How to Handle Sexual Advances At Your Summer Internship
The weather isn’t the only thing that heats up in the summer. Working at an internship allows you to gain experience, make connections, and meet new people. Interning throws you into the workplace along with other young college students. Over time, you may develop a deeper relationship beyond the title of "co-workers." It's important to establish the type of relationship you want with your co-workers early on, whether that relationship is purely work related, simply friendship, or a potential summer fling.
Here are some tips to handle summer relationships at the work place.
In some cases, a co-worker may give you extra and unwanted attention. If he or she makes an advance on you, go to the cliché response. "I'm really sorry, I don’t think I can get involved with someone I work with." That specific response will let your co-worker down easily without disrupting your daily work routine. Remember, you want to maintain a work-friendly dynamic. If things go sour, you'll find yourself in a toxic work environment. In the end, your boss is looking for teamwork and coherence. If you're not interested, you need to maintain a work based, minimal relationship and understanding with your co-worker.
Make it happen:
If you do have the hots for that other intern, start by developing a friendship. Successful relationships always stem from a strong and amicable foundation. Although being in a professional setting can make you want to take on a more serious persona, try to maintain your normal, fun personality. Once a friendship has blossomed, ask him or her to hang out one day... outside of the office. See if they're interested in grabbing lunch or going to happy hour after work. Then, make your move. Flirt a little extra and see if the feelings are mutual.
How to keep it under wraps:
If a romantic relationship sprouts with your internship co-worker, it’s probably in your best interest to keep it to yourselves. Some bosses and other co-workers may find relationships between coworkers inappropriate, as they may tend to cause an unproductive work environment. There are a few ways to hide your naughty actions. Make sure you and your partner are on the same page. If both establish that you want to keep it on the DL, then (hopefully) it won’t get out. Make sure to remain professional when in the office. You are still working together so do not ignore them altogether, of course. But don’t get too close, and definitely avoid the temptation of a quickie in the bathroom... you need to treat your partner like every other worker there.
Note: If you are going to pursue a relationship with a co-worker, do not under any circumstances flirt with a full-time employee at the company. Being around interns is one thing, but if you are attracted to an actual staff member, it will only end badly. If your boss finds out, it will be likely that you and the staff member will be in the doghouse.