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ImagePersonal relationships at the workplace need to be carefully handled without letting them affect one's professional conduct. Avinash Iyer tells you a few things that need to be kept in mind.

While the office is a place for new relationships to be forged, many a time existing personal relationships get extended into the official domain. So it is not uncommon to find husbands and wives, school/ college sweethearts and friends and blood relatives sharing tasks and responsibilities at the workplace. Some people find it easy to work with their kith and kin around while the others find it a tad awkward. The fact is that such a possibility cannot be ruled out and one must be equipped to deal with it.

'Personal' experience
Software professional Rahul S and his girlfriend have been working at the same office for the past two years, albeit in different teams. He says, "We never let our personal and professional equations mix up. While at work we ensured that our conduct was in keeping with the corporate discipline." He adds, "It is advisable to avoid intersection of individual and professional issues, else it leads to strife in both the aspects of one's life." In case of couples working at the same workplace it is best advised to clearly demarcate personal and corporate lives. If both threaten to spill into one another there may be only chaos and loss of peace of mind.

Keeping it simple
Here are some of the ways in which one can deal with personal relationships at the workplace.
Common code of conduct: At the office, everyone should be treated in accordance with the office rules, then be it just a colleague or someone whom we know personally as well. Showing favouritism or partisan behavior at work is the last thing one is expected to do. After all at the workplace everyone is working towards a common objective.

Love at work
While it may be a good feeling to have one's romantic partner in the same office, it is a good idea to avoid frequently meeting up or excessively bumping into each other when at work. It can not only distract the people involved in the relationship but also other co-workers who witness these 'chance' encounters. Besides there are cafeterias in most offices where one can generally meet without interfering in others' work.

Also, getting physical or intimate within office premises is considered an offence and can invite strict action from the higher-ups. Such conduct could also prove to be blemish on one's career. No nepotism: Favouring one's relatives at work is also something that should be avoided. One cannot and should not let any other parameter be counted at the workplace other than pure merit. There are times when one may get away with nepotism but more often than not it is noticed by other employees and it reflects negatively on the organisation's culture.

Friends forever
The best of school and college friendships at times sour once they reach the corporate boardroom. One reason for this is that while during academic years these friends would share every secret, the same would not be the case once they are in the corporate world. Such issues then get blown up and egos get bruised, friendship then is the final casualty. Besides, with new relationships being formed at the workplace one does not even realise that some old things have been left behind.

The final say
It is crucial for every employee to realise that observing corporate discipline and working towards the success of the organisation is of primary importance. And in order to maintain this, personal relationships at the workplace should be handled sensitively. There may be moments where personal ties may take precedence over professional ties or vice-versa; at such times it is left best to the discretion of the person involved to decide what is right for him/ her.

By Avinash Iyer, MUMBAI MIRROR

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