Four in ten people have had a workplace romance, according to survey

Many bosses don't mind if their employees find love at work

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If the object of your affection is to be found at the desk across from you then never fear - because more than 60 per cent of managers don’t mind if their employees start a relationship in the workplace.

Four in ten people have enjoyed a workplace liaison, according to a new survey, but 64 per cent of bosses said they don't mind couples meeting at work as long as the relationship doesn't interfere with their jobs.

Research conducted by the Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM) found that many people still find romance at work, despite the prevalence of online dating and apps like Tinder and Happn.

In fact, 41 per cent of the survey's 1,005 respondents said they had enjoyed a workplace romance. Over a third (37 per cent) of those who found themselves attracted to someone at work went on to start a relationship and more than a quarter (27 per cent) ended up marrying or entering into a civil partnership with their colleague. Meanwhile, 32 per cent had a brief fling and 4 per cent enjoyed a quick kiss.

 

However, staff are still careful not to rock the boat, with 30 per cent of respondents saying they kept their romance under wraps. Just over a fifth (21 per cent) said their relationship with a colleague would be frowned upon and one in ten said their office relationship had a negative impact on their working life.

The survey also revealed one in ten people had a fling with their boss, while 37 per cent of respondents would consider starting a workplace romance in the future

Charles Elvin, chief executive of the ILM, said: "Our survey shows that workplace romances are inevitable and not as destructive on careers as people may fear. Employers may want to think twice before vetoing love at work, or they risk forcing staff to hide their relationships, creating a culture of secrecy and deceit.

"The key is how employers handle workplace relationships; if organisations and their managers set clear guidance or policies with boundaries, then certain situations can be prevented. It will also help if policies are communicated down from various members – as sometimes the boss is the last to know."

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