Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Office Nooky

Happy Tuesday!

Yeah, you read that right - Office Nooky. Office romances. Love in this cube.

This subject came up twice yesterday in private conversations I had with 2 different people, so figured I'd give it some thought. Normally I'd say don't dip your pen in company ink. I should know, I've done it. More than once. The first time it was kinda sticky...the second time, not so much. I don't think I'd do it again - but hey...you never know. A&E frowns upon fraternizing, so if I DID do it again, it wouldn't be here. Nothing kills a fling like "you're fired!" I don't think I've met any sex THAT good!

...what? we grown right?


Anyway, I do know of some office romances that came full bloom. They kept it a well-hidden secret...until we got the wedding invitation. Office romances CAN turn into something more. After all, you spend most of your time with the people you work with, so it breeds a great environment for getting to know someone. And if you're one of those people that can't get enough of your boo, then working together is the ideal situation (even though that might be overkill for me).

So, IF you are going to do it, may I suggest you follow some rules? Not that I'm an expert...but since I've been in this situation a couple times before, I'll give you the "RULES" according to Brooke.

Rule #1: KNOW THE RULES

Check your company's handbook and read thoroughly what it says about inter-office dating. I don't think A&E minds if you date, but if you get married, one of you has to leave the company. If there's a strict "no inter-office" dating rule - and you care about your job - then don't do it. Keep your pen in your pocket :)

Rule #2: KNOW YOUR CO-WORKER

Do your homework. Is your potential new fling single? Is he/she one NOT to kiss and tell? Has he/she dated other people in the company before? Is he/she related to your boss? (yikes!) If there's smoke, RUN!

Rule #3: NO MEANS NO

If you ask him/her out and they say no - bounce! That's it. Done. Over. If they're not feeling you, don't press the issue any further. You don't want to get sued and you don't want to become the creepy office stalker. We WILL talk about you.

Rule #4: CREATE A WORKPLACE "PRENUP"

If y'all DO decide to go there, have a conversation first about expectations and boundaries. Discuss what will happen if y'all are "found out," or if one of you has to leave the company or the department. You might find that after this conversation, it may not be worth it. But if it is, use the "prenup" as your guide.

Rule #5: DON'T FISH IN THE SAME POND


Maybe it's best you at least try to date someone in a different department, or a different office. This way you don't really have to see each other everyday ALL day and no one will get suspicious of you two. If you DO date someone in your department, you may want to nip it in the bud and tell your boss so there are no surprises...unless your company policy strictly forbids office dating.

Rule #6: IF YOU MUST DATE, DATE "UP"


I know you may disagree with this, but it's easier to get fired than to get sued for sexual harassment. And stay away from temps and interns. You may think that because they don't "technically" work for the company, the same rules in the company handbook don't apply to them...because most likely they do. Don't pull a Bill Clinton - leave the interns alone.

Rule #7: KEEP YOUR BUSINESS TO YOURSELF


Don't go running your mouth blabbing to everyone and they mama about the hot new guy in accounting you're banging, or the cute administrative assistant you're smashing. No grabbing each other's ass as they walk by, no kissing in the elevator, no googly eyes in meetings. People WILL notice AND they'll have no problem telling your business. Don't become the water cooler gossip.

Rule #8: NO "HOT" MAIL

I know this seems obvious, but you'd be surprised how many people don't follow this rule. Don't use company email to exchange love letters or to tell your boo what you're going to do to him that night or anything remotely suggestive. If you think your company can't or won't monitor your emails, think again. Use a private web-based email service like Yahoo or save all the juicy exchanges for after work.

Rule #9: NO DRUNK DATING

Be careful at the company holiday party. One too many drinks can cause you to drop your guard and lose focus. Too many people have gotten fired cuz they don't know how to act at the company shindig.

Rule #10: YOUR CUBE OR MINE?


Uh...HELLO?! NEITHER!! As much fun as it may be to have sex on your boss' desk or in the conference room, for goodness sakes y'all...GET A ROOM! No "relations" in the OFFICE. PERIOD.

Now that I've ruined all the fun, is it still worth it? Who knows...but at least you'll keep your job...and your dignity :-)

-b

28 comments:

Latinegro said...

Um...FIRST BITCHESSSSSSS!!!!!

Latinegro said...

I would agree with all these rules. I wish I could say I never messed around with someone at a place of employment...

But,yes people will talk about you. I have seen office romances and we will talk.

Nothing wrong with temps...lol

Brooke said...

Uh, YOU of all people should know about working with your boo :)

LOL!!

Latinegro said...

...and look how that turned out..lol

Annamaria said...

Brooke GREAT RULES!!!! Although I can't talk too much crap. Austin & I met at work years ago. BUT things were different & we waited til we didn't work together to get to where we at now. All in all I think things turned out pretty darn good!

momo925 said...

I have never had an office romance nor will I ever. I find that the workplace is no place to look for love lol. It's just too close for comfort. Great rules Brooke! I think I will still pass :-)

Yolanda said...

Another rule...
DENY
DENY
DENY!

"Huh, me and who? You're joking right?"
(*secretly touching him under the conference table*)

Tiswana said...

Brookey,
Hmmm...I remember how you said you used to love having "lunch" in the conference room. That is until they renovated it and added glass walls. Now we know!

Anonymous said...

I had a case of office nooky and it turned out horrible. I was younger and a supervisor and I should not have done it as this woman I had this fling with was not very talented and wanted me to cover her shortcomings.

I will never do it again, no matter how good the woman looks.

Brooke said...

Tiswana got mad jokes!! LOL!!

Annamaria, you two did things the right way. My friend Val met her husband at work too...both lawyers for the city. So it CAN work.

Mo, I hear you. You and I already talked about this one ;)

Yolanda, you stupid :) But I agree, lie til a new world's been built! LOL!

Anonymous - lesson learned huh?

Anonymous said...

I see you took me up on my blog topic - now you just need to take me up on my work place romance offer ;) I don't even work in your city, let alone the same building or dept.

You look cute today by the way ;)

-V- said...

I always used to wait 'til they quit (or got fired) and take them out for "Farewell Cocktails."

No fuss, no muss.

Brooke said...

V- good idea! Never thought of that, hmmmmm.....

Yolanda said...

I've done it three times (once was just a date, the 2nd time was a several year friends w/ bennies thing and the third is on-going - though I got a new job when my division folded)... as long as you're discreet about it and that person doesn't work in your immediate department, you can make it happen.

It may not be recommended but think about it, you spend at least 40 hours a week in the workplace, it's bound to happen. You work at the same place, chances are you have similar interests and goals, and where else are you supposed to meet people these days...? On CraigsList?

AH said...

LOL!!!! I've actually had an Office Romance...actually, he worked in a different department but his line of work required him or another worker to come over often. It was an open relationship with the understanding--don't disrespect me by hitting on someone else in the office/my friends while we're together. Yeah...so what...we violated rule #10....*sneaky grin* but we had doors. Sue me! Unfortunately, we had a lot of mutual friends at work...(which mutal friends and dating is a WHOLE different blog) and many people figured it out. That aspect didn't matter because there was no policy and we were adults. What was funny...is we (office workers in my suite/department) would often close our doors for lunch....which means: we aren't here, come back later, send an email, etc. If my (then new) interim boss thought my "friend" was there, he would keep knocking on the door for about 2 minutes...which is a long time to knock....and I would just ignore it. The first time it happened, I opened it and all he wanted was to tell me Starbucks was giving the next day....sooooo that info couldn't wait till after lunch???....(nosey butt). Other times, we were continue eating our lunch, watching youtube or whatever. We were smart enough not to violate #10 DURING office hours especially considering I was on the ground floor and the blinds didn't completely over the windows.

As for Rule #2....he ended up telling me he had dated another person in the department (in neither one of our specific offices) 6 months before we started hard core hanging out.....long story short, she saw the attraction starting and had no nice words for me...of course, all behind my back. He waited to tell me once he realized that she and I were just work worked for the same people...no interaction and no friendship outside of large group happy hours/holiday parties/etc and that he and I may have actually gone somewhere (in the relationship). They had been completely over for about a year. She ended up switching jobs (not because of him)....about a year later I switched jobs....our up/down/on/off involvement lasted a little over 3 years. I don't regret it because it did get pretty serious....but ended HORRIBLY...but we got close again in 2007 as JUST FRIENDS (even though he'll hint at more....I enjoy our friendship just like this)....however, I DO regret how many mutual co-worker friendships we had while I was working there....that was the worse part of things....but...that's another blog for another day....

Brooke said...

Yolanda, I agree with you about where to meet people nowadays. Anyone who knows me knows I work long hours. Couple that with the fact that I'm disengaged from the "club" scene and Craig's list is looking pretty good right about now :) I meet people in unexpected places when I least expect it, but not often enough. Work is the only place I spend a significant amount of time and mingle with folks. So I hear you. Too bad all the men at A&E are either married or gay.

AH - I'm shocked at your story! LOL!! **sneaky grin** ? I violated my own rule #10 myself, but I was 22 and simple :) Was fun tho! I was gonna save that lil nugget for TMI Tuesday - but...today IS Tuesday right? :)

Anyway, I guess if the two people involved are mature and sane, then it can work with no hard feelings. But it's hard if you catch feelings and have to see that person everyday. I still think it's best to date someone at work who is at least on another floor or building. If they're in your dept. that could be a disaster.

Oh, and if he's a "serial office dater" then no...no haps. The dude (or girl) who makes his way around at work is just gross...no discretion.

Sounds like AH has a few blogs for another day brewing :)

The Cable Guy said...

Well, as the cable guy, I meet women at work all the time. You'd be surprised how these women come to the door - dressed, not dressed. I don't mess around with customers though because if something goes wrong, then Time Warner will be up my ass :)

One woman locked me in her place! I had to call Time Warner to send someone to get me out! LOL!!

You're the only woman who I considered worthy to break my rule. And you came to the door in an Eagles jersey, sweats and a scarf on your head at 8:30 in the morning...looking adorable as ever. I'd STILL break my rule for you Brookeybaby!

DMurray said...

Office Nooky, Brooke we have to get you out of the office!! You must be eyeing one of the new interns. Well let's just say in the Army you have no time for that. I mean don't get me wrong sometimes there are a bunch of honeys in your office. In my case most of them end up working for me and calling me Sir all day. Protocol dictates a couple of other customs and courtesies that have to be strictly adhered to in the office as well. Like when I speak to a subordinate they should standup at the position of attention and talk. They also must announce to everyone that I am entering or leaving the building for the day! As drunk as I could get with power and as many cutie pies that I have had work for me, I could not even ask them out on date!!! And they dare not flirt with me!

Dating someone of equal rank is not too different. You want to keep your business to yourself. Bottom line you don't sleep with the help; ever! I barely wanted to date a woman on the same military base. As a matter of fact my fiance (another SU alum!) was on a base about 2 hours away Korea when we were dating.

Brooke said...

I'm sure dating in the military is a strict no-no D, I can't even imagine.

and no, not eyeing any interns! I already told you, NO INTERNS.

Besides, all of our interns are female ;)

I'm safe in the office, trust me.

Cable guy, I was looking BUSTED that day! and I STILL bagged you? LOL!! That was funny :)

Rameer said...

I'm smooth as hell with mine. I've had 3 women I worked with that I've hooked up with...and to this day, NO ONE at my job knows. They've spent years trying to guess who I've messed with...which is impossible, cuz I'm ALWAYS real cool with all the ladies, and don't actually act any different with any of them in public. And the women I'm cool with tend to speak glowingly of me...so the women I'm NOT close with and the gossipy men are always speculating on who I've done or am doing the deed with.

The rule is - whomever you guess I'm with, I'm not. One woman I thought was pretty blatant about - I even TRIED to tell people. No one got it until she didn't work there for like a year and we had been over. Idiots...

As far as interns go - I've never violated that line, and doubt I would. But the Panamanian intern is soooooo tempting it ain't even funny...

The funny instance of a office nooky - the only time I've actually REALLY revealed a workplace dalliance - it was actually a woman who didn't work with me. She was associated with my media group (it's independent of my job). She used to come to some of the production meetings of a show I used to work on. She was BAD...I mean, the dudes used to trip over their tongues for her. Oddly enough, these jabronis never noticed she ALWAYS sat next to or real close to me. And always was looking for me if I wasn't in the room...but she was pretty discreet.

One time this chick in the meeting goes off and tries to call me out like I couldn't get a chick of her caliber (this woman had an over-inflated sense of herself...she looked like a bulldog. All she had was a big a$$...but I digress). As this argument gets sillier and stupider, I let her know that the women I've dated...she isn't even as attractive as their pinky toes. She starts going on about how any guy can say that and usually does when he ain't got no bad chicks, etc.

I let my anger overtake the situation..."why the hell do you think SHE'S here every week?!?" I blurted out as I pointed in her direction. "She ain't hear to see YO Rottweiler a$$, that's for sure!"

Chick - stunned. Room - stunned. Woman I was dealing with? Highly amused (and making a quick exit, I might add).

That's the only time I ever admitted dealing with anyone around the job...and I had to field questions for weeks on that "how long you been messing with her? Damn, you was mad smooth with that - you ain't say nothing when we used to talk about her/kick it to her."

I don't know if I recommend office nooky, and can't say I've done it a lot. But I HAVE done it, and HAVE followed Brooke's rules...and I've never had it be an issue.

Brooke said...

Rameer, you always got mad stories! LOL!!

why don't you guest for me on Friday - Craig is busy :)

Rameer said...

I thought about it...But I don't think I can. These people at work are kicking my a$$ with projects. Tell you what...if I can write it and get it to you tonight, then all good. Otherwise, count me off the list of potentials...

Brooke said...

Deal :-)

Serena W. said...

I did it once...bad move. I was young and dumb (23 to be exact). Ever since then it's a big no no for me.

I agree with the rules too...one more to add. No doing the do in the parking lot at your job. Move the dag on car at least lol!

Brooke said...

LMAO!!

The parking lot Serena???

Serena W. said...

Hey I've seen some stuff and I'm like (come on...not in the office parking lot)! LOL!

DMoe said...

Wow.

Hopefully, these rules fall in our "common sense" wheelhouse collectively. But, as history has shown us, even when the 10 commandments were etched on stone tablets by god's hand, placed next to a burning bush, and "world premiered" by Moses, folks were STILL clowning.

Honestly, Biggie's 10 crack commandments are also quite applicable to the worklove scenarios. Feel free to peruse the Life after death for a refresher. The similarity is startling - really.

Meanwhile, there's also the part where somebody forgets who they are, as well as WHERE they are when an argument/disagreement goes down. Basically, your BS at home is now at work too. No escape.

Brooke's rules seemed to be for "Good times" but what about the stick of Dyn-O-mite when things go bad?? Now, That's when it gets dicey.

Excellent information, but hopefully that was one you've already grown on.

Stay thirsty my friends.

DMoe aka Slim Beam

Georgia Peach said...

Just wanted to stop by and say hi. Like the new look. I'm so far behind on all the blog reading, but I'll try to get back into it when I'm on vacation next week!

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