When people work together eight to ten hours a day they naturally find out that they have a lot on common. Hours sitting next to each other, quick luncheons, flirting to keep the days interesting and social parties after work can lead to a passionate office relationship. Even though many of these relationships continue without problems for years they may still fall into chaos and awkward work situations.
Assuming that most people are mature and the break-up is low key and nonchalant you may always question the motives of your boss when you don’t get a raise, don’t get the assignment that you want or if he or she says something critical of your work. This type of fear can cause additional awkwardness and problems within the workplace. The anxiety may grow to the point that you either quit or walk into their office and give him or her a “piece of your mind”.
Other times the members of the relationship are not mature and one or the other still wants to keep the relationship. In such a case the boss may continue to make advances and you will have to continue to thwart their efforts. In other cases you might want to keep the relationship going and problems begin when you get jealous and frustrated at their interest in other people.
A boss and employee relationship can be detrimental to the business needs of the organization. Such relationships can be precedent for legal liability. The boss has much more to lose than the employee. He or she may loose their job, their business or their career.
In a real life example a company with nearly 300 employees got itself into serious legal trouble when the owner started dating a lady in the marketing department. In the sales person’s enthusiasm to move up the corporate ranks she continued to pressure other employees to make special concession for her. When they refused, she started playing politics with them and went to the owner to seek concessions. A number of employees felt as though they must leave the organization or they will be fired because their boss was no longer happy with their performance. Four employees sued the company and won two million dollars in damages. The company is now closed.
Those who are attracted to the power, prestige and wealth of their bosses should consider the potential negative employment impact of their decision to reciprocate the intrest. The end result of this type of relationship might end in termination of employment, harassment at work, poor credibility among other workers, and overwhelming amounts of stress. All things are fair in love and war but not in love and business.