Even if you count your colleagues as friends, and spend more time with them than you do with your loved ones, you should know where to draw the line.
It is important to know at what point you need to stop being friends with your colleague and start being co-workers again.
Workplace law expert Joydeep Hor said that the boundaries between work life and private life are becoming increasingly blurred, creating problems for employees both professionally and legally.
Aside from the obvious awkwardness, talking about your sex life can get you in legal trouble.
Hor said that the definition of sexual harassment is quite broad.
“But it’s quite clear that within that breadth a person could claim being harassed in circumstances where a colleague has shared too much detail of their private life,” News.com.au quoted him as saying.
“It doesn’t need to be of a graphic sexual nature, even if it touches on that, arguably it could be seen as harassment,” he said
Manners expert Anna Musson agrees, advising not to talk about one night stands or sexual exploits.
No one wants to work in an office where they can’t speak their mind, but Hor said that people need to be aware of their obligation not to vilify certain groups in the workplace.
He said that opinions on racial vilification and homosexual vilification - topics in workplaces where views might be held that lead to vigorous acts of debate should be avoided.
Musson said that gossiping about others in the office is a bad look because it suggests you are not productive in the workplace.
Business etiquette expert Danielle Di-Masi said you should be careful about what you share about in your private life because your colleagues have long memories.
If one of your colleagues or a customer is rude to you be careful about how you respond, especially if you’re angry or frustrated.
Di-Masi said that your co-workers might be turned off if you’re constantly venting about others.
We all make mistakes at work, some bigger than others.
You might be tempted to tell a close work friend about it, but if the mistake is serious you may not be able to trust them to keep it to themselves.
Hor said that if someone discloses misconduct to a colleague, they could be forced to share it if they’re participating in an employer conducted investigation.
Musson said you should always apply a filter about what you tell co-workers who are friends.
Even big exciting developments in your life – like getting pregnant, married or moving overseas – can pose problems if you share them in the wrong way.
Chances are you’ll want to tell your closest work friends about big life events before you tell your boss, but Di-Masi said that this can end up reflecting badly on you.