How to Deal With Relationships in the Workplace/interest in co-worker

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Question
Hi Alice, there is mutual attraction between a colleague and I. I have known "Caprice" for a year now but I have not yet asked her out so this attraction hasn't really been tested. I sense that she is wanting me to ask her out and she is looking for a partner but I have hesitated. Reasons for this are that she is good friends with several of my colleagues (including my manager, and the Manager's secretary), knows other people in my organization, and many of my colleagues are her Facebook friends. I am concerned that even though I like this girl, we will have no privacy, everyone will hear and learn everything about our relationship, and if it doesn't work out, it could be very uncomfortable.

I feel as though if I don't ask her out, she will see me as rejecting her, but if we get together this is also difficult unless one of us changes jobs. Clearly I cannot know whether this relationship will work out until I get more involved with her. But to do that I have to ask her out. She is quite shy and relatively inexperienced and I know that it will be up to me to be the one to do the asking out. She won't do it.

Alice, I would be so grateful for your advice on this please.

Many thanks

David

Answer
Hi David,

Life is short.  If you are interested in this girl, ask her to join you for coffee break or lunch.  Assuming she says yes, spend time getting to know each other. If the first get together goes well, continue to have public place get togethers, meeting as friends.

You raise legitimate concerns about having a relationship with this young lady.  But, there's too much information you don't have to make any relationship decisions now.  If as you spend time together, you want to go beyond friendship, that is the time to discuss/establish privacy boundaries,what is and what is not appropriate; be it facebook postings, whatever.

Love is hard to find and compatible mates are not plentiful.  As adults, the two of you can work out how to keep your love life private and separate from your work life.  But first, you have to know if she is the girl for you, and you can't know that by sitting at your desk wondering if it would or wouldn't work.

Take care.  I wish you well.

Alice J. Bogert

How to Deal With Relationships in the Workplace

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alice bogert

Expertise

I can field questions related to employee-employee relationship issues as well as employee-manager relationship issues.

Experience

I supervised staff at the county and federal level for over 25 years. I have extensive experience dealing with employee disputes, management employee disagreements, morale issues, managing change, etc. I teach a variety of leadership and conflict resolution classes.

Organizations
National Association of Retired Federal Employees, Business Women of America.

Education/Credentials
I have a Masters Degree in Sociology.

Awards and Honors
Three Quality Step Merit Awards for Excellence while employed with the federal government. Numerous awards for training classes I've done.

Past/Present Clients
Private industry, Los Rio Community College District, federal, state and county government

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