Company policy on dating subordinates

To avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest, he wants her to report to me instead.He says that since both parties are single, and the relationship is consensual, it’s a private matter.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.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.

And when romance blooms at the office—especially with the boss—it’s disruptive to other employees, triggering questions about fairness, favoritism, transparency, credibility and accountability.

Even if it does not violate a written policy, your boss (the CEO or the board) might not care, and view it as a lack of senior management acumen.

Q: My business partner is dating one of his direct reports.

This is no dating game—the relationship, whether or not they stay together, could wreak havoc on your culture and company.

Playing musical chairs with direct reports does not solve the ethical issues that come with this interoffice romance.

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