Head of the Department of Communication Studies, University of Ghana, Dr. Margaret Ivy Amoakohene, is urging companies to ensure they outline policies that address the consequences of office romance as a proactive way of dealing with its consequences.
Office Romance is a romantic affair between colleagues in the same work environment. Though workplace romances can lead to long-term relationships and even marriage, they can also result in uncomfortable situations for the people involved as well as their coworkers.
At the 2020 Ghana Administrators Professional Conference, Dr. Amoakohene outlining some of the negative consequences of indulging in workplace romance said “It creates a situation which has unhealthy outcomes for the organization.
Explaining further she revealed that “what we have found is that in most cases the two people are not single, one of them is married or both of them are married and that creates a lot of problems for you as an individual and for the organization. The health and wellbeing of employees of the organization are affected leading to distractions and thereby decreasing productivity.
Although some companies have explicit policies that frown on such actions, others appear to be silent. Dr. Amoakohene believes that once the act is inevitable, companies can best curb the challenges it presents by being proactive rather than reactive.
“The most important thing is for businesses to be proactive, active and have policies and regulations about office romance. When you have policies which are incorporated into your employment policies for everybody to sign onto, when people infringe on it, you won’t ask them to leave they will leave by themselves” she said.
Dr Amoakohene indicated that it is important for organisations to ensure a professional, respectful and an inclusive work environment where staff are given equal treatment with no room for favoritism.
According to her, “Nobody has an advantage over anybody because they are offering some services others have refused to offer, so the most important thing is being proactive rather than reacting. Don’t wait until it happens and then you don’t know what to do.”
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