As an employer, it is important to ensure that these circumstances do not lead to incidents of sexual harassment.Sexual harassment is any unwanted or unwelcome sexual behaviour where a reasonable person would have anticipated the possibility that the person harassed would feel offended, humiliated or intimidated.The University views such conflicts of interest as seriously as it does those involving family members or blood relatives.
According to the Career Builder survey, some industries are more prone to inter-office dating than others.Supervisors who receive a report that someone who reports to them is involved in a consensual romantic or sexual relationship with an employee the supervisor supervises will be expected to speak confidentially with the person(s) involved.If the relationship exists, appropriate steps should be taken to ensure that decisions are made in an unbiased setting.He's also a former talk radio host (KTLK AM 1150 at Clear Channel) and an entrepreneur himself, as the founder of Legal Endeavor.As the old saying goes "you don't dip your pen in the company ink." In other words, you shouldn't get into a dating or sexual relationship with a co-worker.Additionally, to avoid a conflict of interest or an appearance of conflict of interest, no employee may initiate or participate in, directly or indirectly, decisions involving a direct benefit, e.g., initial hire or rehire, promotion, salary, performance appraisals, work assignments or other working conditions to those related by blood or marriage, membership in the same household, including domestic partners, or persons with whom employees have an intimate relationship.The potential for conflict of interest may also exist in close personal relationships which involve other than family relationships.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.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.But a lot of companies don't let the rank and file decide--they adopt policies that ban or limit workplace dating--all in the name of lowering liability.