According to Vault.com's 2010 Office Romance Survey, almost 60 percent of respondents admitted to having participated in some form of workplace romance.
Even in environments where relationships are permitted in the workplace between managers and subordinates, those involved in these relationships need to maintain a professional distance while on the job.
Not all relationships last forever, of course, but if and when the relationship between manager and subordinate ends, the work relationship may need to continue.
When co-workers mix business with pleasure, it's important for employers to take note.
Whether it's a drop in workplace morale or a sexual harassment lawsuit, office romances have the potential to cause big trouble for businesses of all sizes.
Dianne Shaddock Austin, president of Easy Small Business HR, said there is a clear downside to colleagues getting involved in romantic relationships.
"All employers should be concerned about workplace romances," Austin told Business News Daily.
While all office romances have the potential to cause problems, those that involve a supervisor and one of their subordinates can have the largest ramifications.
[6 Ways to Handle Annoying Co-Workers] Areva Martin, managing partner of the Los Angeles-based law firm Martin & Martin LLP, said in those situations there can be appearances of favoritism when it comes to work assignments and pay raises, which can negatively affect an entire office.
That can be uncomfortable for both parties as well as for co-workers. Her work has been published in "Entrepreneur," "Complete Woman" and "Toastmaster," among many other trade and professional publications.
She has a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Wisconsin and a Master of Arts in organizational management from the University of Phoenix.
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