Vault is the trusted source for professionals and students pursuing and managing high-potential careers and employers seeking to engage this valuable audience. Visit for more.


It’s no secret that the average employee spends more time at work than anywhere else, greatly increasing the likelihood that chemistry with a co-worker will bubble over.’s 2011 Office Romance Survey found that 59 percent of respondents confessed to having had a colleagues-with-benefits relationship with someone at work. And 63 percent said they’d do it again.

“The workplace provides opportunities to blur from professional to personal,” noted Jason Levin, a career expert at “Whether that’s OK or not depends on the people involved. Your reputation in and out of the office could be in serious jeopardy depending on how each party handles the relationship.”

If you’re having an office romance, then here’s a little advice from Levin on how best to manage it:

Know your employer’s policy on dating in the office

You should be able to find it in the employee handbook. If the company allows dating between co-workers, follow the guidelines. If you are breaking company protocol, be aware of the possible repercussions should you get caught. 

Avoid superior-subordinate relationships

Superiors have too much influence over your salary and promotion. For all the benefits you might obtain when entering into a relationship with your boss, the exact opposite can happen — or worse — should the two of you break up.

Do not date outside vendors

If the relationship ends and the vendor no longer wants to deal with your company, your entire job could be at risk.

Don’t spend too much time together at work

In the end, the office is about getting work done. If you are spending a majority of your time with one particular co-worker, the perception could develop that you are not doing your job.

Always remain professional in the workplace

It would be great if you both continue to enjoy the relationship, but should it end in a breakup, you should treat that moment with extra- special care so that it doesn’t interfere with work. 

Use common sense 

Always treat the person, the relationship and your job with the utmost respect they all deserve.

Latest video

DON'T MISS THIS LIMITED-TIME OFFER1 5 months for only $1Save on Unlimited Digital Access