At some companies, workplace dating is acceptable, but watch the PDA.

Dating a Coworker in a Different Department

by Genevieve Van Wyden

For unattached people working in a company with several departments, in some companies, it is now possible to begin dating coworkers. If this describes your situation and you’re still single, take a look around you -- a long, detailed look. Think of the guys in IT, payroll, marketing or customer service. When you think of someone who’s caught your eye, start sending or responding to those “I’m interested” signals, but be sure to check your company's policy first.

1. Scope Out Company Policies

Yes, it is possible -- and, in some companies -- even permissible to begin dating your coworkers, according to “Cosmopolitan.” Just remember, though, you do need to respect your employer’s policies on dating. These might include a ban on supervisors dating employees and no public displays of affection. Depending on your employer, you may also need to review your employee handbook to review the rest of the rules. One thing might be pretty clear -- getting to know a man from a different department is probably better than dating someone from your own department.

2. Get to Know Him in the Work Environment

You have one huge advantage by choosing to date someone who also works for your employer. You spend at least 8 hours a day with your coworkers. You get to know them pretty well. This means that, as you’re looking at that guy from the communications department, you have the chance to see how he handles different types of situations. Look at how he handles conflict with coworkers or his supervisor. How does he handle a stressful situation? Assess how he treats everyone, according to eHarmony.

3. About Dating Someone From a Different Department

You work in the payroll department and the man you’re crushing on works in communications. You don’t see each other every day during your workweek, but you may get to see each other often enough that you’re able to decide you want to expand your relationship to outside working hours. Because you don’t supervise each other, your employer is much less likely to tell you to put the kibosh on the admiring glances you give each other -- although you really should keep these to a minimum. Besides, it’s better than meeting each other over bruised cantaloupes in the produce department.

4. Inform Your Supervisor

Once you and your new significant other have decided you’re exclusive -- usually after a few months -- it’s time to talk to your respective supervisors. Even if your company doesn’t have an explicit instruction in its policy manual, by informing your supervisors, you’re telling them that you want to be aboveboard about your relationship with each other. As you tell your supervisor you’re dating someone in a different department, reassure her that your work comes first.

5. Beware the Office Gossip

Your office might have an office gossip or two embedded in your pool of coworkers. Once these people get even a hint that you’re dating someone from another department, rest assured that both of your names are going to become hot properties. If your significant other is someone that all the women have been angling to date, they could respond by feeling jealous. This could make office politics a consideration you never had to keep in mind before.

6. Consider Breakup Pitfalls

Not every workplace romance will survive. As you think of this, you need to remember that your own relationship might hit the skids. Even if your potential breakup doesn’t get nasty, it’s still going to be uncomfortable for you to sit across from your ex during meetings Think about how hard it would be to share duties on a shared project.

About the Author

I have always loved to write (developing an idea, research, putting the people, situations and setting onto the paper or keyboard). While I chose social work as my first career, I have always maintained the dream in my soul of writing "someday". My social work career ended, and after some years bouncing around in different fields, I decided to follow my old dream and returned to school. I earned my Journalism degree in December, 2006. I am currently in the process of outlining my first book and eagerly grabbing every chance I can to practice my craft. One of those opportunities is to submit a short story -- I am modifying the beginning of my book into a suitable short story, and I hope to submit (and see it in print) before very long.{{}}

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