Purely sex chat
This system obviously has advantages over night-time pick-ups in darkened clubs, holiday romances, (notoriously short-lived), or blind dates arranged by friends. High-powered City workers of the Nineties are accustomed to using the office as a complete life- support system. Making a pass is a dangerous manoeuvre in the workplace. Trying to blur the lines between business and pleasure will appear sleazy.If your interest is not reciprocated you could be accused of sexual harassment or - at least - end up looking sad and sleazy once the office gossips have done their worst. How highly do you value this person as an employee/ colleague/ friend? This would entail getting someone to work late at the office and then taking them out for a meal "because it's too late to go home and cook" or taking them away on a business conference and making sure your rooms are next door to one another. Working well with someone means being relaxed with them - and that is impossible if you're not sure whether they're trying to seduce you or not.
How about: "Would you like to come out for a meal with me tomorrow night?It is difficult jilting anyone you have to work with, but once you have had sex it is a million times tougher and more complicated. Don't tell even your closest workmates what went on.There's no need to keep the whole thing secret, but never, ever spill the beans about what was said and what was done. Never tell anyone you work with what a disaster/rave it was.Be light in tone but clear about your intentions (not all of them, of course).Allow them to see that you want to put the relationship on a social footing, thereby also allowing the courtesy of letting them turn you down too. Take no to mean no and never cajole, push or ask for an explanation. Plan a semi-jokey line that will immediately alleviate the atmosphere between the two of you and restore normal working relations.The Chat-up: Fancying someone you work with is not a criminal offence and neither is asking them out. Are you in any danger of being accused of favouritism if you start to see each other outside work? When someone operates in this manner, it is difficult to know when to say "no, thank you".
It's always wise to keep in mind, though, that in the workplace you should think and plan before you act. What are your positions in the company pecking order? If you do tell this colleague you're not interested in them as a partner they may claim - unfairly - that that was never their intention in the first place, craftily extricating themselves from the area of conflict, leaving a sour taste all round.
Simple is best, as it avoids too much blush inducing-babble.
So how about "that's okay, no hard feelings", or "wise girl/chap"(whatever), or "no, you're right.
Prior to making a play for a colleague, work out the following - however hard it is to be coldly rational under the circumstances: 1. Being positive: Surely the best move if you fancy a colleague is to ask them out on a good, old-fashioned date.
Do either of you have attachments - are you or this other person married/living with one another? Let them know it's a social thing too, or they may be unsure whether it's a meeting to discuss business.
Control those passions There is a strange mental phenomenon that can overpower even the most serious-minded and conscientious employee when they embark on an affair with a colleague, and that is that they suffer a barely controllable urge to get down to having sex at work. Desktops inspire the ultimate fantasy as business accoutrements are knocked to the floor with one fell swoop of a worsted-clad arm (difficult with all the PC equipment, I know - all those leads and plugs and mouse-mats), buns are unpinned, spectacles torn off, plus all that ice-cold laminated chipboard stretching out beneath you with just the odd unseen paperclip or stapler to mar the magic of the moment.