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Will You Meet Your Next Girlfriend at Work?

If you’re holding down an IT, hospitality or health care job and hitting up happy hour, the answer could be yes, suggests a new CareerBuilder survey.

As a general rule of thumb, office romances are off-limits. It’s what we all tell ourselves—until a new girl sets up shop in the cube next door and leaves us scanning our company’s sexual harassment policy to make sure some harmless flirting at happy hour isn’t going to get us fired.

Sound familiar? If you’ve set your sights on a woman in the workplace, you’re not alone. Thirty-nine percent of Americans have made the potentially career-jeopardizing (or messy and embarrassing, at the very least) move of dating a coworker, according to a new survey from CareerBuilder

The job search site clued us in to a few key things about picking up a girl in the same place we pick up a paycheck:

Your line of work will determine your luck.
Chances are if you roll up to a construction site every morning, you’re probably not going to find your future wife while you’re on the job. Hospitals and hotels are a different story. The top five industries for workplace romances:

1. Leisure and Hospitality
2. Information Technology
3. Financial
4. Health Care
5. Professional and Business Solutions

The playing field is pretty level.
Most office romances develop between two equally ranked employees. Still, 29 percent of workers have dated someone higher up in the company hierarchy, and 16 percent of survey respondents fessed up to dating their boss. Dating up is more common among women than men—38 percent have done it, compared to only 21 percent of men.

Office romances don’t start in the boardroom.
You might want to think twice before jetting from the workplace the second you’ve clocked your eight hours. Staying late at the office is a prime time to make sparks fly with a coworker. Running into each other outside of work and hitting up happy hour also top the list of places where things could go from friendly to flirtatious. 

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