If you believe the stats of new employees entering the workforce, it might seem so.
Do You Allow Dating in Workplace?
But a lot of companies don't let the rank and file decide--they adopt policies that ban or limit workplace dating--all in the name of lowering liability. Enforcing these policies can take their toll on a company. Just last month, Gary Friedman, the chief executive of Restoration Hardware, stepped down in the middle of the company's public offering.
Friedman was not married, so there was no affair.
Policies About Workplace Dating
She didn't even work there anymore! Earlier this year, Best Buy's chief executive, Brian Dunn, stepped down after an investigation by the board discovered he had shown "extremely poor judgment" with a year-old female employee. A couple years ago, Hewlett-Packard's chief executive, Mike Hurd, resigned amid accusations of falsifying expense reports to hide a personal relationship with an independent contractor.
As companies grow and add employees, you will often see signs of budding workplace relationships. This can be especially true in high-growth companies that demand long work hours and tend to hire more single employees.
When your routine is work-sleep-work, going out to date does not seem like a real option for many. According to the CareerBuilder survey, some industries are more prone to inter-office dating than others.
Hospitality, Financial Services, Transportation and Utilities, Information Technology, and Health Services all topped the list as having higher than average office dating. As a business owner, you might ask: The legal issue is what I like to call the "amplification" of potential liability that always exists around the employer-employee relationship. There will foreseeably be claims of favoritism, or even discrimination or harassment.
- 2. Appropriate Conduct;
- 1. Require Disclosure;
- condor matchmaking.
- The Rules of Attraction: Do Employers Need Workplace Dating Policies? - Mallery and Zimmerman;
- HR Insights Blog | 4 Must-Haves for Your Workplace Dating Policy.
- dating your buck knife.
- Policies About Workplace Dating | aretmophana.tk.
When a workplace romance sours, it can expose the company to increased liability, since the connection between alleged actors is easier to establish--essentially giving the plaintiff some good ammunition for his or her case. Relationships between supervisors and subordinates create even more potential problems.
In a better scenario, coworkers would find it easier to claim that an employee received preferential treatment from a supervisor he or she is dating. In a poorer scenario, the relationship would end badly, one of the employees could claim that the relationship was non-consensual, or that sexual harassment existed. An employee could even make a case for unlawful retaliation if he or she receives a poor performance review from a former lover or if a co-worker receives a better evaluation from his or her boss.
There are a few different ways to manage this liability.
Dating in the Workplace: To Date or Not to Date?
When it comes to workplace dating policies, here are a few basic options:. Generally, policies cover not only employees, but also contractors, vendors, suppliers, manufacturers, and the like. Essentially, any relationship between two people that could have a negative effect on the company if things sour, or if one party is able to improperly influence the other would fall under the policy. One last generally acceptable rule: Even if it does not violate a written policy, your boss the CEO or the board might not care, and view it as a lack of senior management acumen.
I tend to sound like a broken record when it comes to company policies.
Avoid the potential risk of sexual harassment litigation by either prohibiting supervisors or managers from dating their direct reports or implement a policy in which when a relationship blossoms, the direct report switches to a different supervisor. However, you can communicate with the two parties the expectations of discussing confidential company information with one another during pillow talk.
When dealing with office romances, it is important to clearly communicate the expectations of the employees from the very start. Join the thousands who receive ERC's weekly newsletter to stay current on topics including HR news, training your employees, building a great workplace, and more.
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