An opportunity for authentic allyship

Failing to ask important, challenging questions? Perhaps you’re afraid of what the answer might be.

Our recent Talent Trends report: The Expectation Gap, taken by 50,000 people globally, saw 8% identifying as part of the LGBTQIA+ community. The findings from the report revealed a critical need for difficult conversations around discrimination.

  • 3 in 10 surveyed have felt discriminated against at some point in their career.
  • 64% of those discriminated against didn’t report it.
  • Only 41% feel they can be their authentic self at work.

Dig deeper into the data and learn what staff are saying about issues surrounding DE&I with our interactive tool:

Explore Talent Trends data

Amidst these challenges lies an opportunity for authentic allyship and meaningful change. As Peter Bromberg, a human-centred coach and consultant, aptly puts it,

When we avoid difficult conversations, we trade short-term discomfort for long-term dysfunction.

As we navigate these conversations, it's essential to understand the significance of events like Pride Month.

What is Pride Month? 

Pride Month, celebrated annually every June, is a vibrant, inclusive event dedicated to honouring the LGBTQIA+ community's history, achievements, and ongoing struggles. It’s marked by parades, events, and educational activities aimed at fostering acceptance, equality, and visibility for LGBTQIA+ individuals. Originating from the Stonewall Riots of June 1969, Pride Month serves as both a celebration of progress and a reminder of the continuous fight for LGBTQIA+ rights. 

The importance of allyship at work 

What is allyship? 

In the workplace, allyship means actively supporting and advocating for marginalised colleagues. It involves speaking up against discrimination, amplifying underrepresented voices, and taking tangible actions to promote diversity and inclusion. It's about creating a culture where everyone feels valued and empowered to succeed. 

Pride Month serves as a key reminder of the ongoing work needed for authentic allyship. While it's a time of celebration and visibility for the LGBTQIA+ community, it also underscores the importance of allyship beyond the festivities.  

Being an ally means showing up every day, not just during Pride Month, and actively supporting and advocating for marginalised communities. It's about listening, learning, and taking meaningful action to create inclusive spaces where everyone feels seen and valued. So, let's embrace the spirit of Pride Month as a catalyst for year-round allyship and continue our journey towards a more equitable and accepting world. 

How workplaces can celebrate Pride Month 

Pride Month is a time of celebration, reflection, and action. It’s an opportunity for workplaces to demonstrate their commitment to inclusivity and support for the LGBTQIA+ community.  

Here’s how you can make a meaningful impact: 

1. Raise awareness and educate 

Educational sessions: Organise webinars and workshops focusing on LGBTQIA+ history and current issues. Stay informed about LGBTQIA+ issues, terminology, and history. This knowledge will help you understand and support your colleagues better. 

Resource sharing: Distribute educational materials and create a glossary of LGBTQIA+ terms. This helps promote understanding and respectful communication among employees. 

2. Challenge exclusionary behaviour 

Promote inclusive language: Encourage the use of correct pronouns and inclusive terminology. This small step can make a significant difference in making everyone feel respected and valued. 

Address discrimination: Implement non-discrimination policies to handle exclusionary behaviour promptly and effectively. A clear stance against discrimination is crucial for creating a safe workplace. 

Don’t remain silent when witnessing exclusionary or discriminatory behaviour. Speak up and enforce policies that foster an inclusive environment. 

3. Share stories and realities 

Employee spotlights: Create a safe environment where LGBTQIA+ employees can share their experiences and stories. This fosters a culture of empathy and understanding. 

Open discussions: Host forums where all employees can discuss and learn about LGBTQIA+ issues. These discussions can break down barriers and build a more inclusive culture. 

4. Showcase Pride Month with decoration 

Office decor: While it's crucial to go beyond decorations in terms of actionable support, celebrating and decorating for Pride Month reinforces to your employees that they are always accepted for who they are, no matter who they love or how they identify. This promotes awareness and equality within the company and increases understanding of the issues faced by those in the LGBTQIA+ community.

Digital presence: Update your social media and website with Pride-themed graphics. This shows your support to a broader audience and reinforces your commitment to inclusivity.

5. Update email signatures

Pronouns: Encourage employees to add their pronouns to email signatures. This prevents misgendering and shows support for gender diversity.

6. Promote allyship and be ready to listen

Listen and learn: Actively listen to the experiences and concerns of your LGBTQIA+ colleagues. Understanding their perspectives can help you be a more effective ally.

Mental health support: Recognise the unique challenges faced by LGBTQIA+ individuals, making sure to provide or share resources and support for mental health such as Mind Out, a mental health charity for the LGBTQIA+ community or dedicated NHS services.

7. Provide media for your team to explore

LGBTQIA+ Media: Recommend books, films, and TV shows that explore LGBTQIA+ themes and stories. This can enhance understanding and empathy.

Pride Month is more than just a celebration; it’s a call to action for greater acceptance, understanding, and equality. By engaging with the LGBTQIA+ community, educating ourselves and others, and actively promoting inclusivity, we can make our workplaces—and the world—a better place for everyone.

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Are you ready to enhance your DEI initiatives or looking to hire diverse talent? Partner with Michael Page to support your journey towards a more inclusive workplace.

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