It wasn’t so long ago when people’s idea of using technology to interact with each other was sending messages, whether formal or informal, through good old-fashioned emails. Today, with the advent of social media, and the millennials basically being its rock stars, the lines between work and personal life is getting more and more blurred. Newsflash, children. Business and pleasure should, would, and could never be synonymous. We cannot seem to live a day without our iPhones and technology as a whole, has provided a way for us to do our tasks to an extent that the once evident social rules and barriers of private and work life have all but gone on a holiday, and if we’re not being careful, it may be a holiday for good.
Technology almost holds no bounds for everyone to multitask, but a text or chat that seems harmless can start a relationship between coworkers that goes beyond duty calls. Of course, it’s natural for a business to encourage employees to work as a team for obvious reasons. Teamwork not only motivates people to foster harmony in a workplace, they also become more productive since they feel less pressured individually. Working as a team build relationships, camaraderie, if you will, that goes beyond the office doors. Oftentimes people forge strong bonds with their coworkers and become friends for life. It would often start when you begin to have casual conversations during lunchtime. Or just simply asking work-related questions. It makes sense because you see each other almost every day, and maybe you both are in the same age bracket, thereby sharing almost the same interests. It is a good sign because it also fosters better communication between coworkers. You may also see sample human resource policies.
If anything, a sense of camaraderie at work make employees perform only better, as they don’t feel isolated. It’s just that sometimes relationships that blossom in the workplace can lead to consequences that are more than what you had bargained for: a beginning. It all starts with a not-so-innocent eye contact in the elevator, followed by a smile, a wink on the stairway, a little flirting near the coffee maker, a lengthy lunch together for days at a time, and you realize you’re together unofficially. In worst cases, relationships like this can lead to indecencies that can drag a person to embarrassment, harassment and can even result in a big blow to a person and a whole company’s reputation. With these consequences in mind, it is important to deal with office fraternization to ensure employees’ understanding as to the boundaries they cannot cross with their colleagues. You may also like policy templates.
The workplace is one fertile ground for growing relationships, and more so for those who are working long hours in cities. The amount of time you spend with each other far encompasses the hours spent with others outside of work, or with yourself for that matter. It is therefore understandable that intimate bonds are formed and continued even after work hours. Romance is as inevitable as it is easy. In fact, many lasting, stable relationships have started in the office, but let’s not forget that this doesn’t come without a price. We are human. We make mistakes and we make them especially when we are threatened of losing someone close to us, so much so that if we are involved romantically with someone at work, we allow our emotions to take control over reason. We forget that first and foremost, we are employees and as employees, we have a responsibility to fulfill our tasks every day and deal with our personal problems, well, personally and privately. You may also like security policy templates.
Romance at work has a tendency to put a business in jeopardy, more often than not. Businesses are not wrong to put policies in place, in order to deal or avoid issues about what is considered acceptable and what isn’t. Then again, policies regarding fraternization are not without challenges. Especially in a democratic society, where everyone feels entitled to express themselves to each other, sometimes notwithstanding professionalism. It is therefore important to have rules that would ensure understanding for both parties about each other’s duties and limitations, without necessarily compromising teamwork and camaraderie. While enforcing a non-fraternization policy for the whole company’s benefit, it is also important to understand the basic rights of an employee and ensure these aren’t compromised in the process. You may also see writing a company policy.
While some relationships are not necessarily harmful or illegal at work, others are fraught with issues that are difficult to address, especially when it becomes everybody else’s problem. A perfect and common example is two people having different positions in small business, with one’s rank higher than the other. A situation such as this is like a ticking time bomb. It contains conflicts brewing from different sides in an organization. Accusations about favoritism and indecent displays of affection will be on the rise, sooner than later, especially if one of you cannot keep it civil or professional. A formal policy written clearly will serve well to address these type of situations, avoiding scandals, malicious gossip, and degrading accusations. If employees go beyond professional boundaries, the situation is easier to deal with that if the relationships they develop with each other cause internal conflicts without violating any formal policy.
Personal relationships often go through difficult times regardless of the parties involved are dating or not. Tensions running high often continues to the office, especially if you are working with each other. Possible scenes of a shouting match at work hours, in view of everybody else, will be more likely and it will be difficult to finish tasks. Job performance is affected and even if the tension tones down a notch or two, another tension will be in the works when your personal issues together aren’t resolved. Everybody will feel it, and everybody’s work will be affected, whether you like it or not. When worse comes to worst, verbal or even physical abuse can occur at the office. You may also see printable business policy templates.
When an employee and a manager or supervisor become close, even if it’s just outside of work, there’s a good chance of favoritism being at play at work. And it will be obvious whether or not it’s intentional. It is, after all, the nature of people to protect and favor the ones close to them even to the extent of being unfair to those around them. Promotions are also difficult if fraternization is tolerated or allowed. People who are close to the manager or any person of authority in the management will have better chances than the rest, and it will cause silent rebellion, complaints, and conflicts that you and the company are really better off without. People will react, because why can’t they when they know that some of their rights are employees and their opportunities for growth are being thwarted? If faced with a person willing to fight these issues to the end, when you don’t have a clear set of rules or policy regarding fraternization, you may be getting yourself and the business in big trouble. It is very difficult for employers to object to workplace relationships. Matters like these are personal and objections will be in conflict with someone’s basic right to privacy, hence fraternization should be dealt with accordingly. You may also like company policy.
Employees who are naturally friendly and approachable, who like to mix with people and work with them, who compete with them instead of against them, tend to have a closer relationship with each other than with the rest of their colleagues, often resulting to unconscious exclusion. Groups are built within one team, outside of work, people suddenly want to be with a specific group of people and this isn’t good either. The employees who are excluded in office “cliques” or in the personal relationships outside of work may feel, well, excluded. The forming of cliques whether intentional or not takes away from the idea of teamwork and it takes away a chunk of contribution in the workplace. These groups can also cause decreased harmony and motivation in the workplace. You may also see HR policy templates.
Boundaries are necessary if a business wants to be successful. Policies clearly stating the lines between business goals and personal goals are a good way to provide and establish a common ground. It also allows for observing higher standards of professionalism in the workplace, benefiting all parties involved, to the common goal for growth. It may feel a tad awkward or forced to treat each other formally or business-like, especially if you are a casual, “people” person. Just remember that boundaries are there to serve as a protection of your relationship with colleagues. Without or even with very thin lines, neither your friendship nor your career or business will last very long. You have a professional life and a private life. Always think hard and long, whether or not it’s worth to cross the line in between. You may also see guidelines for policy templates.