According to a Career Builder survey, interoffice dating has a fairly high success rate--of the 38% of people surveyed that dated a co-worker at least once, 31% went on to marry that co-worker! If you believe the stats of new employees entering the workforce, it might seem so.
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.
In a better scenario, coworkers would find it easier to claim that an employee received preferential treatment from a supervisor he or she is dating.
In a poorer scenario, the relationship would end badly, one of the employees could claim that the relationship was non-consensual, or that sexual harassment existed.
The legal issue is what I like to call the "amplification" of potential liability that always exists around the employer-employee relationship.
There will foreseeably be claims of favoritism, or even discrimination or harassment.Think of it this way: Is the potential relationship worth risking your good job or name?I tend to sound like a broken record when it comes to company policies.I don't know enough about the origins of the term to know for sure.Let's just go with the optimistic interpretation that it was created with the best of intentions.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.