The Rise of The Work Spouse
The work spouse. Yes, it’s a thing!
“A co-worker, usually of the opposite sex, with whom you share a close bond like that of a married couple.”
Brother from another mother? Sister from another mister? Anyone?
The flexibility of working from home and still chatting with the office has continued to obscure the ever-blurring line between home and work life. As we become more familiar with our colleagues in their natural environment, is it any wonder that we build stronger relationships with these people, and that work spouses have emerged from these relationships?
According to totaljobs, 17% of UK workers have a work spouse, with 48% saying they have strong friendships with many colleagues. So is this a good thing, or does it make work life more complicated?
A 2015 study found that work spouses often mirror the same qualities found in an actual spouse. The immense support offered by these individuals boosts morale and the potential for career success.
Having emotional back up in the office is positive for the workplace as a whole. Work spouses counsel one another through difficult situations including stress and burn-out. They reduce the chance of a toxic environment should a fall-out between colleagues occur. And most workers felt that their work spouse improved their work and productivity.
The media have cast an indecent image of work spouses, depicting sexual tension and the potential for cheating. As a result, most avoid using the term, and traditional advice is to maintain a professional distance. Yet 54% of businesses state that close relationships in the workplace improve company culture.
So let’s embrace our similarities and bond with our colleagues. You never know, your work spouse could be at your next position. If you need help taking the next step in your career, or want to work for a forward-thinking company like ours, why not drop us a line or ping over your CV?