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Work Spouse

Work Spouse

As quiet as it’s kept several of us, regardless of our actual marital status, have what you would call a “work spouse” at work.  What is a work spouse?

A work spouse is someone who you work closely with on a day-to-day basis.  This person compliments your skills at work and can almost finish your sentences.  You typically talk daily and many times back each other up.  For instance, if the other person is unavailable, you know them and their projects/assignments so well you can step in and fill the gap.

Benefits of a work spouse:

  • Very much like an actual spouse you are trusted, a confidant, and dependable.  You really have each other’s back.  While the term spouse is used, there is nothing romantic about this relationship.
  • Work spouses can actually help you improve your work performance.
  • A work spouse can be a good vouch for your good work.  Since they know you and your work style intimately, they can easily provide a good reference to other employees in the company or management.
  • They are candid and can be open and honest about your performance or work product.  They care about your feelings but they care you enhance your career more and for that reason – they are honest about your job performance.
  • They can be trusted to keep a secret – meaning they know your true feelings about things happening in the office.  They keep it close and allow you to vent.
  • They are a mentor and advisor of sorts.  Since they may not be as close to an assignment they can provide advice to help you.
  • They want to see you win – if no one else is in your corner, this person is always rooting for you to win.  No jealousy or envy exists.  They support you in all of your goals.

As you can see a work spouse is a good thing to have.  Doesn’t mean you will always have one, but if you can get one it can really help propel your career because you have at least one advocate in the office.  Typically they are your peer but that is ok.  If they are a peer with influence, that is a good thing for you.  Also, remember, spouses aren’t supposed to be selfish so make sure you reciprocate and give what you get.

Do you have a work spouse?  What benefit would you add to this list?

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