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Dating the boss

(47 Posts)
Fucketyfuck Wed 13-Nov-13 21:19:46

Ive been at my workplace just over a year and have always got on with all my colleagues including my boss. Over the past 6 months we have been spending more time together and have started seeing each other outside work. It's great, he's a fun, kind, sensitive guy and treats me really well. The issue is us working together. We work in a large company and there is a lot of inter-office romance but not usually between people and their bosses.
So far all our dates have been at each others houses or far away so we aren't seen by people from work, but I am getting a bit fed up of this. 6 months in and I feel it is ok to say we are dating but he is convinced that is unacceptable and that he will get sacked... Or forced into leaving. I have looked through all the HR policies and there is nothing about that in there. We both really like our jobs and don't want to look for anything else as what we do is quite specialised.
I'm at a bit of a loss as to what to do. I don't want to stop seeing him but I also don't see how this can continue indefinitely. He says he doesn't want it to and wants to be able to live normally but he won't put a date on when he tells his boss as he says he has to be prepared that he will be asked to leave our company.
My friends think he is being ridiculous and that people get together at work all the time but he says that it's different because he's my boss and people will start accusing him of favouring me. FWIW I am well respected at work and although I know people will gossip if and when they find out we are together, I don't really care! I am entitled to a private life and am well known for working my butt off at my professional one.

Advice please ladies!!

justmuddlingalong Wed 13-Nov-13 21:25:52

So does no-one from work know at all?

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 13-Nov-13 21:26:21

I'm pretty sure that legally there is no barrier to couples working with/for each other in an organisation. However, organisations sometimes operate their own internal rules in order to get around the possibilities of favouritism accusations or confidences being breached. Dismissal is unlikely, therefore, but you may be reassigned to a different team.

cornflakegirl Wed 13-Nov-13 21:29:33

Wouldn't be allowed where I work - do you really not have a "close working" policy? Thought they were pretty standard.

Fucketyfuck Wed 13-Nov-13 21:37:21

No - nobody from work knows at all. Infact hardly any people know! (to minimise the risk of people at work finding out).

cogito that's exactly what I told him would happen. I am pretty confident the company would want to keep us both.

I don't want to stat giving ultimatums but this can't really go on can it??.. I'm also aware the relationship isn't totally REAL till its in the real world and don't want to waste my time if it turns out he's not for me in the real world! however I have fallen for him in a big way and don't want to call time on things just yet.

Fucketyfuck Wed 13-Nov-13 21:38:57

cornflake I haven't heard of a 'closeworking' policy. I have been through a big long list of policies on the intranet but cant see anything of relevance.

Leverette Wed 13-Nov-13 21:41:30

The fact that he's your boss creates a conflict of interest with regard to line managing you in a fair and equitable way alongside your peers. The vast majority of companies would not allow this.

WallyBantersJunkBox Wed 13-Nov-13 21:42:34

So what happens if he gives you a crap appraisal, op?

Leverette Wed 13-Nov-13 21:43:21
Fucketyfuck Wed 13-Nov-13 21:44:21

If I deserved it I think I could take it!

Fucketyfuck Wed 13-Nov-13 21:46:05

Leverette - what you say makes sense.
But if he went to his boss and told him he wouldn't get sacked would he?
Surely it would be a "this is happening and here are some ideas about what we can do" conversation (I.e. one of us move to a different role?). I really like this guy a lot but don't want to leave my job for him given that our relationship so far has operated in a very limited sphere.

Fucketyfuck Wed 13-Nov-13 21:48:07

Thanks for the link leverette. It all makes sense but I still don't think we could be forced to leave our jobs could we? Wouldn't it be down to us both, with HR to find an appropriate solution.

Auntidote Wed 13-Nov-13 21:48:26

Think he might not be able to be your manager, but why would he have to leave? Can't you both stay but just shuffle around management responsibility?

I don't know that there's anything in our work policies about this, but in practice it would be fine if colleagues got together (there's plenty of it), but they couldn't be immediate boss. Did work with a couple once where Mrs managed Mr's manager. Think that was about as close as it could go.

Teeb Wed 13-Nov-13 21:49:06

You say it's a big company, would it be possible for one of you to move sideways to a different department so he wasn't your direct boss? If that's an option then it's probably what would be the best for all parties involved.

justmuddlingalong Wed 13-Nov-13 21:49:26

Have you met his family or friends outwith work?

WallyBantersJunkBox Wed 13-Nov-13 21:50:58

There is just too much conflict of interest here - what if you got a great appraisal and everyone on the team got a crap one?

You could be the best employee in the company on your own merit but it wouldn't stop bitter and twisted people from feeling jealous that you have an advantageous position.

There are a few couples in my workplace and it is quite awkward when you are in a meeting with them.

After 6 months you must know whether it will be long term or not. If it is, I am very surprised as a manager, that he hasn't had a chat with HR about this.

TheFantasticFixit Wed 13-Nov-13 21:54:26

In my organisation, we have a close working policy which means that should you have a relationship with a colleague you should expect to not only be moved teams, but also office location. It's pretty tough and although the most heavy handed I've seen it's not unusual. I think you would find your fellow team mates would have concerns ie nepotism, and what if you break up? It could and in my experience, would make working together very difficult.

Can either of you volunteer to move teams before the cat is out if the bag, if that's the most reasonable expectation anyway?

FortyFacedFuckers Wed 13-Nov-13 21:57:51

I got together with my boss, officially nothing was said but it made it pretty awkward when we eventually told everyone and after a year i felt I had to move on. No advice but I do think even if there is nothing officially stopping you one of you need to be willing to move on if things get difficult.

EdithWeston Wed 13-Nov-13 22:03:36

In my organisation, known couples (and relatives) were not allowed to line manage each other. Relationships were meant to be declared, and then roles would be reassigned so there could be no input from one lover to another over things like promotions, pay rises or appraisals.

Much better to keep sex and business separate, and easily achievable, unless your company is tiny.

Alanna1 Wed 13-Nov-13 22:08:09

Even worse if it gets found out - and bet it does. Offices love gossip. I think you need to ask to be line managed by someone else - even if you both decide to keep it secret (which I don't think you should do).

FWIW, my best friend dated her boss when she was the intern(!) - smallish company, he was a director; they are now married with 3 kids; she got him to leave the company when it was discovered! To be fair he was easily able to move and was ready to do so, and she had struggled to get her foot in a door and it was a great opportunity for her to be there. She now earns more than him too before anyone suggests she took advantage in any way - and he went on to a much better job. So who knows how it might work out for you.

EBearhug Thu 14-Nov-13 01:31:40

We're not allowed to have relationships with someone at a different level in the same reporting line. I've also worked for a company where those in the audit department weren't allowed relationships with anyone in the company, though other departments didn't have such tight restrictions.

If one of you can move departments, you should, to remove the risk of accusations over fairness around performance reviews and so on.

(I went out with a guy on the same level as me in the same department for some years. We were in different countries, though.)

deXavia Thu 14-Nov-13 01:42:37

Wouldn't be allowed where I work, one of you would be expected to move roles. It's as much to stop accusations of favoritism as to stop actual favoritism - if you see what I mean. I would look for one of you to move role before 'coming out' but suspect you'll still find you'll get about of a back lash. Sorry just the way people/office gossips are

bragmatic Thu 14-Nov-13 01:42:39

At a minimum there is a perceived conflict of interest so I think you should proceed with caution.

Isetan Thu 14-Nov-13 04:42:49

Your'e both being naive here. Him trying to keep it secret indefinitely and you thinking that there would be no consequences in going public while remaining in the same roles.

If you want to go public then he can not have direct managerial responsibility over you.

CuntyBunty Thu 14-Nov-13 04:48:43

You could "out" the relationship?

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