Staff who feel they have to hide their sexual orientation at work lose confidence and feel isolated from colleagues, says survey
Failing to be inclusive of employees of different sexual orientation can have disastrous effects on staff morale and productivity, according to a new survey.
More than 80% of those polled in a study of 200 senior lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) business figures by LGBT network OUTstanding said that being unable to be themselves at work damages people’s confidence and isolates them from workmates.
Of those surveyed, 85% said that gay employees who stay in the closet waste valuable energy pretending to be someone they’re not, while 86% said that the fear of being outed to colleagues makes them anxious.
The majority of respondents said that being open about their sexuality at work was often less difficult than they anticipated, with 60% saying that workplace bullying was not a concern.
However, the situation is not as rosy further down the career ladder. Less than a quarter of business people surveyed said that they believed middle managers had an inclusive attitude towards LGBT workers.
As such, a third of LGBT executives are calling for greater boardroom diversity, more openly-gay and transgender role models in business and more mentoring opportunities for LGBT staff.
“Whilst we’ve taken huge strides in terms of diversity and LGBT equality in the UK, for many, the perception is that it’s safer to stay in the closet if they want to get on at work,” said Suki Sandhu, CEO and founder of OUTstanding. “In fact, 62% of students who were out at uni go back into the closet when they start work.”
“It’s vital that those in leadership positions use their influence to communicate that by being authentic and yourself at work; business professionals will be more confident, perform better and ultimately boost the business’s bottom line.”
VERCIDA works with over one hundred clients who are committed to creating an inclusive work
environment. If you are an employer and interested in working with VERCIDA to promote your
diversity and inclusion initiatives and attract the best candidates, please email
[email protected] for more information.
Did you know that users who have filled in their profile details are 42 times more likely to get matched with the right employer?
Help us find the best workplace for you by sharing more about yourself.
We will never disclose your information with others.
Alastair Mills is a business development and sales manager at Siemens where he develops future markets and projects within offshore wind and grid integration.
Alastair grew up in the Wirral in West K...
Fostering a diverse and inclusive workforce benefits our people and our company. We want every Arcadian to feel proud to be themselves at work.
#ProudToBeMe is shorthand for our commitment to create a...
EIS Performance Lifestyle Advisor Josh Rudd on the Pride in Water initiative
English Institute of Sport (EIS) Performance Lifestyle Advisor Josh Rudd hopes British Swimming s Pride in Water initiative can help reinforce that elite sport is about more than medals.
The launch of...
Bexley AC has been an integral part of my life for many reasons. It is where my love for hurdles and athletics started. I met so many amazing people who have helped and supported me since the day I m...