Status and context affect spatial and proximity rules. For example, bosses are in charge of determining what level of closeness is appropriate and permitted as it relates to subordinate employees. This isn’t to say that employees enjoy this arrangement but rather that employees are not permitted to reverse proximity rules onto employers. Subordinate employees have many roles and one of them is tolerance of the rules set for them by their seniors. For example, a boss might pat the back of one his employees or put his or her arm around the new associate as a form of bonding. Reversal of the situation would be seen as an infringement on the status of the boss. When it comes to touching, a subordinate should never encroach on the personal space of someone holding a dominant position.
Contextual rules also exist with respect to personal space. In the office, it would be un-acceptable for sexual partners to touch one another or carry on in front of others. However, in the same office hosting a year-end business party with all of the same employees and their spouse’s, touching and even kissing would be common place.
Therefore, status and context are two other factors we should be conscious of as they relate to proximity and space.