Close relationships at work: Perceptions of the motives and performance of relational participants

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For a variety of reasons it is likely that romantic relationships between members of the same organization will become increasingly common. However, there exists very little information about persons’ reasons for entering close relationships with other employees, how non-involved parties view the relationships, and what the outcome of such pairings might be for the host organization. Interviews were conducted with persons who had either observed or been a part of an intimate relationship with a member of the same organization. The data suggest that (1) several different motives exist for becoming involved with a fellow employee, (2) these motives are attributed differently depending upon whether one is a participant in the relationship or an outside observer, (3) organizational romance does not inevitably cause performance decrements in the involved couple, and (4) while gossip about the relationship is to be expected, the tone of it depends upon the reasons why the involved persons initiated the relationship.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)179-193
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Social and Personal Relationships
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1987

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Communication
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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