Premium Essay

Consensual Relationships at Work

In: Business and Management

Submitted By vcolon12
Words 1697
Pages 7
| The Case for Consensual Relationship Agreements | BUS 520 – Leadership and Organizational Behavior/Assignment 1: Consensual Relationship Agreements Case study | | Victor A. Colon | 4/22/2012 |

|

Introduction
Human beings spend their lives interacting with others. In turn, a great portion of this interaction occurs at work. Professional relationships are important to build as individuals advance in a career. It is not enough to have a good set of skills as progress in a career. Personalities go a long way towards opening doors and opportunities. While one must strive to act and behave ethically at work, learning to juggle professional behavior with friendship is important. Many times employees and managers need to be approachable while maintaining integrity and professionalism. Employees also need to know when to set certain boundaries of behaviors so as to keep the integrity required to fulfill the job. With that said, all humans have emotional, spiritual and physical needs. Studies show, Vandewater (2012), “the number of people who have had an interoffice relationship has risen to 59 percent--with half of those respondents reporting having developed a serious, long-term relationship with a colleague.” Those same studies also report that an alarming majority of employers do not have a policy regarding workplace relationships. Riccobono (2011) stated, “While often harmless, consensual co-worker relationships can create a myriad of problems for the employees involved, their co-workers, and their employer. In addition to the obvious distractions of the romance, when the relationship sours, ends or is no longer consensual, the potential for sexual harassment, discrimination, or retaliation claims increases.”
Are consensual relationship agreements (CRAs) necessary at work? Whom do they intend to protect? Are there any valid reasons why a…...

Similar Documents

Free Essay

Consensual Relationship

...Consensual Relationship Agreements Consensual Relationship Contracts are often referred to as “Love Contracts.” These contracts are fairly new and have only recently been introduced into the workforce; they date back approximately to six or seven years ago. (Kellog forum) A consensual relationship agreement (CRA) is a written contract in which many companies are now presenting to employees who are romantically involved, within the same company. The contracts are often presented by human resources and the parties involved are asked to voluntarily sign them. Not to only protect the companies interest but the employees as well. The “Love Contracts” are being implemented by companies to assure that company policies and company conduct ethics are not breached by the romantic involvement between two of its employees. Workplace romances and relationships are becoming more commonplace as work hours are becoming longer and the concept of “team building” is become more widespread in the workforce. Most companies at some time used to have policies that prohibited interoffice dating. Now many experts warn against such policies stating that the outcome often concluded with employees rebelling against the policy and dating for the thrill. (Hellriegel, Slocum 65) Corporate culture had to become more flexible due to the change in the dynamics of their employees. In an environment where individuals with common interests are working in close proximity for 40 or more hours per week, an......

Words: 1726 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationship Case Study

...Consensual Relationship Agreement What is Consensual Relationship Agreement? Workplace is one of the most important places in our lives. We spend about one-third to half our life in the workplace. In the workplace blossom many romances, but the break-up of relationships is a common source of sexual harassment claims. Consensual Relationship Agreement (CRAs). Consensual relationship policy is an important tool in managing the risk of sexual harassment claims and reducing perceptions of favoritism. However, it must be considerately created and administered with care. I will analyze the concerns of CRAs at workplace, critics of CRA, the ethical intensity of CRSs from the perspective of the employer, specific ethical principles of CRSs, argument against and for the use of CRAs in my current workplace Ruby Tuesday restaurant. The Find Law website mentions a survey developed more than 15 years ago, on 1995, estimates that 80 percent of all employees have either observed or been involved in a romantic relationship at work. Employees have asserted claims for sexual harassment based on the theory that they can't receive the same benefits because they are not "sleeping with the boss." However, most courts have rejected this argument because such a consensual relationship disadvantages both male and female employees equally. The exception, of course, is where a supervisor propositions many employees, and only those who acquiesce receive......

Words: 1454 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationship Agreements

...Consensual Relationships Agreement Case study Argue for the use of Consensual Relationship Agreements (CRAs) in your current (or future) workplace. When it comes to work environments, there are many issues. One big issue that seems to be a problem when it comes to the workplace is the issue of sexual harassment and other problems related to this. In the workplace, it is important to know what is going on. It is inevitable that at some point, love will cross paths of two workers who happen to work at the same job. In every job environment, there are women who work with men. Because of this, it is important that all HR departments lay the foundation in training of what the boundaries are when it comes to one another. Relationship that fail can end up in sexual harassment cases which in turn exploits the job in a negative way. By having consensual relationship agreements, any cases of any type of harassment can be avoided. In some instances, jobs have found it difficult to decipher between acts that were wanted and acts that actually were not. When two people are in intimate relationships and they both work together, this can become an issue. If two people are involved in a relationship and then the relationship fails, can it be deemed as sexual harassment if one partner makes an unwanted gesture? If two people are involved in a relationship and the manager is not aware of it, can the manager deem it as sexual harassment if one partner reports the other because of......

Words: 2033 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationship

...Assignment #1 – Consensual Relationship Agreement Tammy Cochran Leadership and Organization -BUS 520 Dr. Reeley October 26, 2012 Abstract Consensual Relationship Agreements are common among many corporations or companies addressing workplace romance. In today's work place, romances and the related topics of sex and privacy have become important issues confronted by most employers. With more employees working longer days and spending so much time together on the job, romantic relationships are developing more frequently. Workplace romance may be the only option for employees whose workload limits their outside activities, but for employers, this trend may prove to be a problem as the potential liability associated with these relationships rises. Some organizations ban all workplace dating, while other employers have no policy at all to address these issues. Some companies now, find policies as being favorable and others find it to be harmful to the workplace output. The research has concluded that CRAs are more often a waste of time and are more pushy then helpful. Most organizations fall somewhere in between, with precise or at least unspoken policies that prevent or discourage certain workplace relationships. The workplace is for work not romance and if a relationship does come about it should be kept separate and should not have an effect on the workplace. According to Hellriegel & Slocum (2011), A Consensual Relationship Agreement (CRA) is......

Words: 1750 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Consensual Relationship Agreement

...analysis of the Consensual Relationship Agreements Case Study Assignment 1 By: STUDENT NAME: Arlette Lamsa To: Dr. Evangeline Jefferson Professor: COURSE NAME: Bus 520: Leadership and organization Behavior STRAYER UNIVERSITY WASHINGTON, DC January, 2013 Consensual Relationship Agreements Case Study Introduction: The purpose of this project is to examine the Consensual Relationship Agreement case study. By Definition, consensual relationship Agreement indicates an agreement read and signed by both Employers and employees by highlighting and confirming an obviously romantic relationship between both parties. The use of consensual relationship Agreement policy in general at the workplace, is fundamental for the employers and also employees. In many organizations, employees are in risks of potentials sexual harassments. But inevitably, some workers engage in a romance adventure at the office. Sometimes those romances end in a not so good term with pretty bad consequences. According to Hellriegel and Slocum (2011), the characteristics of a consensual Relationship agreement is defined as contract that set boundaries on certain office romance situations. They go as the following: decreasing sexual harassment litigation risk, reducing perceptions of favoritism, creating a forum to discuss professional workplace behavior, and reminding dating employees the lack of privacy in the workplace. This is to ensure all relationships are......

Words: 1328 - Pages: 6

Free Essay

Consensual Relationship Agreements

...Consensual Relationship Agreements Strayer University Robert Guest Dr. Larry Hughes BUS520 In many and most large organizations the possibilities of a relationship is a very real situation. Spending at least most cases 40 plus hours a week which is more than most individuals spend at home or out looking for relationships gives a person the ability to create closer relationships with the opposite sex at the work place then it would anywhere else. Because of this there have been many opinions on whether or not to make the use of Consensual Relationship Agreements a standard practice among the work place. In today’s workplaces many organizations either prohibit or sway against any romantic engagements with other employees within their workplaces however, there are other companies that tend to let it happen and look the other way. According to the Society for Human Resources Management had no policy regarding the workplace relationship (Hellriegel & Slocum, 2010). This was until the adoption of the Consensual Relationship Agreements that turned into a contract for employees to ensure they are not allowing any workplace relationships reduce the efficiency of their work and also to protect the organizations from any legal issues that may arise from the involvement of employees and the possibility of bad breakups from relationships. A Consensual Relationship Agreement is an contract between a employee and management that states that the employee will not......

Words: 1728 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Consensual Relationship

...Running head: Consensual Relationship Agreements 1 Consensual Relationship Agreements Case Study Tara Brooks Professor Alston Organizational Behavior, BUS 520 4 November 2012 Consensual Relationship Agreements 2 Abstract The dating scene is not easy these days, especially for dedicate singles putting in 60-plus hours at the office every week. But if you've had your eye on the gorgeous guy or girl in the next cubicle, consider that the consequences of intra-office dating can far outweigh the convenience of a consensual workplace relationship. Consensual relationships agreements are widely in the workplace in American organizations. These agreements entail and outline the dos and don’ts of co-existing with fellow colleagues while maintaining a romantic relationship with them. The public display of affection, favoritism, and lack of productivity are all addressed and managed within these documents. Some organizations argue that these documents should not be used, while others believe they should be enforced In this paper, I will discuss the argument for the use of consensual relationship agreements, create a counter argument against the use of CRAs, discuss the ethical principles involved in the principles involved in the use of CRAs and create one (1) other option besides......

Words: 1410 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationship Agreement

...Consensual Relationship Agreement Leadership and Organizational Behavior January 22, 2012 Abstract In today’s fast paced society women and men spend nearly forty percent of their week in the workplace. Due to the time spent working together; many workers generate a common interest in one another, therefore leading to workplace romance. Many companies protect themselves and their workers with Consensual Relationship Agreements or CRA; a CRA is a written contract in which romantically involved partners acknowledge workplace policies regarding romance. The CRA is confirmation of their relationship being voluntary and consensual; ensuring that the statutes of the relationship does not affect the dynamics of the workplace ethical infrastructure. Both parties agree to abide by the employers antidiscrimination, anti-harassment, and workplace conduct policies. Many employers and employees find that CRAs can be both beneficial and detrimental in the workplace; affecting personal relationships, workplace infrastructure, and productivity. There are several benefits that CRAs provide in today’s workplace not all companies have policies in place but they are beneficial to productivity. Consensual Relationship Agreements create boundaries for workplace relationships and legally binds employees to behave in a professional manner. A majority of companies do not have any policy in place. The dynamics of the workplace was jeopardized because several people dated romantically.......

Words: 1445 - Pages: 6

Free Essay

Consensual Relationship Agreement

...Consensual Relationship Agreement: A written agreement or contract in which the romantically involved parties acknowledge and adhere to specific guidelines in the workplace (Hellriegel/Slocum p 65). I have not worked for a company that had such an agreement. Matter of fact, reading this case study on Diversity Competency in the Organizational and Behavior text was the first I’ve heard of it; however, I personally have had a workplace romance. Several of my close married friends met their significant other in the workplace. Articles online specific to CRA’s declared they have only been around for six or seven years (Higher Education WebBlog, Consensual Relationship Agreement 5/23/2011) and 75% of employers do not have a policy on workplace relationships (Employment Law Alert, The Importance of a Workplace Romance Policy, 5/2/2011). Where it can be the epitome of distraction, it seems the healthcare industry is swarming with office romances. Many of these romances are temporary with harsh endings. A great employee might not want to continue working for an employer if an office romance went sour. This alone would be a strong argument for a Consensual Relationship Agreement. The text identifies the following guidelines in a CRA (Hellriegel/Slocum p 65):  Their relationship is voluntary and consensual  They agree to abide by the employer’s antidiscrimination, antiharassment, and workplace conduct policies.  They promise to report any perceived harassment to......

Words: 1960 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationships

...Consensual Relationship Agreements case Study Steven C. Young Strayer University Organizational Behavior Professor Stewart W. Edwards April 20, 2012 Consensual Relationship Agreements Case Study p.1 Argue for the use of Consensual Relationship Agreements (CRAs) in your current or future workplace Consensual Relationship Agreements (love contracts), before you can argue the case for or against them you have to first understand what they are. A Consensual Relationship Agreement (CRA) is basically a written contract in which the romantically involved parties acknowledging the following things: the relationship is voluntary and consensual, they agree to abide by the employer’s antidiscrimination, antiharassment, and workplace conduct policies, promise to report any perceive harassment to management, if it occurs, they agree to behave professionally and not to allow the relationship to affect their performance, agree to avoid behavior that offends others in the workplace, and to not engage in favoritism. After further researching CRAs if do believe my current workplace would benefit from using it. I currently work in a call center which is dominated by female employees and the age difference is almost non-existent amongst representatives, supervisors, and associate directors. There is daily interaction between all parties and in human nature there are going to be instances of two individuals being attracted to each other. Currently there is a policy......

Words: 1802 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationship Agreement

...Organizational Behavior, Dr. Wilkerson Week 3, Assignment 1 Consensual Relationship Agreements Case Study April 22, 2012 Tiffany Hurt Reference page 1. Organizational Behavior – Hellriegel/Slocum 2011 Custom edition In my current workplace, I believe that having a Consensual Relationship Agreement (CRA) in place would be beneficial to the agency. Considering all the training, we now have to take pertaining to sexual harassment, ethics, and security, etc. having the Consensual Relationship Agreement in place could cut down on various lawsuits, and sexual harassment claims filed by employees, saving the agency time and money with investigating employees when time and money can be spent more productively within the agency. I have witnessed a few relationships develop within our agency and a few resulted in marriage but those relationships were kept very quiet and no one was aware the individuals were dating. In my opinion the only way the couples were not scrutinized is because they kept their relationships a secret and they were very lucky and professional with one another while in the workplace so that no coworkers were able to detect they were dating one another. It is a given fact that individuals spend more time at work then at home, which sometimes results in relationships being developed when your spend vast amounts of time with coworkers on projects, and work assignments. Employees’ start to form basic relationships with coworkers and bonds began to......

Words: 1348 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationship Aggreements

...520: Consensual Relationship Agreements Case Study Assignment I Angela Denise Nelson Danielle Camacho BUS 520: Leadership and Organizational Behavior July 22, 2012 Workplace relationships will eventually occur as employees of all interest and backgrounds are put into a melting pot. Some say that the workplace has become the new singles bar. Also, the workplace has become a place for extramarital affairs and some same sex relationships. As people share common interest, attractions occur, eventually leading to a relationship. It is important for employers to realize that workplace relationships are going to occur and to have policies set in place. It is not a suggested practice to forbid workplace relationships, but it is necessary to maintain the integrity of the organization and to maintain a functional office environment. Unfortunately, workplace relationships can lead to accusations of poor judgment, breach of ethics, favoritism, lost of productivity, poor employee morale, sexual harassment claims and workplace violence. Consensual relationship agreements or “love contracts” should no be used as the sole means of protection from litigation, they should be used to supplement a business’s antiharassment policy, and other legalities that may occur upon the demise of the relationship. Consensual relationship agreements are written contracts in which employees involved in a workplace relationship......

Words: 1965 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationship Agreement

...| Consensual Relationship Agreement | | | The office seems to be a hotbed of romance and a more effective one than dating Web sites or the corner bar. The social nature of many workplaces provides the perfect environment to get to know your co-workers. Between get-togethers every Friday after work with alcohol, food, and possibly music (which leads to dancing) and the softball and volleyball teams, barbeques and pot lucks, there are plenty of opportunities for employees to enjoy each other’s company. HR Solutions’ 2009 National Normative data confirms that 88 percent of all workers strongly feel the people they work with are friendly. We all spend so much time at work and are often attracted to people who share common interests; it only makes sense that one of these very friendly co-workers is going to eventually jump to the top of your dating to-do list. A study by Vault.com shows that almost half of us have been romantically tied to someone at work and that workplace relationships often can be successful; roughly one-quarter result in long-term relationships and even marriage. It is believed that people are more likely to date a coworker in the office rather than someone outside of the workplace. Although, romantic relationships are common in the office, many employers are increasingly turning to consensual relationship agreements. A Consensual Relationship Agreement (CRA) is essentially a written “contract” in which the romantically involved parties......

Words: 1914 - Pages: 8

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationships

...counterparts within the workplace. Trying to manage human nature and the evolution of interpersonal relationships at work have a positive and negative effect on all parties involved; directly and indirectly. Relationships in general are emotional roller coasters therefore anyone choosing to engage in romance in the workplace must be made aware that they are taking a gamble. Consequently, employers attempting to permit these interactions will also be taking a risk. Implementing a Consensual Relationship Agreement (CRA) may be beneficial with forming workplace boundaries and aid in the facilitation of continuity and maintenance of workplace efficiencies when these types of relationships exist. CRAs are virtually “love contracts” which implement guidelines and agreements between employer and employee regarding the handling of workplace romantic interactions. This type of agreement constitutes the relationship as consensual between individual adults, requires the parties to attest to the fact that it will not hinder the job performance of either individual, in the event the relationship is short lived it identifies the potential consequences of any irreconcilable differences resulting from the romantic relationship, and holds the employer harmless and releases the employer from liability of any negative consequences resulting from the continuation or dissolution of the relationship. Contracts of this type of personal nature are prone to be intrusive and easily susceptible to......

Words: 1605 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Consensual Relationship

...CONSENSUAL RELATIONSHIP AGREEMENTS CASE STUDY BY UCHECHUKWU OHIRI JULY 21, 2012 CONSENSUAL RELATIONSHIP AGREEMENTS In life there is no predetermined place or time to start a relationship with anyone. Therefore, a relationship between a man and a woman could start from meeting in the mall, in the church, in school, in a night club or in a work place. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) states that one-third of every relationship starts at work (Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 2011). People now-a-days work longer hours and hardly have anytime to socialize outside of work. In fact, BLS indicates that of every ten working Americans, one works more than sixty hours a week (Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 2011). Also, the number of working class women continues to increase thereby increasing the likely hood of a workplace romance. BLS also states that about forty six percent of the workforce today is made up of women (Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), 2011). So, since statistics indicate that there is a rise in workplace romance, it is proper for companies or organizations to protect themselves from any future sexual harassment suit or any suit bordering on discrimination to have some sort of policy or agreement such as the consensual relationship agreements (CRA). CRA is a written contract between the romantically involved and the company or organization that employs them. According to Hellriegel and Slocum, both the romantically involved and the company or......

Words: 2011 - Pages: 9