According to recent studies, at least one-third of employees have likely engaged in workplace romances. Although employers generally disprove of workplace relationships, they’re still bound to happen since employees are together for the majority of their days.
Workplace romances among your team members (especially between superiors and their subordinates) could present a significant problem if you’re not prepared to deal with the possible consequences. While some companies may include clauses in their employment contracts forbidding workplace relationships, the possibility of two colleagues dating nevertheless remains.
Be sure to have a policy in place to deal with potential problems that could arise from in-office relationships. Romantic relationships are more prone to intense conflict than say, a casual acquaintanceship among coworkers. While some couples do excellent jobs of keeping their personal and professional lives separate, others unconsciously blend their two lives together, which could lead to significant problems for your office climate.
Workplace romances are tricky to navigate but oftentimes inevitable consequences of people spending a great deal of their time together. As a leader, this can be especially difficult because you have multiple employees’ needs to consider. On one hand, an unobtrusive workplace romance (one you wouldn’t know exists based on the two parties’ neutral interactions) is not likely to be a cause for concern. But it’s always important to plan ahead and be prepared for situations that don’t work out the way everyone involved had hoped.