It is vital that you, as an employer are able to create a culture of inclusion within the workplace, where all employees are able to bring their full selves to work without fear of discrimination.
Here we give you our three top tips on how you can best support your LGBT+ employees and how VERCIDA.com can provide you with a platform to showcase the work that your organisation has been doing regarding diversity and inclusion (D&I) to a range of diverse individuals who are interested in finding out more about what your organisation has to offer and how they could fit into your workplace culture.
There are many benefits associated with employees feeling safe and supported in the workplace. By being able to bring their whole selves to work, individuals are likely to be more productive and create greater results for both the business and themselves.
Here are our three top tips to support an inclusive workplace for LGBT+ employees:
- Support the LGBT+ Community
There are many ways that your organisation can support the LGBT+ community, both inside and outside of your organisation. For example, you may wish to attend events, such as Pride, to show your support for the LGBT+ community. You could also attend local LGBT+ events, where you can learn more about the issues that the community may face and how your organisation can work to ensure that you are tackling these issues within the workplace and wider society.
There are also a number of ways that you can support LGBT+ colleagues within the workplace. For example, you could set-up a staff network group that gives employees the chance to meet others who they might not have otherwise met within the organisation to share their thoughts and opinions within a more social setting than the office. Staff Network Groups also provide employees with a good opportunity to come together as a community in order to feedback to the organisation on what they are doing well and how they might be able to improve. These groups can also provide those outside of the LGBT+ community with the chance to show their support for their LGBT+ colleagues and community by becoming allies.
VERCIDA works with a number of suppliers, who you can take a look at here. As a VERCIDA member, we are able to connect you with our suppliers in order to assist you in your diversity and inclusion needs, including those surrounding LGBT+ employees. They may also be able to offer you professional advice and assistance in order to help you achieve your D&I goals.
- Create an inclusive working environment
By introducing inclusive policies and best practises within the organisation, you can help to ensure that everyone is able to be their whole self during their time at work by taking a clear stance on where you, as an employer, stand in regards to discrimination and harassment. These best practises can also advise employees on how they can contribute to an inclusive and diverse working environment, no matter how small their actions may seem, they can make a difference.
In addition to putting these policies and practises into place, it is also important that your employees are in-the-know. For example, some may not know the full sexual orientation and gender identity definitions; this can be an important thing for them to understand in order to make sure that their LGBT+ colleagues feel comfortable at work. As an employer, you can organise training sessions and workshops in order to allow employees to learn more about a subject and ask any questions that they might have in a safe and secure environment. Being a member of VERCIDA gives you the chance to potentially attend LGBT+ workshops, or, depending on your membership level, gives you the chance for us to run a workshop with your business.
- Ask your employees for feedback and continuously improve
It is important that you, as an employer, continuously speak to your employees (whether this is in person or via email or survey) to find out their thoughts about the working environment, in order to be able to take this feedback on board and implement any necessary changes.
It is not enough to implement an initiative, such as an LGBT+ employee network group. Instead, there must be a continuous relationship between these groups, their colleagues and management in order to ensure that the needs of everyone are taken into consideration.
By taking feedback on-board, you will have the chance to continuously improve and develop your D&I initiatives in order to ensure that they are as effective as they can be. As a member of VERCIDA, you will have the chance to connect to our clients and suppliers in order to improve initiatives and get involved with other organisations events and learn from their experience.
All of our members are committed to creating an inclusive workplace, where diversity is celebrated and everyone is accepted for who they are, regardless of age, gender, race, sexual orientation and more.
Here are just three of our members who have LGBT+ initiatives in place:
Transport for London (TfL): TfL’s LGBT+ network, OUTbound represents the interests of LGBT+ staff, customers and families. It also ensures that LGBT+ people are represented fairly by the policies that they help to shape and the improvements that they initiate. TfL has recently shown its support for the LGBT+ community by getting involved in the London Pride events that have taken place, to find out more about this please click here.
PwC: PwC celebrates diversity and inclusion in the workplace, they aim to achieve an open, inclusive and welcoming culture where individuals’ differences and uniqueness are celebrated and everyone is supported to be themselves and fulfil their full potential. [email protected] is their inclusive business network for Gays, Lesbians and Everyone Else. They exist to support their members to be themselves, create professional opportunities in order to help individuals achieve success, influence the firm’s People agenda and to have a visible presence outside of PwC through community initiatives. PwC was a 2017 sponsor of London Pride.
Lloyds Banking Group: The LGBT colleague network group, Rainbow is one of the largest networks of its kind in the UK, with over 5000 members and supporters. Rainbow is committed to connecting, developing and supporting Lloyds Banking Group’s LGBT colleagues. The group was named as network of the year at the 2016 British LGBT Awards.
If you would like to see more LGBT related articles, please click here.
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 call 02037405973 or email [email protected] for more information.
We are also officially recommended by Disability Confident as a step on achieving Employer status, please click here for more information.