How to Stop Getting Hit on at Work

When you started your job, perhaps someone was being extra friendly to you. That friendliness may have turned into unwanted flirting. If you have someone hitting on you at work, there are ways to end this behaviour.

When it comes down to unwanted flirting, there's most certainly right ways, and wrong ways to handle yourself and the situation.

The Dos

Here are some right ways to handle yourself and the ‘flirter’.

  • Be affirmative: Let's face it, most girls are just too sweet. They either don't want to hurt the guy’s feelings, or they just don't know how to say stop. You can be affirmative, without being rude. Kindly tell him that you're not interested, or that you don't appreciate his behaviour or comments. Although this is mainly an issue for females, there are males that are experiencing the same issue. The same advice applies; be stern, but polite.
  • Be Upfront: Tell the person hitting on you that you're in a relationship. You are happy with your partner, and do not appreciate the flirting.
  • Act bored: If someone is flirting with you, act bored. They will get the hint. If you are not responsive to their comments, they will most likely stop.
  • Walk away: If someone makes you feel uncomfortable, don't give them the satisfaction. If they say something or make you feel uneasy, simply walk away. This will either send a clear message, or make them feel silly. If they feel silly, it's less likely that they'll try again.
  • Become more involved in your work tasks: If you're busy with work, there's less downtime to be approached.

The Don'ts

  • Leading them on: The worst thing you can do is lead someone on. Not only is it confusing, it's not fair to the person that actually likes you. If you're not interested, don't send mixed messages.
  • Don't play texting games: You should not be playing games with the person you're trying to avoid. If you are trying to stop someone from hitting you, don't text them at 10pm. If they try to flirt with you via text, simply avoid a response.
  • Encourage alone time: Don't give someone an opportunity to make an already bad situation worse. If they are openly flirtatious at work, your alone time could get very awkward.

What If These Tips Do Not Work?

If you have given the person more than enough chances to stop, you may need to proceed to a more serious course of action.

  • Be very firm: If they will not stop, make sure you let them know that you're serious. You would appreciate it if they left you alone. Let them know that you will be taking further action.
  • Approach management: Let your management team know what's happening. Let them know it's beginning to interfere with your work, and you'd like it to be resolved. If their job becomes threatened, they may stop.
  • Contact a lawyer: In more severe cases, you may need to contact a lawyer. A lawyer may be necessary if the person follows you once work is over, or they have become angry due to your rejections.  

If someone is making you feel uncomfortable at work, let them know. You do not want your work to become affected. Be respectful, and in most cases the individual will stop. You need to feel safe and productive in your work environment.  If they do not stop, don't be afraid to take it to the next step.

Photo credit: TheGuardian