Keep Cupid Under Control

“How do I make sure office romances can’t hurt my company?”

There are no guarantees but there are things you can do to reduce your risks regarding office romances. Looking at the statistics, 65% of workers have had or are in a workplace relationship, 12% have dated their subordinates, and 19% have dated their superiors. It’s the last two that put your company most at risk.

We know employees potentially spend more time with coworkers than with their own family and friends so it’s no wonder romances happen. It would be great if your supervisory staff fully understood the dangers to themselves and to your company by engaging in an office romance. You can reduce your risk with a few simple steps.

  • In California, all companies with 5+ employees anywhere must provide compliant sexual harassment prevention training to all CA employees. This may help your employees understand what constitutes harassment… and the fact that the supervisory staff can be charged with harassment, in addition to the company.
  • Make a policy requiring all romantic relationships to be reported to HR. This step makes it easier to protect everyone. If a perceived romance isn’t reported, HR should ask the participants about their behavior.
  • Confirm the relationship is consensual. Have HR speak individually with each participant in the relationship and put in writing this is a consensual relationship. By meeting individually with each person, they have the opportunity to tell you it is not consensual. Having it in writing makes it much easier to defend any claim later.

Relationships can easily appear consensual but, as they often do, relationships end. Once a person is angry, they are more likely to strike back by filing a claim. Without the consensual relationship confirmed in writing, it can be difficult to fight the claim.

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>





This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.