hours at work. I actually have a friend that's in that situation (dating their immediate manager) - it'll be interesting come performance review time!

I agree with the above comments, it'll just be too awkward on a daily basis, especially if you try to keep it from everyone. Both parties put themselves in that situation - they have to accept the consequences altho that person that dobbed them in is a biatch.

Look what they could have done was allocate her a different manager or made the transfer happen. I mean if they are willing to bring you all the way from the UK, I'm sure an internal transfer wouldn't have been that hard.

Also, I have come across two golden rules of thumb in relation to workplace dating (NB: slightly crude mind you):

- No fishing off the firm's wharf

- You don't get your meat from where you get your bread

Jerm said...

Hey you're an HR person, is it HR policy that no office romances/relationships with direct superiors occur.

Or these are just some of the unsaid things that ppl go about?

PiCkLeS said...

I'm not actually part of the HR team in my company. But after this incident happened my assistant and i spent agess looking for policy that related to this and couldn't find any. she came to the conclusion that it must fall under EEO as you can be percieved to not be treating all staff equally (which was the instance in this case).