Valentine’s Day and 10 potential problems with workplace romance

Dispute Resolution

Employment - 1 minute read

Is it right for employers to have rules on personal intimate relationships at work? Are managers able to play Cupid without being shot by their own arrow? Have you ever asked a colleague out on a date and wondered about a claim for sexual harassment bring one of the consequences?

Personnel Today helpfully consider 10 potential problems with workplace romances for both employers and employees.

It is interesting to note that caution and prevention are the key themes in their advice. They are broken down into the following:

  • Having policies which clearly outline an employer’s stance on workplace relationships
  • Policies defining ‘inappropriate conduct’
  • What can and cannot be discussed at home
  • How positions of authority can affect workplace relationships
  • The legitimacy of signing a ‘love contract’
  • Human rights issues
  • When the workplace relationships takes a turn for the worst
  • Asking colleagues out on dates
  • Complimenting a colleague on his or her appearance
  • Matching making managers….and the claim that one in particular had for sexual harassment

Workplace relationships: key problems for employers

Employers responding to XpertHR’s survey on workplace relationships found problems with:

complaints of favouritism from co-workers;
decreased morale of co-workers;
bullying or unpleasant behaviour between employees;
couple’s productivity decreasing; and
claims of sexual harassment.