Shavonnie J Deans
Dr Sonia Heywood
BUS520: Leadership and Organizational Behavior
July 22, 2012
In today’s society, a majority of one’s time is spent inside of the workplace. Due to
working so closely with the opposite sex, some may develop interest in others and a relationship
is developed. According to Ruth Houston, author of Problems that Consensual Relationship
Agreements Cause, today’s workplace is the new singles bar or place for people to engage into
extramarital affairs. These relationships often raise eyebrows, lead to whispers at the water
cooler and blank stares in the break room leaving some co-workers in discomfort.
In order to protect themselves as well as the employees organizations have incorporated
into their policies consensual relationship agreements or CRA’s. Hellriegel and Slocum define
CRA’s as a written contract in which the romantically involved agree to acknowledge certain
terms in regards to their relationship. These contracts are used in the best interest of
organizations to avoid any issues that may arise such as sexual harassment, discrimination or
violations of workplace conduct policies. This paper will discuss the benefits of using
consensual relationship agreements (CRA’s), arguments used against it, the ethical principles
involved as well as other options that can be used in place of CRA’s.
Should all organizations include consensual relationship agreements in their conduct
polices? Some may say that it is a violation of privacy and opens the door for others to intrude in
their personal lives. On the other hand, others would agree that CRA’s should be incorporated
into the conduct policies because they will protect them in the long run.
One of the benefits of having CRA’s is to reduce the risk of sexual
harassment.(Hellriegel & Slocum, 2011) Example being if two employees decided to enter into a
relationship, dated for... [continues]
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