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Dating people from work

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Traditional places like church, family events, and leisure time activities don’t present the same pool of candidates as they did in earlier times.The workplace provides a preselected pool of people who share at least one important area of common ground.

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You might consider a policy that prohibits supervisors from dating any employee who reports directly to him or her.Regardless of whether your employer has a workplace romance policy in place, you’ll want to keep your relationship off workplace radar as much as possible.If you and your partner have contact on a regular basis, keep the contact professional. Avoid talking privately in corners or behind closed doors, regularly eating lunch together without other coworkers, and -- above all -- touching.Her findings indicated that most respondents do not mind seeing a romance develop between two unmarried colleagues.They do object to relationships in which one or both coworkers are married to someone else, however, and they also object when the relationship is between a supervisor and his or her direct report. Poe, an HR freelance writer, also found in a Society for Human Resource Management white paper that adulterous affairs were a problem in some workplaces.Other studies have reported a higher level of productivity from dating couples at work.

And yet, an SHRM workplace romance survey found in 2013 that 42 percent of companies had developed a formal, written, workplace romance policy.

According to Dana Wilkie, an online SHRM editor, periodic surveys by SHRM show that 99 percent of employers with romance policies in place indicate that love matches between supervisors and staff members are not allowed.

That’s up from 80 percent in 2005, and from 64 percent in SHRM’s 2001 Workplace Romance survey.

If romance becomes sexual harassment, supervisors should know what to do to take immediate action -- this can be a legal hotbed, so training should be significant and cover all bases.

Make sure your employees are aware of all rules and policies regarding workplace romances as well.

Almost half these policies – 45 percent – forbid romances between employees of significantly different rank. Many organizations forbid intimate relationships even outside supervisory relationships.