The advent of outsourcing companies has meant close interaction with cultures spread out throughout the world.
This has led to a shift in societal attitudes, with permissiveness and openness replacing traditional behaviour codes.
Brinda Jayaraman, Councellor says, "Majority of the employees in BPOs are young, besides this, nights shifts, exposure to people from
different cultures, intense working conditions requiring close interactions between co workers, all have created ideal conditions for love
relationships in the office."
In a study conducted by Monster India a couple of years back, a high 58 percent of office goers confessed to having been involved in an
office romance or being open to the idea. Forty two percent of those polled did not think it a good idea.
Reports from a survey conducted by the global research firm Synovate on behalf of India`s largest staffing company, Teamlease, point out that
56% of the subjects felt office romances have the potential to cause a negative impact on the quality and speed of work. In the same study 44
percent of the respondents viewed it as a convenient way to move up the corporate ladder or even to get a better pay packet.
Readying for Romance in the Office
Offices are good places to meet partners especially in these days of long working hours. But it is fraught with niggling problems having the
capacity to disrupt the tenor of life. Though affairs of the heart cannot be expected to follow rigid codes, some basic rules can integrate
romance and work without too much of a trouble.
- Check the company policy on workplace dating, find out if rules make it mandatory for couples to report a relationship. Some companies may
require partners to work in different departments or may even require one of the partners to leave.
- Keeping the boss informed is a good idea to ensure that no problems crop up further down.
- A general rule suggested by psychologists is not to date immediate superiors or direct subordinates. This could raise suspicion of
colleagues about partiality and any reward, even though justly earned, could be seen as the direct result of being in a relationship with the
boss. This could also create unnecessary gossip leading to difficult work situations especially for the partner in the junior post.
- Discuss at the onset whether to take coworkers into confidence. Stick to the decision and avoid contradictory behavior
- The heady emotions of being in love may be too wonderful to ignore but letting it intrude on work will negatively affect productivity and
quality of work.
- Jayaraman, has this to say, "Happy or unhappy, partners tend to spend a lot of time sending sms or chatting on cell phones or through the
computer -which naturally affects work!! And incase of misunderstandings, restlessness sets in until the issue is resolved and till that time
concentration goes out of the window!
- Office love relationships have the danger of going stale like all other romances and there is the added risk of having to work in the
same office as the ex.
Psychologists suggest being fully aware of the pros and cons of office romances before getting into one.
The Teamlease study also came up with another startling view from respondents. Thirty four percent of them found no harm in having
relationships with married colleagues while 59 percent felt that women were equal partners in such romances and quite frequently were
responsible for initiating relationships. Watch this space for more information on that.