Given that June is Pride Month, many businesses have rainbow logos and flags flying in the workplace or on social media. What does that represent, though? How can HR directors genuinely ensure that their initiatives to help and ally with LGBTQ+ workers really accomplish these goals? For Pride Month 2023, HR technology can play an important role.
Why is Pride Month Important for HR?
Every year in June, during Pride Month, individuals all over the globe participate in parades, events, and other activities to celebrate the broad spectrum of the LGBTQ+ community. The Stonewall Uprising, which occurred in June and served as the catalyst for the LGBTQ+ rights movement, is, however, not as well known.
The Stonewall Inn, a well-known meeting spot for members of the LGBTQ community in New York City’s Greenwich Village, was stormed by police early on June 28, 1969. Although it was not the first such raid on a homosexual club, it became an important turning point when the customers and, eventually, thousands of protesters chose to resist.
LGBTQ+ rights have advanced since that time. In addition to ruling that employees are protected from discrimination at work because of their sexual orientation or gender identity in 2020, the Supreme Court found that same-sex marriage is legal in each of the fifty states in 2015.
While celebrating progress and change during Pride Month, it’s just as important to make sure that all workers have access to policies, procedures, benefits, and training that encourage an inclusive and psychologically safe workplace.
If your workers are unable to be themselves at work, it’s little use to hire a diverse team from a hiring standpoint. It’s important to foster an inclusive workplace culture if you want to ensure that your diversity initiatives are truly making an impact. By fostering an inclusive environment in the workplace, you can truly celebrate Pride Month.
Ideas for Celebrating Pride Month in the Workplace
If you are looking to emphasize your DEI culture and offer LGBTQ+ employees a special forum in June, here are a few excellent ideas for celebrating Pride Month.
1. Create a knowledge repository to drive awareness
To begin with, several coworkers who may appear well-intentioned and ally-aspiring might not be familiar with PRIDE Month. Explain in detail how the month of June is set aside as a time to honor the liberties attained by members of the LGBTQ+ community. HR tools like your company intranet can help put together a knowledge repository. You can also launch a learning course using your LMS.
2. Host workshops that focus on LGBTQ+ voices
A workshop is an ideal way to highlight LGBTQ+ perspectives among your workforce and encourage participants to consider how they may foster an inclusive workplace. Smaller breakout rooms may provide secure areas for staff members to express their own opinions and experiences during sessions, which are often conducted by independent experts.
Your business can succeed and expand if you provide an extensive session where non-LGBTQ+ coworkers can acquire knowledge about appropriate language, and pronouns, as well as basic guidelines for inclusivity. Fortunately, collaboration tools and platforms will facilitate such workshops even for remote and hybrid workers, so that everyone can participate. You can also integrate with HR survey tools to get employee feedback on the sessions.
3. Revisit your pronoun policy
Creating an inclusive workplace can be one of the simplest ways to help LGBTQ+ workers feel at ease. Inspect your technology stack first. For instance, there should be more options in gender fields beyond male, female, or other. Inform your staff that you have been working on adjustments if such alternatives are not currently available.
HR can also help non-binary employees by letting all employees know they can add their pronouns anywhere they use their name at work, like the email signature, company biography, human resource information systems (HRIS), official social media, or LinkedIn profile.
4. Launch a Pride Month training module
If your employer has never before observed Pride Month, 2023 is as good a time as any to start. Conversations can be kickstarted in a terrific manner with structured training. Promote the programs that foster equality, inclusion, and diversity. Include training on subjects such as coming out at work, comprehending pronouns, and helping coworkers who are transitioning.
To enable learners to independently investigate the subject matter, promote self-directed learning throughout your organization. Emotional intelligence, compassion, subconscious bias, and the notion of privilege are other relevant areas of study.
5. Update your company’s logo across employer branding materials
Using Pride colors in your company’s branding, like within your email signature and logo, is a strong statement. There are several ways HR teams can participate in this activity using technology. For example, make sure your company’s logo sports Pride colors on LinkedIn and other prominent job boards. Tailor your internal employee newsletter with rainbow stripes, especially for this month.
6. Take this time to conduct a survey centered around LGBTQ+ issues
Talking to LGBTQ+ workers about their concerns about what’s occurring at work is perhaps the most straightforward way to help them. HR managers may find out when unfair practices, disparity, or dissatisfaction occur by carrying out regular surveys.
Do certain bosses practice microaggressions? What is the level of psychological safety that LGBTQ+ employees feel in different locations and working models? Asking the workforce for their opinions on the subject could lead to an internal change. This really makes a difference and boosts the overall engagement and experience of employees.
7. Introduce new (or updates to) reporting tools
HR should be ready to address employee complaints, but there may be a number of barriers that prevent this from always being simple or practical. Employees who identify as LGBTQ+ often refrain from reporting discrimination, intimidation, and intolerance out of worry that nothing will alter the situation. Many people fear that speaking up would have an adverse effect on their careers.
Even in the best settings, workers face this; therefore, HR has to go above and beyond to support their freedom to speak out and make the process as easy as possible.
Employees are able to clearly see that HR executives and professionals are there to listen and provide help, thanks to anonymous reporting mechanisms. Additionally, HR departments must enforce a zero-tolerance approach as well as take necessary action. A refreshed grievance reporting policy and tool, on the occasion of Pride Month, announces that you are ready to invest in the values that you profess.
8. Organize a virtual parade
The most well-known method for commemorating the month is with PRIDE parades. These gatherings may be enjoyable as individuals get to show off their skills and respect for one another.
Hosting a virtual pride march might keep your community involved and connected if you have staff members who are spread across the globe. You may do this by asking your staff to post photographs and videos on any platform, showcasing how they celebrate Pride Month.
If you are a small team, the parade can also take the form of an informal meeting where everyone gets a chance to share their perspectives, stories, and talents.
9. Connect with the local community
Giving back is a fantastic way to celebrate Pride Month. While June is a fantastic month to support LGBTQ+ organizations, this should be a year-round endeavor. To support Black, Indigenous, or POC-led LGBTQ+ groups, think about making monthly donations. You can also look for nearby LGBTQ+ organizations to collaborate with or volunteer with.
You could conduct a company-wide survey to learn more about the issues that your employees care about most. A great strategy is to collaborate with DEI-friendly universities and institutions in your area so you are able to bring on more varied LGBTQ+ community members as speakers.
HR can be an important business collaborator, partner, and ally for this cause – creating inclusive activities that are advantageous to everyone. They can also foster a psychologically secure atmosphere throughout Pride Month and the rest of the year. This enables LGBTQ+ workers to be themselves at their place of employment and contribute fully to the success of the company.
Knowledge and positive action on DEI values is what will make Pride Month 2023 truly special. Learn more about the 20 ways to improve diversity in the workplace, the top 7 diversity recruitment platforms, and – of course – what gender diversity truly means by reading the right resources. Happy Pride Month!