Key players in workplace dating
Although some companies chose to have no policy on dating, that leaves them open to potential liability if a supervisor is shown to have sexually harassed a subordinate, for example, by giving a poor performance review to a former partner.To avoid this, companies institute various types of dating policy.Enforcing these policies can take their toll on a company. 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 29-year-old female employee.Just last month, Gary Friedman, the chief executive of Restoration Hardware, stepped down in the middle of the company's public offering. 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.
This can be especially true in high-growth companies that demand long work hours and tend to hire more single employees.This helps to protect the company from later charges that the relationship was not consensual and constituted sexual harassment.With this type of policy, the employees would also have to notify you whenever a relationship ends.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.