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7 common questions about workplace romance | The Way We Work, a TED series

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Should you date your coworker? Should workplace couples keep their relationships secret? And why are coworkers so often attracted to each other? Organizational psychologist Amy Nicole Baker shares the real answers to commonly asked questions about romance at the office.

The Way We Work is a TED original video series where leaders and thinkers offer practical wisdom and insight into how we can adapt and thrive amid changing workplace conventions. (Made possible with the support of Dropbox)

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44 Comments on 7 common questions about workplace romance | The Way We Work, a TED series


  2. Novabow John Mivule // 9th February 2019 at 2:30 pm // Reply

    Workplace Romance is a deathtrap for Men

  3. Spongebob SquarePants // 9th February 2019 at 2:30 pm // Reply

    Who else is single

    • Darrin Grooms // 9th February 2019 at 2:55 pm // Reply

      That’s ok, that’s normal

    • And not being flirted with? Lol!

    • Darrin Grooms // 9th February 2019 at 3:20 pm // Reply

      That’s normal too, lol see I disagree with this speaker that you can’t stamp out flirting in the workplace. Wholeheartedly, you definitely can.

    • +Darrin Grooms flirting, yeah because it can tie in to sexual harassment for people who don’t want to hear it. However, trying to stop and prohibit relationships between coworkers will lead to a worse work environment for everybody, so it should be allowed.

  4. Novabow John Mivule // 9th February 2019 at 2:31 pm // Reply


  5. Basically they’re a good thing if women want them and harassment if men want them

    • Exactly. I also hate when coworkers flirt. If you want to get a girlfriend/boyfriend do it in your own time. Not company time.

  6. DONT DIP YOUR PEN IN COMPANY INK…..old school but still in play. DONT DO IT…

  7. Necrotechnica // 9th February 2019 at 2:43 pm // Reply

    I learned everything i need to know about workplace romance from The Office.

  8. If their relationship is getting in the way of work then it should be discouraged, otherwise no, and if the relationship makes people happier and more productive than even better. And when the relationship ends somebody has to be fired, or both, or separated if the company has many locations.

  9. Mr. Person Humanson // 9th February 2019 at 2:52 pm // Reply

    Don’t date your co-worker when you’re self-employed in a family run company

  10. Christoph Münch // 9th February 2019 at 2:52 pm // Reply

    NEVER DATE A COWORKER! In times of “Me Too” simply too dangerous, too high probability of ruining your life. And even if you don’t get “metoo’ed” and she’s actually friendly – what is if your romance ends and working together becomes very awkward and problematic? JUST DON’T DO IT, PERIOD.

    • Christoph Münch // 9th February 2019 at 3:32 pm // Reply

      For women of course it’s much less dangerous because men don’t have that tendency to falsely accuse. They just better don’t expect the affair with the boss to become a permanent relationship 🙂

    • +Christoph Münch I think you vastly over estimate how many false accusations are made. Of course they do happen, and more from women than men (although that has a lot to do with other social issues, and not that some men wouldn’t do it if those issues were fixed), and there should be stricter punishments for it. But in the vast majority of cases, if you aren’t harassing her you aren’t going to get burned

    • Darrin Grooms // 9th February 2019 at 3:51 pm // Reply

      +Jolga Dirona Even if what you say is true about the false reports being over represented, I still do not think that is a wise choice to even put yourself into a position in which it COULD happen. If you want to find “love”, you can always look other places than the workplace.

    • +Darrin Grooms fair enough, but also keep in mind false reports happen across the board, there’s no stats to indicate work place relationships are more likely to result in false reports. So in that case you’re better off just not looking love, that’s the only way to stop that risk

    • +Jolga Dirona I agree, however the issue with metoo and other similar movements is that people tend to side with supposed victims before it’s proven that they are a victim. Harrassment allegations hold too much power when they are allegations, I feel. And unfortunately even just an unproven accusation can ruin a person’s life.

  11. Darrin Grooms // 9th February 2019 at 2:53 pm // Reply

    Or or or… Hear me out… Don’t

  12. When you start to fall in love with someone, everything else becomes secondary. I get what TED is trying to do here but if it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be. There rules may apply to causal dating but falling in love has no standard protocol

  13. how does this translate to an academic environment? even at the doctoral level I see advisors dating their graduate students and there’s no official policy or even casual understanding of how relationships should be considered.

    • 2 subs anytime there’s a workplace romance it ends in disaster, or just general disappointment followed by never speaking to each other again. Find love at the bar not your job

    • 2 subs It’s a temporary situation with your “superiors”, aka your teachers changing all the time, so maybe that’s what makes it seem less risky.

    • Liusila it’s more of a fetishizing of the power dynamics that makes it seem that way. You’re never truly equal

  14. Charlie's Cartoons // 9th February 2019 at 3:13 pm // Reply

    Workplace romance = how to get ahead by giving head

    • Charlie’s Cartoons Not really. Lots of people only meet new people at their jobs, so developing feelings is quite normal if you’re peers more or less.

  15. How about a NO in general to this topic…

  16. Darius Duesentrieb // 9th February 2019 at 3:38 pm // Reply

    Just watch The Office. Everything you need to know.

  17. To answer her question. “How do you make sure people are valued and respected”? Simply show them value and respect through recognition.

  18. Goljee Theyute // 9th February 2019 at 3:56 pm // Reply

    Cant fall in love if all the workers are robots

  19. Just stay single 4 life. F the human race.

  20. The Liberal Capitalist // 9th February 2019 at 4:35 pm // Reply

    Dating your coworker is a TERRIBLE idea in these times. One accusation and your career is over

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