You often see office romances in films and on TV, but how common are they in real life and will the pandemic put an end to these relationships? According to Forbes, workplace relationships have been incredibly common in the US with 58% of employees engaging in a romantic relationship including 72% of over 50s at some point in their career.
Laws of Attraction
It makes a lot of sense when you consider that people spend so much of their time in the workplace and interacting with the same people each day. Mere exposure is known to increase attraction, but people will also have things in common with colleagues and know the same people so there is common ground, plus people will know more about their colleague than they would a random person that they meet in a bar.
It is easy to see why colleagues might be attracted to one another and, with less than half (41%) knowing their company’s policy regarding office romances, it is no surprise that so many embark on office romances. Interestingly, it seems that this might be becoming a thing of the past as younger generations seem to be taking a different approach to the over 50s when it comes to office romances.
Gen Z Oppose Office Romances
Printing specialists instantprint conducted research that found that a staggering 71% of Gen Z (16-24-year-olds) were completely against them. The reasoning for this was the potential difficulties that a breakup could cause, creating awkwardness for others in the office and instead focusing on their career. Additionally, you must also consider that internet dating has made it easier for people to meet people – something that was not previously as readily available to the over 50s.
So, what about office romances now that most are working from home? We caught up with our research respondents instantprint and found that office romances do appear to be dwindling, with only 10% of UK office staff confessing to engaging in a workplace romance since the start of the first lockdown in March 2020.
The Death of Office Romances?
Where previously people might have been able to bump into their crush at the water cooler or catch their eyes across the photocopier, people are now having Zoom meetings which just does not have the same effect. Instead, it seems that younger generations are using internet dating to find potential partners, and this ultimately will be welcome news to business owners as office romances can certainly create difficulties in the workplace.
It is interesting to see how attitudes to office romances have changed over the years and now how remote working could be the final nail in the coffin for these relationships. Ultimately, the younger generations see the potential issues with office romances and have other ways of meeting people which was not previously available to the older generations.