Internship advice: How to handle office crushes, romances, and persistent admirers.


Ahh… the sighs of true love. Eyes meet, swipe right, and let the stream of oohs trail from bay to bay. You know you are feeling it too if he/she is the only reason you leave your carefree college life behind and work hard to be noticed during your college internship.

How to handle office crushes, romances, and persistent admirers.

Gifts at the workplace:

I got flowers at work. And chocolates and gifts too. I don’t like attention.

Going with the sentiment this February, receiving a Valentine’s Day gift is not unusual, especially for the freshers or interns in the office. However, handling it deftly is what you need to do. If it’s just flowers, you can do either of the two things – put them up in the bay or leave them on the reception.

For chocolates, sharing is caring – so be sure to distribute among all your colleagues, handling it positively.

For gifts, you can choose to leave them on the reception or hand them to your reporting manager, explaining how you don’t want this kind of attention in the office. Your secret admirer will receive the message.

Becoming a secret admirer:

There’s a certain someone that I secretly admire. Should I go ahead and tell them.

Well, an office romance is incomplete without a secret, special someone. However, before you approach them, like our contest winner, you need to ask yourself some specific questions:
  • Is it a passing fancy or something serious?
  • What is your office policy on office romance?
  • If you had to choose between the romance and your job what would you do (Look into our quiz here)
  • Do you think the person will be receptive enough?
  • Can you manage an office romance without losing track of your career

Handling Office Crushes:

I have the hots for that tall dude in development.

Well, all of us have those secret office crushes, which make the everyday office life all the more special. And if you, like me, have just entered an office as an intern, it’s easy to spot that special someone in a sea of strange faces. However, remember feelings are good to have and enjoy – on your own.

In the office (and in life), you should be in charge, not these feelings. Most crushes are momentary and pass, but shouldn’t slight your reputation, or your performance. Be professional and treat them the way you would any other co-worker. And if something happens on the side – keep it there.

Handling persistent admirers:

There’s a senior always offering a ride back home. How do I handle it?

Be calm. It can simply be a case of chivalry, but if you believe that there is something behind it, then begin with a polite no. No amount of plans, made-up boyfriends, or other connections can take the place of a simple ‘No. Thanks for the offer, but I have my own way’. It might seem impolite, considering that you’re the office newbie, but it would lay the ground out before things go in a different direction altogether.

Handling imagined affairs:

I’m very chill with a teammate – but people always comment about how cute we look together. How do I say it isn’t so, without turning it into a major scene.

Stay calm. Stay strong. Though it sounds very cliche but a response is just enough to fan this fire, especially the wrong kind. A gossip, who likely specializes in link-ups may take that and weave it into a bigger story.

Then what should you do?

Be positive, focused, and strong. Try turning it into a jest (seriously, and what about the two of us) and try to focus on the who (the gossiper and the axe they have to grind). And if that doesn’t help, try confrontation (discreetly at first and then openly). A subtle hint of going to the management / HR can help in the worst of worst cases.
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