Pachter's Pointers:
Business Etiquette Tips & Career Suggestions


For Valentine’s Day, 7 Suggestions About Office Romance

Valentine’s Day is upon us once again, and that means there may be romance in the air at your workplace. Yet, how do you and your significant other share a copier by day and a bedroom by night without hurting your professional image?

Since I am asked that question fairly often, I am reposting my blog from last year. Here are 7 guidelines to help people in office romances avoid conflict and other situations that could negatively impact their careers:

1. Keep the relationship private. Your coworkers do not need to know the details of your relationship. At some point, if your romance becomes serious and marriage is on the horizon, your coworkers should be informed before they receive the wedding invitation!

2. Your boss shouldn’t be your Valentine. Relationships are difficult enough without having your boss or a subordinate as your Valentine. If you are dating your boss, arrange to report to someone else; and if you are the boss, arrange to have your subordinate report to somebody else before you start dating.

3. Don’t let your guard down. It’s easy to let romance take over on Valentine’s Day. Displaying cards, balloons, flowers, Teddy bears and the like may let colleagues know about your love interest, but it may also make them very curious about who is sending you all these items.

4. Do not discuss your relationship on any social media sites. No posting information or photos on Facebook, or sending tweets about it. You never know who will see them.

5. No physical contact in the office. Do I really have to say this? No romantic displays in the office! No secret kissing, caressing, or hand-holding – and definitely no sex in the office. This extends to your behavior at office parties.

6. Maintain your other relationships. Don’t stop socializing with your colleagues. Stay involved with your network.

7. If the relationship fails, be professional and adult about it. Even if you have been jilted, you cannot vent your negative feelings in public. This is one of the drawbacks of office relationships – they sometimes don’t work out, but you have to continue to see or work with the person. No matter how you feel, you must continue to interact with him or her in a polite manner.

Pachter & Associates provides seminars and coaching on business etiquette and communication for organizations worldwide. Contact Joyce Hoff at 856.751.6141 or for more information.

Additional information can be found in my book, When The Little Things Count...And They Always Count.

And look for my new etiquette book coming this summer, The Essentials of Business Etiquette: How to Greet, Eat and Tweet Your Way to Success (McGraw Hill). You can reserve your copy now at Amazon


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