With rampant sexual harassment in the workplace, Facebook and Google are enforcing an interesting new rule when it comes to coworker relations.
Employees have been informed by their superiors that they are allowed to ask each other out, but one time — and only one time.
The tech giants say that if your coworker says no, or expresses they are not interested, that’s a wrap. Any other attempts at a date or flirting are completely crossing the line.
“Ambiguous answers such as ‘I’m busy’ or ‘I can’t that night,’ count as a ‘no,'” Facebook’s global head of employment law Heidi Swartz told the The Wall Street Journal.
The companies say they enforced the rule because it’s their reality. So many of their young employees are on the premises way more than an average 40-hour work week, and also take advantage of on-site cafes and gyms. So, it’s inevitable crushes will be formed.
More specifically for the two; if employed by Facebook, a potential date involving one person in a more senior position doesn’t necessarily have to be disclosed to HR. But the company asks that employees please go to HR when there is a conflict of interest, or a more serious relationship has formed or is forming.
Many companies are also creating “Love Contracts,” which explicitly hammer out an agreement that a couple at work who are dating keep to profesh in the workplace for the sake of everyone.
According to CareerBuilder, which conducted a Valentine's Day survey, “41 percent of workers have dated a co-worker—the highest amount since 2007.” The survey also found that 30 percent of those office romances resulted in marriage.
On the downside, they also found that 19 percent of office romances involved at least one person who was married at the time.
Of the office romances they found, “29 percent have dated someone in a higher position.” “Women are more likely to fall into this relationship dynamic than men (33 percent versus 25 percent). Furthermore, 15 percent of workers have admitted to dating their boss,” they report.
They also found that, while exciting, many office couples manage to keep their relationship on the DL, at least at work. “Nearly two in five workers who have dated someone in the office have kept the relationship under wraps. Men tend to do it more often than women, with men keeping their lips sealed 40 percent of the time compared to 37 percent among women.”
“Where you live also plays a role in the decision to keep an office romance secret. In the Northeast, 45 percent of workers keep quiet about their office relationships, compared to 41 percent in the south and 34 percent in the West. In addition to being the friendliest, Midwesterners are also the most open about their office relationships. Only 31 percent keep them secret.”
P.S. It’s real-life confession time! Watch Bravo’s new digital series, Secret Crush, to see what happens when real people reveal their secret crushes — will they fall in love … or fall flat on their faces?
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