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Style Manager

Esthetic Advice for the Nervous Canadian

Report on Business Magazine
November 1999

At a recent office party, my boss hit on my fiancée. Now she refuses to attend any more of my professional functions. How can I mend this situation?

I'm assuming the incident involved suggestive language rather than physical contact, which is an entirely different matter in that it would force you to confront your boss directly. And while there is nothing wrong with flirting, propositioning an employee's date is very bad form. Adeodata Czink, owner of a Toronto etiquette school, Business of Manners, reminds us that years ago a slight of this sort would result in you challenging the offender to a duel. Those times are long gone, but your fiancée needs to feel that your loyalties in this matter are with her. "The boss in this situation is a swine," says Czink. "The male employee is caught in the middle. He could quit, but if not, then he needs to ask her gently to attend next time." You may also have to promise not to leave her side all evening. As for your employer, this is a very slippery slope. If he doesn't have the decency to acknowledge his bad judgment, heís clearly insensitive, and there's little point in discussing it now. I'm also quite positive he will deny it. Then it's his word against hers. You might have to resign yourself to the fact you may be flying so