One out of every three American adults currently are or previously have been in a workplace romance, according to a new omnibus poll released by SHRM—the Society for Human Resource Management. However, nearly one-third (28 percent) of those who has been involved in a workplace romance never disclosed it.
“Because so much of our waking time is spent at work, it’s no surprise that romances develop in the workplace,” said Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., president and CEO of SHRM. “It makes little sense to forbid them. Instead, employees should be encouraged to disclose relationships. This is the most effective way to limit the potential for favoritism, retaliation and sexual harassment claims.”
For those who did report their romance, most said their company was “neither supportive nor unsupportive” (29 percent) or was “supportive” (32 percent).
Those who have never been involved in workplace romances listed these top reasons:
Seventeen percent of those who never have been in a workplace romance said they refrained due to concerns of potential sexual harassment claims. More men than women named this concern as a reason to not participate in workplace romances.