In 2010, Karriere.de, a web-portal on the subject of professions sponsored by the publications, conducted an interview with Simone Janson, an expert on career advice.
The interview was titled Kollegen sind nicht die besten Freunde – colleagues do not make the best of friends, in which she extensively discusses interactions and relations between colleagues. Her statements demonstrate in the German work environment the importance of having a clear boundary between one’s career and private life.
Bei der Arbeit ist zu enger privater Kontakt nicht immer von Vorteil. – Too close of personal contact at work is not always of benefit.
“One can choose one’s friends, but not one’s colleagues […] presumably everyone has had the experience of having a colleague share a lot of private information about themselves, and discussing their private concerns which they did not know how to handle at least once. Or they themselves have shared something private which they then realized was making their sympathetic colleague uncomfortable.”
“There also exist the long-term professional contacts, which eventually evolve into true friendships. Even I can’t succeed in maintaining a strict separation between the two areas. That would be synthetic and non-authentic. After all, no one can forcefully avoid conflict between fellow humans. These are part of cooperating, both at work and at home. Nevertheless, I still advise maintaining a certain professional distance wherever it is necessary.”