I work at a fast-growing tech startup where most employees are between 25 and 35, so the culture is very young and casual.
A department that works closely with my team recently hired an intern. She is very attractive and sensual (almost flirty) when communicates with other male coworkers. She gets many work-related favors done by others even though they are not documented or agreed processes. Her manager left the company and she somehow managed to get all her responsibilities, which left other more experienced members of her team quite disappointed. I have also noticed how she is now showing a bossy attitude towards them.
A few days ago she had asked some favors from some of my all-male team members, and they offered to help her even though they usually don't have time to give favors to other teams (and they normally don't just agree to do a favor to someone). I reprimanded my subordinates and told them not to spend any second helping her unless I approve it.
I am a young man as well, but try to be egalitarian in the way I manage my team and processes. On the one hand I don't want to favor someone just because they are more sensual and attractive (regardless of their gender of course), and I especially don't want such behaviors to affect processes. But on the other hand I am also afraid of creating a rift with the rising star of the company who is popular in this male-dominated, somewhat testosterone-driven startup environment.
On paper, I have everything to prove that I am right to force her into the official channels, but given our company size and culture, I am no longer sure whether that is the right approach from a political point of view.
And as a manager, I must worry about politics, so my question is how to handle this situation.