7.5 Relationships at Work


  1. List the different types of workplace relationships.
  2. Describe the communication patterns in the supervisor-subordinate relationship.
  3. Describe the different types of peer coworker relationships.
  4. Evaluate the positives and negatives of workplace romances.

Although some careers require less interaction than others, all jobs require interpersonal communication skills. Shows like The Office and The Apprentice offer glimpses into the world of workplace relationships. These humorous examples often highlight the dysfunction that can occur within a workplace. Since many people spend as much time at work as they do with their family and friends, the workplace becomes a key site for relational development. The workplace relationships we’ll discuss in this section include supervisor-subordinate relationships, workplace friendships, and workplace romances.Patricia M. Sias, Organizing Relationships: Traditional and Emerging Perspectives on Workplace Relationships (Los Angeles, CA: Sage, 2009), 2.

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