As 2022 gets under way, diversity and inclusivity remain hot topics. Although enormous progress has been made, there is still lots of work to do to make the workplace an area where the LGBTQ+ community can feel genuinely accepted and embraced.
The good news is that there is an appetite for change and there are some top companies leading by example, showing what good practice and inclusivity look like.
Here are just a few of the measures being taken by companies to ensure they are inclusive.
Most companies have a policy on diversity but does yours really mean anything? Setting out your intentions in writing is a vital first step, but if you don’t proactively enforce them, then you may as well not bother.
You need to have clear consequences for any member of staff who is found to be breaching your policies on inclusivity – and you need to be prepared to enforce them. If you fail to take allegations of harassment or discrimination seriously, you undermine your company’s whole ethos on inclusivity.
Cheque the wording of the policy to make sure there are no unintentional exclusions; there are model policy wordings available to help you do this. Once you are confident that your policies cover everyone, make sure that you communicate them clearly to all staff, along with the consequences of breaching them.
Being inclusive shouldn’t be a tick-box exercise; your company should genuinely want to ensure that its workplace is welcoming to all. This means inclusivity and diversity should be at the heart of everything you do so that all employees feel equally valued and welcome.
There are some companies who have embraced this approach wholeheartedly and are now reaping the rewards. GVC Holdings is a global gaming enterprise, which includes the leading casino brand PartyCasino, who has recognised the importance of being a faithful ally.
The culture at GVC is positive and celebrates each employee’s individuality. GVC believes that they have a part to play on the global stage and that by being committed to inclusivity, they can help to fight against the continued oppression and identity erasure which is still prevalent in some parts of the world.
Employees at GVC have been quick to praise the company and the measures it has implemented, which include establishing a LGBTQ+ network. By taking such positive steps, GVC attracts and retains some of the best talent on the market.
Even if you want to be an ally, it’s not always easy to know where to start, or to understand the burning issues that need to be tackled. This is why it’s important to seek advice from experts in the field who can walk you through your policies and understand where there may be gaps.
LGBTQ+ groups can provide everything from training to HR consultancy, and you shouldn’t be afraid to use their knowledge to the fullest extent. By appointiing an independent advisor, you will not only ensure that your company policies are genuinely inclusive, but you’ll be sending a clear message to your employees about your intentions.