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Is it Ever OK to Have a Romantic Relationship at Work?

interviews
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In This Series

Dan Pimm, December 19

Yes of course, just don’t keep it a secret from your colleagues (they’ll find out quickly enough) and don’t do it if you are already in a relationship with someone (karma will most certainly come and get you).

Michelle Sarpong, Aegis

Of course it’s OK, I mean you spend most of your time at work. However, it really does depend on the individuals. As long as they don’t allow other workmates to interfere with their relationship and on the flip side their relationship doesn’t impact anyone around them, then it’s all good. A problem only arises if there is messy break up, but you can always leave. There are lots of agencies out there!

Olly Ruff, Zenith Optimedia

There’s nothing wrong with having a relationship at work. It’s the break-ups that are the problem. So only go out with someone at work if you know in your heart that you are destined to be together forever. But don’t make that decision in the pub.

Louis Mayne, OMD UK

If it starts to affect your job then maybe it’s not OK, but the same could be said of relationships that are outside of work. Industries draw like-minded people together so relationships are inevitable and I don’t see any problem with them.

John Dawson, MEC

Yes, I've had office romances. Loads! Not here - at another place I worked at. Good-looking ones as well. But they're not a good idea. It's like doing something terrible on your own doorstep. I've had loads of offers here, but I say 'No way, it’s just too distracting.’

Vanessa Doyle, Initiative London

It’s always OK to have a relationship at work, meeting people gets more and more difficult and so who cares where you meet someone, as long as you meet someone. If it feels right I say go for it – as long as you're both grown up about it if it doesn't work out. Go and find your swan!

Emma Brogden, Mediacom

On the one hand it's OK to be in a relationship with someone you work with as they would be more considerate as to why you need to work late, why you’ve got to go to those client drinks and why you have had a ‘few’ alcoholic beverages at lunch. However, on the other hand if it all goes wrong be prepared for everyone to know your business. Nothing spreads worse than gossip, especially in the world of media. What it comes down to is how closely you work with that person and how willing you are to trust them.

Lindsey Webb, Liquid Thread, SMV Group

Of course it is OK, especially in media land whereby nights out fuelled by alcohol and co-workers mixing are often a-plenty. Is it going to cause you a massive pain in the a**e at a later (or not so later) stage? YES! With varying extremes of consequences ranging from awkwardness, being the focus of the office-gossip or having to leave the role you are in entirely. Occasionally it works, of course, but mostly it doesn’t.

Mike Lawrence, Manning Gottlieb OMD

I’m not sure if it’s the same everywhere, but in our office people thrive on gossip – we all love it, don’t deny it! So what’s wrong with feeding the needy?

Craig Constantinou, Mediacom

It’s likely to happen considering the amount of young people in the industry and the social lives that we lead. It also helps that we’re like-minded and understand the requirements of the job. Just be prepared to handle the opinions and the gossiping.

Charlie Woodall, OMD

Everyone knows that the best bit about office Christmas parties isn’t actually the event itself (although they can be pretty good) but the hungover discussion the day after where the first question is inevitably “So who got with who last night?” The answers always surprise and provide ample entertainment to survive the next day, and are absolutely the reason why work relationships are OK, particularly the ones both parties regret the day after.

Ross Coombes, Amplifi

At the end of the day, what is a ‘relationship’? A quickie in the toilets, a fumble under the desk, a game of footsie from the person sitting opposite you…. If so, then, yeah, why not!

The verdict: A big thumbs up, especially from the spectators

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