I wrote this piece when Over Here Theater were trying to get in on the very lucrative Team Building entertainment business. You know the kind of thing. The whole department goes off to a country house hotel for a day of interminable presentations which is the price you have to pay for a lovely 5 course dinner and afterwards some entertainment and then a boozy free for all in which reputations and marriages are destroyed before everyone climbs drunkenly into, one hopes, their own bed.
We put together a business themed comedy show which would have been very funny if anyone had actually hired us to perform it.
Delia on the Office Romance
Good afternoon. Let me introduce myself. I am Delia Darling, romantic novelist, television celebrity and relationship counsellor. I am here to talk to you today about something so important, so vital to happiness and productivity in the workplace that I am frankly astounded to find that no other training facility attempts it. I refer of course to the office romance.
Some heartless and insensitive employers, of course, frown on the office romance but this is a short-sighted view. If they only understood what a marvellous tool the office romance can be in dealing with human resource issues. Take for example the problem of tardiness. What could be more of an inducement for a lovely young woman to arrive early at the office every day than the knowledge that she will find her handsome boss already at his desk and for a few brief moments before the rest of the department arrives he is hers alone. Together they plan his day and if her hand brushes his oh so lightly as she hands him his coffee, will not their hearts be lighter as they go though the soul destroying routines of the business day and will not her perfume sweeten his mighty burden?
Absenteeism is a serious problem in the City. Yet, what greater incentive could a young man possibly have to go to work every day than the glorious possibility of a brief encounter with the beloved by the jammed photocopier, as each of them bends to open Door A and their fingers oh so accidentally touch sending a shock of ecstasy through every fibre of his being. How lovely she looks as she bends to turn Handle B and her slender hand disappears tantalisingly into the open orifice and emerges with the burned and crumpled paper.
Even in the board room how much more exciting a PowerPoint presentation can be when a nylon clad toe tentatively caresses a manly sock under the conference table and two hearts may still beat as one even if the quarter-end numbers are represented on the screen in a gracefully declining arc of red.
In conclusion, to the team leaders among you, I say this. Your aim is to keep your team in the office for as many hours of the day as you can possibly get away with. In this endeavour, the office romance is your greatest weapon. Provide some cosy and private spaces where love can blossom, for example a walk-in stationery cupboard, or lockable photocopy room, and you will soon find that your team will be in no hurry to take the 17:30 back to the suburbs. As you walk though the office and hear a dozen different employees calling their partners with “I’m sorry darling I have to work late” you know that they will be at their desks for a least another couple of hours in case their partner calls back and you can retire to your own personal stationery cupboard with the employee of your choice with a clear conscience.