Me and my boss
It's reckoned that almost half of us have been romantically tied to someone from work, so the notion that you might fancy your boss at some time or other is hardly groundbreaking.
The boss-romance has the added spice of power, danger and excitement – or at least it does on a psychological level. So, the first thing you've got to really try and ask yourself is….would you fancy your boss if they weren't your boss?
Are you just falling for the person or the position? If it's the latter, you're probably playing a dangerous game and liable to be found out. If you're thinking this is the love of my life – and vice versa, then so be it, you've got to follow your instincts. It's undeniable that some bosses have achieved their position maybe because of a certain drive and charisma which is attractive, but once again, is that the real person or the work persona?
Where you're falling in love with the power and excitement, it could damage your professional reputation, cost you your job or result in sexual harassment charges. It's also more likely to end up with recriminations when it goes wrong.
The golden rule in all cases is, be discreet. That way nobody will know and if you're in love for all the right reasons, nobody will need to know anyway. If you're indiscreet there's bound to be office gossip and maybe jealousy. It also makes the issue of promotion much more tricky. Are you really being promoted because of your merits?
Just bear in mind, even if it is genuine there is always the possibility you'll have to keep working with your sweetheart after a breakup.
So, a great romance with your boss may be genuine and add a real zest to your life in which case, go for it. You already have something in common and possibly a shared group of objectives and friends and that's a lot more than many couples.
Boss attracted to you?
What happens if the attention is the other way around? Let's say your boss is taking an interest in you. Obviously it can't be because they are in love with your salary or influence as you are the subordinate, but there could still be a ‘power' thing going on.
As before, working with someone – or underneath them – at least allows you some insight into their character. The good news is that workplace relationships have a fairly high success rate; you're not dealing with a total stranger, after all. There are a few wise rules to try and keep to however. For example, try to steer clear of your direct boss or someone you have to report directly to. It can be very difficult for you to stay totally focused when things get tense.
If you're getting some attention you need to know if it's genuine or imagined – or simply your boss being nice. A few handy tips to watch out for include: Is your boss crossing paths with you more than normal? Is your boss getting little things done for you? Does your boss begin to remember small details about you? These are all small things, but probably sincere ways for your boss to take an interest in you, rather than through overblown displays of affection.
So, if your boss is showing an interest in you – and you're not unhappy with the situation, then why rush? Take things slowly. If it's the real thing it can wait a little while and give you some space to mentally weigh the situation up – and what it could lead to. Evidence shows quite clearly that workplace couples whose relationships succeed were those who were more realistic about the relationship from the very beginning.