Flirting in the workplace is a God-given right and a heck of a lot less lethal than going all the way with your boss.
I’ve always wondered about those all girly jobs in PR or cosmetic industries where you only work with women and talk mostly about anorexia or the latest under eye concealer. Sure, you can trade gossip on the J. Sisters bikini wax techniques, but what’s the fun in getting dressed up for work if no one’s around to appreciate the gold-flecked body powder you’ve tossed down your cleavage ? A fun and frisky flirt is what every girl needs and don’t fool yourself, you can still get ahead that way.
I’ve now reached the age where I can call anyone "honey" or "cutie" without fear of sexual harassment, but in truth I’ve flirted throughout my career and it never boomeranged because I was also smart and a master at sizing up political potholes.
During the first summer I worked for Helen Gurley Brown at Cosmopolitan magazine, Bill Clinton was running for president and making the rounds of New York fundraisers one of which was being held on a sweaty August night in my apartment building. Blonde and tan wearing a white t-shirt and red shorts, I stood in the lobby holding Otis, my King Charles spaniel. Clinton and I ended up alone without the ubiquitous security detail but with him petting my dog. And, as I recall, me. His hand started the downstroke on the fur and ended on my t-shirt. HGB was so proud of my escapade; I was her ultimate Cosmo girl, though she would have given me the Nobel Prize had I taken it one step further. It was a flirt all in the name of investigative journalism.Pretty and smart is still an unbeatable work combination. I know one big city mayor who used to run a high profile company and only wanted pretty girls around his bullpen. The overweight young woman whose bra straps always showed, and who had the unfortunate habit of burping out loud, lasted minutes before being moved quickly to another floor.