Resume Writing, Career Advice and Job Search blog from ResumeWriting.com.
It’s Valentine’s Day again, and so to mark the occasion, CareerBuilder released a survey of workplace romance.
Some of the key data points?
- Thirty-nine percent of workers said they have dated a co-worker at least once over the course of their career.
- Three in Ten Workers Who Had Office Romances Married Their Co-Worker.
- 29 percent of workers who have dated someone at work said they have dated someone above them in the company hierarchy, and 16 percent admitted to dating their boss.
- The number one place that office romance starts? After work happy hour.
But to us, the most surprising finding was this one:
Thirty-five percent reported they had to keep the relationship under wraps.
We would have thought that number would be way, way higher. As office-place amore can lead to HR nightmares, plenty of companies at least disapprove of co-worker romances. Some companies are so strict that the revelation of a personal relationship can be grounds for immediate termination.
How many of you have had an office romance? And how many of you have had to hide it?
A better question might be: how many romances do you think are going on in your office right now?
How can you spot a covert office couple? Here are 10 surefire signs:
The Flirting Stops
Does your office have an obvious and notorious Pam and Jim? Always flirting, always together? What if suddenly the giggles and goo-goo eyes stop? That’s a good indication that the flirting has gone to the next level of an actual relationship and both parties are consciously or subconsciously trying to keep things under wraps.
By the same token, if the office lothario suddenly stops his advances, it could be that he’s gotten a talking to from HR. Or… it could be that he’s finally snagged someone in the office.
They Never Get To Work, Or Leave Work, At The Same Time
If two people are still trying to keep a relationship under wraps, they’re not going to want you to know they spent last night together. So they’re still likely arrive to work in separate cars, even if that means they had to drop by and pick up the other person’s car.
Also, the couple in question might be heading home for a snuggly night of Netflix streaming, but they will make sure to stagger their departure times to ensure plausible deniability.
Lots Of Inside Jokes
Have you ever been around people that seem to laugh at each other’s eye rolls and seemingly unsaid jokes? If two co-workers are so on the same wavelength that they seem to be reading from a private joke book, then you have to wonder when and where those jokes got started.
They’re Too Formal
We all know people in the office who have obvious chemistry. Work might have brought them together, but you get the sense that they’d be pals in the real world too. They’re chummy, chatty and completely simpatico.
But if you see just such a couple suddenly and ostentatiously being formal and professional to each other at work, then you have to wonder why. If the pals suddenly stop speaking to each other, then they might be compensating to hide a secret.
You Always Stumble Across Them Together
The same two people always at the coffee machine? The same two people always taking lunch together? Oh! What’s this? The supply room is occupied, and by the usual suspects? So many coincidences can’t be all that coincidental.
They Disappear At The Same Time
Your boss comes in and says, “Where’s Jim? Where’s Pam? Whenever I need one of them, I can’t find the other one either.” Mysteriously synchronized absences are a sure sign there’s some extra curricular scheduling going on.
The Same Two People Always Seem To Work Late
Sometimes the best place to hide an office romance is… in the office. If it’s after hours and the office is deserted, then that can be the perfect time for secret admirers to spend quality time together under the cloak of overtime or project deadlines.
Lots Of Time Behind Closed Doors
The same two people always work on projects together. Nothing suspicious about that. Maybe they’re a good team. But if they always find a way to “work” behind closed doors and drawn shades, then it might not be all work going on in there.
Vacation Days And Sick Days Coincide
Most people take their vacations around the same time every year. But isn’t it odd that he suddenly takes a week off in March?
That’s unusual. No one in the office has ever vacationed in March.
What’s more unusual is that she took a week off at the exact same time!
Sudden And Unlikely Office Allies
Sometimes the subtle changes in office politics can be a tip off about secret love affairs. One co-worker suddenly and energetically defends another in an strategy debate. Or a co-worker who has never been recognized for much is loudly and lavishly praised by another. Sudden and unusual office alliances/feuds can be a big tip-off that there’s more going on then you can see at the surface.