Hardy Comments for Article on Workplace Dating

March 3, 2020 | Employment & Labor

Tamika Hardy was interviewed for the February 28, 2020, Long Island Business News article, “Romance by the Water Cooler,” which discusses the problems that romantic relationships within the workplace can cause.

“It’s an issue that has gone to the forefront of employers’ minds because of the ‘me-too’ era,” Tamika noted. “Some employers are looking for guidance on whether their policy should be updated and what their training should look like with regard to issues that could arise from the dating relationship.” And if a workplace romance hits the rocks, another set of issues could be created. “You could have two employees who are now adversarial with each other, which, depending on what roles they are in, could affect productivity,” Tamika said. “It could affect whether assignments are given to certain employees. Maybe there’s a preference not to work with your ex-boyfriend or ex-girlfriend anymore.”

As for employment policies, “the company should maintain the right to change the reporting structure if a subordinate and a supervisor start dating. The company might move the subordinate to another group, a move that should be lateral and not punitive,” Tamika said. Regarding whether to require employees to disclose their relationships, “companies need to balance their litigation avoidance policies with their employees’ right to privacy,” Tamika added.

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