Note: Every firm should have a sexual harassment policy, in addition to the office relationship policy.
Even if the office prohibits them, employees need to know what precisely is prohibited.
If relationships are allowed, the policies regarding them should reflect each organization’s unique makeup.
Tough questions and straightforward answers If you choose to allow office relationships, here are eight points to consider when establishing your guidelines.
They are by no means comprehensive, but they are some of the most frequent questions.
Do consider the size and demographics of the firm when developing your policies.
Think about the differences between a small start-up firm run by a group of pre-existing friends, a firm run by a husband-and-wife team, a small forty-person one-office firm, and a large firm with many practice groups and office locations. “I know it when I see it,” said the Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart. What exactly constitutes an office relationship, and what rules—if any—should be applied to one?From judges to presidents, our society finds it incredibly difficult to establish definitions for anything having to do with sex.But beyond fulfilling the letter of the law, it’s simply in everyone’s interest to create a workplace that feels comfortable and safe.That goes for both types of offices—those that allow office relationships and those that don’t. In real life, people’s relationships exist on many levels, not all sexual, which complicates the effort to write an office policy about relationships.So, for the purposes of this article, an office relationship will be defined as two people sexually involved with each other, and we’ll discuss tips and challenges when developing policies regarding office romances.