Friday Five: Valentine’s at Work

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Valentine’s is big business. The flower, card and chocolate businesses can make their years based on this one made up holiday. This week we’re looking at five pieces on the intersection of Valentine’s and the world of work: the business of it, and the ways it can make for good and bad business in the workplace.

10 Horrifying Stories Of Workplace Romance

These are bad. Bad stories. But sometimes it’s good to reflect on all the ways an office can go wrong, before you set out on one.

Optimizing Romance

I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about the whys and wherefores of dating apps, but some economists do. There’s data and social science in amongst all the interpersonal angst and bad hookups. This piece makes the case for dating apps having an impact on inequality:

“The emergence of matching apps, for those seeking love or theatre tickets or a lift, has certainly made once-onerous tasks more convenient. They may also contribute to more profound economic change. Dating apps could strengthen the trend toward “assortative mating,” whereby people choose to couple with those of similar income and skills. By one estimate, the trend accounts for about 18% of the rise in income inequality in America between 1960 and 2005”

Online Dating Fraud Dips During Valentine’s Day

Looking for some last minute love? Rates of dating fraud decline leading up to Valentine’s Day – but not because the fraudsters are taking the the weekend off to spend with the sweeties. The change is due to a sudden increase of non-fraud date-seekers coming back online. But that doesn’t mean your last minute date hunting is any easier. The pool of potential dates swells dramatically, driving down the ratio of the legitimate to fraudulent lovelorn, but also making it harder to find your one and only VDay date.

I Hate Valentine’s Day, and Employers Should, Too

Jon Hyman, you stole my headline! I too hate Valentine’s Day and especially VDay at work. Interoffice card delivery? Twee but acceptable. I guess. Romantic gestures pulled from a Buzzfeed list? No thank you. And then there are the men who see Valentine’s Day as a prime excuse for some sexual harassment. We all know them. And we all know how quickly colleagues can dismiss such behaviour as being “in good fun.” Just say know to Valentine’s Day!

Almost 1 in 4 Workers Have Dated Their Bosses

CareerBuilder’s annual Valentine’s survey is out and… one in four workers are dating or have dated  their boss. Which begs the question: how many subordinates have these managers dated? Because there are more bosses than subordinates, the data shows that there is a group of managers who serially date their subordinates. While there’s nothing wrong with an office romance, a pattern of dating subordinates is ethically dubious – at best.

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