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Office romance- good or bad?

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By Meluse Kapatamoyo

Few, if any Zambian companies have any restrictions against office relationships. It is because of this reason that it is common to find couples, some married, working together. However, there are also some people who disapprove of these types of relationships.

It works for them

Melinda, an IT specialist, says working with her boyfriend of almost two years has worked wonders for their relationship.

“In the beginning it was awkward. We both tried to pretend we were still friends but it was hard. Some people picked up the signs, while others failed to because we tried to keep things as normal as possible, “she explained. “But in the end we decided it’s pointless to pretend because we were in love and had no reason to be ashamed. We didn’t have to tell anybody, they all just knew by the way we interacted. We always came in and left the office together.”

She said the reason their relationship was not a major issue was because both were discreet. Although everyone knew about their affair, no one ever saw them being intimate; “We are both professional people and know where to draw the line.”

When asked whether or not being in each others’ work space had had any negative effect on their relationship, she quickly replied: “That’s what I love about it. Learning together is another advantage of working with your partner. Besides that, I get to see him in a different sphere especially since he was recently promoted and is now my boss.”

Different view

But Katongo Changaala disagrees and thinks office romances should never be encouraged. She said faced with the situation, she would weigh both options and choose what’s more important, the relationship or her career.

“An organisation is a formal work structure where being professional and getting the job done is the name of the game. Office relationships come with emotional attachments, and possible conflicts, which may affect your colleagues.”

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