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Is it ever OK to date a work colleague?

Dating in the office comes with some big risks to your professional life.

We spend more time in work than not, so it’s natural that relationships form in the workplace.

Office romances aren’t unusual, in fact, according to recruitment website Monster, 44% of us have been involved with a colleague at some point during our careers.

But is it ethical and should you avoid doing it? Experts say that it depends on the specifics of the scenario.

The now ex-chief executive of McDonald’s, Steve Easterbrook, has paid the price for dating an employee. He was recently fired as a result, with the company, which forbids managers having relationships with any subordinate, saying he had “violated company policy” and shown “poor judgement”.

That being said, many happy couples have met in an office environment, so it’s unfair to say that co-workers should never date.

Clearly it’s a tricky subject and one that requires serious thought, ground rules and lots of research into your company’s guidelines.

What are your views? Is it ever OK to date a co-worker? Have you had experience of this?

Is it ever OK to date a work colleague?

401 people have already voted, what's your opinion? Yes No

What are your views?

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ALW10
5 days ago
0
Thanks for voting!
If we hadn’t then we would not have been married for coming up to 42 years!
Margret
11th Nov 2019
0
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It is ok but if it goes wrong at work it's a dreadful situation to be in. Not worth it.
Mrchipps1
10th Nov 2019
0
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why shouldn't we date a work colleague, if a company puts a ban in work relationships in place, in my opinion they are being dictatorial and I will simply find another job and to hell with them ,as they are infringing your freedom of choice, expression and liberty
jeanmark
10th Nov 2019
2
Thanks for voting!
I think the problem is if someone in a very senior position dates a junior member of staff, there can be difficulties. Other workers may think there is favouritism, there can be questions as to whether the relationship is on equal terms and other problems. There shouldn't be a problem with those of equal 'rank'.
JaneF82
10th Nov 2019
0
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Met both my husbands at work - never let it interfere with work.
Yodama
9th Nov 2019
0
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Most people feel it is okay, there are exceptions of course. Now and then you get companies that are totally out of control.

I had a CEO who went through all the girls in the offices like a callous lothario.
Left the offices in turmoil, jealousy, broken hearts, productivity down and staff turnover was high due to resignations.
His second-in-command did the same thing.
Result was, their wives found out, divorced them, business collapsed and all because there was no moral code or rules.
I think there should be strict non-fraternisation rules.
But then it is probably not the norm.
Madaline
9th Nov 2019
0
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I met both of my husbands at work so l see nothing wrong with this at all
traceyann66
9th Nov 2019
1
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I would if it meant getting a 21 million payoff, thank you very much now bye
PaulineJ17
8th Nov 2019
0
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Your place of work is whre you spend most time and likely to meet many people. Not to date someone is a bit of a downer. I met my husband at work 52 years ago and it always brightened my day going into work. However disgression should always be used..... the question should be is it right for "management" to date subordinate workers ?
Kath19
8th Nov 2019
0
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Yes I think it is ok to date a work colleague.
sparrer
8th Nov 2019
0
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What wasn't mentioned in the script above is that Steve Easterbrook, annual earnings £12+million, received a £21million pay-off. By all means have a relationship with a colleague if you're both prepared for the consequences but don't expect to be asked to leave with such an immoral hand-out. It makes a compete mockery of company rules.
dragon27
8th Nov 2019
0
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Spending more weekly hours at work , with little social time ,its the only place to met a diverse range of possible mates.
Rubio
8th Nov 2019
-2
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As a Man, I think that a special relationship at work is very important. It is exciting if you can keep it secret. During work, you can have several lovely moments of "complicity" that make you a better worker. You do not like to fail with respect to your accomplice and she will do the same. It is an exciting challenge. Make you a better lover and a better employee. It is your choice, and if you feel at work the same rush that you feel of work, makes you alive and fresh, not tired and bored.
Jankel
8th Nov 2019
0
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We meet nearly 49 years at work. I used to do my husbands wages. Married for over 47 years now, with 2 wonderful sons, 2 lovely daughter in laws and 3 amazing and very entertaining Grandchildren. So I think the answer is yes.
JoanM14
8th Nov 2019
2
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It must be better than meeting on line
PatriciaM56
8th Nov 2019
1
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Yes I agree, you will get to know them first before any relationship starts.
Jwills19
7th Nov 2019
0
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If not for the fact that I’ve been married for 32 years, I could have had several relationships with colleagues in that time.
DeeMeister59
6th Nov 2019
3
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if its between 2 consenting adults and neither party was bullied then perfectly OK
ChrisD5
6th Nov 2019
2
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I’ve been married 45 years to the man I dated but my boss didn’t like it so glad I ignored him.
LillianW
6th Nov 2019
0
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Provided the relationship is left at the door, I see no problem. Hard to maintain the business / personal contact but it can be done. Wouldn't fancy it if it was my boss though.
Peewee22
5th Nov 2019
1
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It is okay as long as there is not a relationship of power between the two participants and any breakup of the relationship in the future could risk the employment security of one of the couple. I dated a work colleague once but we were equal grade.
minap
5th Nov 2019
1
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I dated a colleague at work and married him!
gel65
5th Nov 2019
0
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I met my husband when he was a warder in the British Museum and I was a library assistant in the British Library. It wasn't easy trying to see each other and getting the same breaks together though. Some people were really sweet about it, others not to.
LanceFogg
5th Nov 2019
2
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There's an old saying, "never mix business with pleasure". Dating a work colleague may seem an ideal move but it can bring problems. A lot depends on your relative positions in the organisation.
bob scott
5th Nov 2019
1
Thanks for voting!
It depends how professional they are going to be in the work place?
They are employed to do a job and that is what they get paid to do, One cannot stop genuine love, but there is a time and place for everything. Bob Scott.
Robyn65
5th Nov 2019
0
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Working for Personnel Director, I dated a member of the IT team who used to be sent by Help Desk to repair my computer. We've been married now for 24 years. My boss simply said "confidentiality" and read a poem at our wedding. Confidentiality has at all times been maintained as has my computer - now laptops.
Billythequiche
5th Nov 2019
5
Thanks for voting!
I find it hard to understand why this question is being asked. Are we so in thrall to a tiny number of narrow minded and of narrow agenda activists who see wrong in everything? Would it be better if all social contact, other than necessary business interaction, was online? The thought makes me shudder. Branding all people the same as a few bad apples or taking things that were acceptable 50 or 60 years ago out of context are foolish and the tools of poor intellect too easily swayed by fad or fashion. I suppose it was easier for us, living in a generation of youth clubs and lots of dance halls; but the other fertile ground for "boy meets girl" was the factory floor or the office.
JenniferT57
5th Nov 2019
1
Thanks for voting!
Relationships will develop between work colleagues. It is, after all, where you spend most of your time. Where I used to work, it was stipulated that staff could not have line management responsibility for someone they were in a relationship with. Better than trying to keep it a secret
saffiecat
5th Nov 2019
1
Thanks for voting!
As long it is two consenting adults, I do not see a problem
Margaret Hart
5th Nov 2019
1
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As long as the colleagues don’t actually work with each other or one use the other for favours then things should be okay but thy should always remember that work and relation ship never mix..
Tr1sh
4th Nov 2019
1
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I think it's okay as long as the personal relationship is kept out of the workplace which, it very often isn't.
GwynethC8
4th Nov 2019
4
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I married my line manager (50+ years ago) and my daughter married a work colleague. As long as you are adult enough to keep the relationships separate from work what's the problem?
Wilf
4th Nov 2019
1
Thanks for voting!
I think it has all gone a bit far with the PC in our society BUT I agree with senior directors and managers they should not be having affairs with subordinates. For one thing it is bad for morale and makes them look unprofessional to other workers, creates bias and ill feeling in the workplace. When the MD does it as in the Big Macs case here it is all a bit stupid.
ChrissieDB
4th Nov 2019
1
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I've worked in a few places where couples, indeed several family members, worked quite well together. Some couples began as work colleagues.
Ian123
4th Nov 2019
3
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As long as there is no coercion involved I can’t see any problem, except for when they split up!
Munsterlander
4th Nov 2019
2
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This chap was on £12 million a year (according to the newspapers) and he has resigned over an affair. That is life but if he was the chap who was the Managing Director with all that money you would have thought he would have been more sensible but that's the human race for you.
JOHNEFF
4th Nov 2019
5
Thanks for voting!
Nowadays it is difficult to meet a prospective partner as there are fewer pubs, and apart from dating sights, meeting people at work is one of the few ways left to meet anyone.
ElisabethR
4th Nov 2019
5
Thanks for voting!
You spend a deal of time in the workplace....you are almost bound to make relationships there. The bigger number of couples I know met at work. However it was written into this chaps contract so he should have had more care. Wonder what his pay off will be? Bet that's in his contract too. If he is serious about this relationship one of them should have resigned.
MrsPat
4th Nov 2019
4
Thanks for voting!
It depends what they look like. Back in the day it was one of the only places to meet good looking lads. The pub was out as it was just filled with grubby old men and discos were few and far between.

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