Romance @ Workplace – Cupid Strikes

What will happen if your boyfriend/spouse joins your organization and becomes your co-worker?

Hi Amit,

Since last 2 years I am working in the sales department of a reputed organization in the advertising sector. Sometime back my organization advertised a vacancy in the operations department. Looking at the role and the qualifications, I am pretty sure that my boyfriend is suitable for this job and will get selected if he applies for the same. If he clears the hiring process, he would join my organization in mid July and as a result we will end up working together on the same floor. He will be helping me with all the back up support I need for closing any client call. That ways we will be in constant touch with one another on the job.

What are your views on this arrangement? I know he is capable and will be selected, however in case I recommend his name to the hiring manager will it impact me in any sense? I want people to perceive that my recommendation is purely on requirement basis and not on account of he being my boyfriend. 

What actions I must take to assure my employer that we will both maintain a professional relationship at workplace? 


I am not sure whether your current organization ALLOW couples to work together.

If they have a policy of not hiring relatives, friends etc, REFRAIN from recommending him to your current employer.

Do check from your HR on this one

While many organization these days ENCOURAGE employees to refer their spouses, friends, cousins etc for internal vacancies, they also ensure that they both work in different departments. This is done so that there is no conflict of interest between them. 

Hiring people from internal references can be seen as a STRATEGIC move as it helps in checking the growing attrition level in the organization. It is been observed that people who are hired by internal references, tend to stay more than a normal hire.

If there is a policy by which you can refer him internally, go ahead and forward your boyfriend’s application to the hiring manager putting a word or two supporting his candidature. 

In case he gets selected you both will get plenty of time to work together. :)

One important thing to keep in mind is that you should work within the boundaries of professionalism and not INDULGE in any act which may make others around you feel uncomfortable at the workplace (I hope you are understanding my point here).

Life is full of uncertainty and I am not aware about your future plans, whether you both wish to get married or not. God forbid in case you guys decide to separate or break up, you need to address such a situation without messing up things around you. I don’t know so I can’t comment on how much emotionally you guys are attached to each other however in such a situation, react maturely without bringing your personal problems to work.

Sit down and think from all perspectives before taking any decision.

Some of my inputs are mentioned below:-

a) Do you both actually want to work with each other? I mean to say whether you both are willing to share your professional space with each other. There are possibilities that after answering this question majority of your problem will get solved. Do an honest discussion and anticipate events that may occur if you both start working together.

b) Relationships are short lived these days. In case your relationship ends, who will be the one to leave the job to find another in case there are lot of differences and things turn worse between the two of you.  

c) I understand when love is in the air, certain things go beyond your control. You guys need to plan on your behavior and reaction at workplace. I know it may sound difficult but you need to conceal your emotions and feeling with a mask of professionalism. You both need to understand that at workplace you are first committed to your job and then to yourselves.

d) If you share a good rapport with your boss I would advise you to keep him in the loop and that your boyfriend will be working with you in case he gets selected. That ways you have taken him into confidence. 

e) Office romances sometimes become the topics discussed in tea breaks or on lunch table. Maintain your dignity so that you do not become the subject of entertainment for others. 

Folks in office love gossip. As one coworker said,”I know that’s a false rumor, but it’s just too juicy not to believe.”

Go forward and work out your way. I would request other people to also share their views and help our fellow member to come to some conclusion. Please drop your comments below :)

  • Sachin says:

    Hi Amit,

    Its nice to see her concern about his boy friend, but as far i have seen and experienced about the relationship and the professional life things will get messed up in relationship part, not because you are trying hard just because people involve you in official politics and start making rumors, seniors look towards you, your opinion and your approach toward your work, i just want to say if your relation is with you in your organization then your senior will always point you out for your work and your credibility, it doesn’t make any difference to them they want point and you are giving them simple…what they want you are offering them as a gift to kick yourself out of the organization so i don’t think its a good point to be in same organization…it will create mess in your good life.

    If you want to see the best way is to “GET YOUR RELATION UNDER ONE ROOF OF PROFESSIONALISM”

    ITS MY PERSONAL OPINION DON’T TAKE IT PERSONALLY just think more from your relationship point also, because office is graveyard for relationships.


  • Christina says:


    I have some different perception on this point.

    1. First of all you have to focus on your expectation. Whether you like to bring him for enhancing your romance at work life or you like to bring him so that he needs a better transition? Based on your objective set your strategy. Be sure that you have to deal everything with professional attitude. It is better not to mix up personal life into professional life specially if it is in the same department.

    2. Do you agree that everybody needs to maintain their own privacy? If agreed then this is also a big concern. In every relationship you need to maintain your own perception and own stand, own point of view which may conflict between you and he regarding your working style, pattern, decision making style mixing with colleagues etc.

    3. This is very tough for an individual to control emotional situations. So sometimes it might appear as the problem between both of you also.

    4. If your policy supports then you can just make him apply but persuasion might cause a different impression at your work life.

    If I would be at your place, I would never want my life partner to be involved in my working life. If relations grows up while working that’s a different case. I hope you will not be dishearten on my points.

    Best wishes

  • Fatema says:

    I would agree to Amit where he rightly points out that its all about creating a professional boundary at work place and a clear and practical communication among the two regarding the pros and cons of the same.

    I would like to add that its a risk which both of you have to be ready for and bear its fruits which can be either sweet or sour. The level of emotional bond you couple share is of utmost importance as it would reflect onto your professional bond and understanding of the same.

    To give it another perspective if you think that you both can remove enough remove time for each other and for the growth of the relationship then then the decision of joining the same company can be re-considered as your boyfriend would be equally qualified for other companies as well. Or if as a couple you would be busy with your hectic work schedules and will not be able to remove time for each other then you both should go ahead with the decision of working together provided there is a clear discussion among the two regarding the same.

    From the perspective of your company both of you could be in the lime-light of your senior and sub-ordinates which may work in your favor or it can work as a counter-action, so both need to establish good working rapport with others as well and at the same time give that personal and professional space to each other at your work-place.

    Working together is not a big deal provided you both use communication as the key.

    It would be a learning experience as a couple and at the end it has to be a mutual decision.

    All the best.
    Fatema.RCounseling Psychologist.

  • Rudra Prasanna says:

    Both of you will be working different departments (Sales & Ops.) in the company. Hence there will be no role clash. It is good if both of you can work in the same company where no intervention of the personal life in the work place. Nice idea. Your friend can try his luck.

    Rudra Prasanna
    Management Consultant

  • Prerna says:

    Its important to maintain a difference between your personal and professional life. Don’t mess up by mixing the two. Its very kind of you to support your boyfriend and recommend his candidature. I suggest that either you try and place him in some other department in your company, where both of you are not working together or start looking out for another workplace for him or yourself.


  • Amna says:

    If he is so talented then he can get job anywhere easily.I think he should try somewhere else so that your professionalism remains maintained.If he is coming to give u protection at workplace then it is ok.But make sure this security does not become interference for u.

  • Mark, London says:

    Your boyfriend maybe a capable, intelligent fellow, but how do you know he will be the best candidate? You don’t. Why would the boss, experienced at selecting staff, need or welcome your recommendation? Why should the boss be happy to take on a potential problem – what if some other girl at the office fancies your boyfriend? What if you break-up? I am assuming you work in a medium to large organisation. On the other hand, if you work in a small, family type company, the boss might be quite receptive to the idea. Good Luck!

  • Amit Bhagria says:

    Thanks Mark for bringing up so many vital questions on the surface. One really needs to have a forward looking approach.

  • Amit Bhagria says:

    Hitting the Bulls Eye Prena :)

  • Jassi says:

    Hai Amit,

    Me and my husband both working in same organisation and in same department and we are maintaining the professional and personal gap with each other. That’s also true when your spouse/boyfriend working in same organisation it helps and supports a lot each other.

    Recommendation is good, but it should be followed when the your boyfriend had a capabilities to join the organisation or he clears the step by step interview process and regarding your query “when you have to maintain the professional gap between two, it is to recommend that don’t tell your superior about your relationship” and if he joins your organisation, then the gap should be maintain between two of you.



  • Amit Bhagria says:

    Hi Jassi,

    I think people should learn from you on how to handle such situations with sheer professionalism. Great going :)


  • Victoria says:

    Hi ,

    The truth is, first read your organization’s HR manual before taking any step to recommend your spouse in the organization in any position.Sometimes its the organizational policy not to hire people who are related in anyway .This can even be too serious to the extent that,even sisters and brothers or friends are not allowed.

    Therefore if you go ahead to recommend them, you stand a chance of not making it possible for them to be hired.That is why, some organizations ask applicants(interviewee ) if they know anyone in the organization or even how they got to know about the offer especially if the organization made an internal job Advertisement, so as to eliminates such relationships within the organization.

    The only step you can take can be;inquiring the view of the person hiring on a certain applicant in a very tricky way not to necessarily show side but probably know what he talks about your spouse.

    For example,”I think the applicant in the white shirt(your spouse) looked capable and descent for that job”……..”How did you see him?” and what of the one in the light pink shirt……This will help not to show side where you fall.

    But you can only do this if you know the personality of the person hiring because it may sound like you are telling them what to do or whom to hire.

    Best regards

  • Norbert, Ghana says:

    I personally think relationships like yours at the workplace are generally problematic. Believe it or not we are human, and once love is concerned, you will have to compromise some of your work ethics and principles when dealing with your boyfriend. Such biases will soon be exposed to co-workers and that will surely be the beginning of your problems.

    But the most important question is: how would you handle a breaking relationship with your boyfriend and still be able to maintain your performance to save your job? Remember these days good jobs are difficult to get.

  • Suman says:

    If i were you, i will not mix business with relation…business comes first for me …so i would simply not refer…to avoid unnecessary problems..

  • Akura says:

    Discussing the issue will do you better and help you make the decision, otherwise its not easy especially if you are in the same office and working closely.

  • John Kennedy says:

    Hi, I think sometimes our emotions/emotional bonds can take us away from the purpose. Sometimes it can also make us blind to the realities. I think you are compelled to satisfy your emotional demand to have your boyfriend to be with you even at your work place. I think we should not entertain our personal relationship with the business. It may work or it may not work. Therefore, first you need to check what forces you to recommend your boyfriend to be with you at your work place and secondly you need to check whether the work culture in your organization permits and encourages it. So take sometime to study and evaluate, and decide the best that will protect and promote your, your boyfriend’s and the organization’s interests. There should not be a conflict of interests. All the best.
    John Kennedy

  • kadeemgray90 says:

    As Amit said, its very important that the policy of the organization is checked before making that recommendation. And even if there’s no policy against it, examine the culture to see how well others function in such an environment. Though you may not see where there’s a conflict of interest, some may be introduced by virtue of being in the same working environment. My organization doesnt have a policy against it but one will see where there are covert implications on the individuals’ performance and even their general interaction with others is affected. My suggestion, if it can be avoided, avoid it!


  • Gladys Muloongo says:

    Hi! Relationships and work are never compatable. Thats just a fact. Its good to be real when giving advice of such kind. These are TWO different masters that cannot be served simuteanously. Work usually suffers because emotions be positive or negative are hard to conceal.
    Its so easy to be misunderstood by colleagues, bosses especially when it comes recommendations by a spouce, fair judgement and critisisms.Its hard to look at a spouce as a mare workmate during working hours. Some people are too jealous to see their spouce in closer contacts with others. One becomes too aware of their spouses presence causing unnecessary anxieties which might lead to many mistakes.
    Since you say your boyfriend is well qualified, let him look elsewhere. We need to be free at our work places where we spend most of time and freshen up with our spouces after work.
    If you feel you can beat all these odds. Go a head. You have my blessings.

  • hontflow says:

    Its a good decision that you want to get a job for your boyfriend…your intentions are ok…but you need to consider his kind of person…you guys have been together for a while now so I expect you should know one or two things about him, is he the jealous type? you have to be sincere to yourself..if he doesn’t accept any rubbish..there will be issues on daily basis you always have to iron out …best of luck

  • mathias ambali says:

    Hi Amit, i liked your comment, “im not sure whether your organisation allow couples to work together.” I believe that if this works well with others, it cannot work for everyone because we are different in personality. The issue of conflict of interest cannot also be ruled out.I dont think an organisation that allow hiring of friends, relatives and couples can deliver services effectively because efficiency may be compromised due to lack of dedication . So, it is not proper that couples should work in the same organisation.

  • Caryl says:

    It is not advisable for a couple to work in the same department of an organisation. Love emotions can get people to put the company’s interest second place. Will any of you stand seeing your partner flirting around with other employees???? An employee needs to be focused, but having a relationship with a co-worker can push one out of focus. So you really have to rethink the idea of working together with your boyfriend.

  • chizeey says:

    My dear, Please be careful, it is not safe. In due course sentiment and emotions will begin to over rule you. Definitely, it will not work out as you think wether you will be married in future or not. Can you afford to see him play or joke with other female colleagues? If you can answer this, it might help you to decide what you want.

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