Lieber, an employment law attorney and founder of Workplace Answers. When designing the policy, choose between full freedom, freedom with restrictions, or freedom with disclosure. Have a formal sexual harassment policy posted in the office and included in your employee handbook.
“Love contracts help maintain a functional office environment.” Here’s 6 more tips to keep the office running smoothly when love is in the air. As supervisor/subordinate relationships can create actual or potential conflicts of interest, it is common for policies to restrict them or require those involved to disclose the relationship to HR. Train employees that the company has zero tolerance for sexual harassment, and require employees to sign a document indicating they understand the policy. Managers and supervisors should be comfortable coaching co-worker couples if their behavior results in low morale or productivity.
Bloomberg Business reports that National Public Radio, Princeton Review, Pixar, and Southwest Airlines encourage in-house matchmaking for these reasons.
In fact, Southwest Airlines counts 7% of its staff with spouses who also work for the company.
That percentage is on the rise, and it’s no surprise: we spend one-third of our lives at work.
So, is it possible to allow cupid’s arrows in the office—but steer clear of legal landmines?
“You get to see people at their best and at their worst,” says Helen Olen, co-author of . what’s important to you, you get to see in an office.” This differs from casual meetups at bars or online where people may show only certain sides of themselves.
He argues that co-worker couples spend more time at work, take fewer sick days, and are less likely to quit.
The way we view office romance is changing, alongside the blending of our personal and professional lives.
More employees are dating each other, and fewer HR leaders view these relationships as unprofessional (just 29% in 2013, down from 58% in 2005). The employee dating dynamic can cause distraction, morale issues and claims of real or perceived favoritism.
In some states, privacy laws prevent an employer from restricting employee relationships—unless a conflict of interest is involved.
A romantic relationship between a supervisor and subordinate provides the potential for a conflict and the opportunity for the employer to require a love contract.