Why We Should Tell Everyone That We’re Seeing Other People

Or to put it differently, is it time for employers and employees to stop pretending that staff are not, at some point, going to explore their options?

Perhaps it’s time we all accepted that, professionally speaking, we are all free to see other people. Not only should we accept it but we should be 100% transparent about it too.

In your grandfather’s day, you finished high school (maybe) and then went out and got a job. One job. And then spent the next 20–30 years slowly working your way up through the ranks.

To his employer, grandpa moving on to bigger and better opportunities, after steadily gaining experience and building his career for a few years, wasn’t just problematic, it was stone cold betrayal!

Flash forward to 2016 and some, if not most, organisations still share those sentiments.

They still believe that meeting with new potential employers should not be something that you discuss openly. That you should do your best to hide your dirty little secret.

But imagine a world where we could freely share and discuss the choice to explore our employment options.

Would businesses not be better prepared to address potential factors pushing talent out the door? Or even better equipped to develop and retain staff? Would people not build better, more open and collaborative, professional networks? Sharing experiences and insights gained by meeting with potential employers. Would we not all be forced to pay some real attention to reputation management and brand integrity? And perhaps most importantly, would this not aid in levelling the playing field between employers and employees? Putting some more of the negotiating power in the hands of the individual rather than the organisation?

I believe this kind of shift in our thinking could do all of these things and ultimately lead to a better working environment.

And not just because you’d no longer have to evade questions on why you got a bit dressed up for your dental appointment.

So what do you think? Would you prefer being open about seeing other people? Or do you believe that your professional philandering should be kept absolutely confidential until you’ve emailed your Dear John letter to HR?

Let me know your thoughts by commenting, or tweet me @BarryBdotBiz

Originally published at barryb.biz on January 15, 2015.

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