How to Find Employers That Welcome LGBTQ Employees

How to Advance Your Career

Across the country and around the world, June is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning (LGBTQ) Pride Month, which each year commemorates the anniversary of the Stonewall riots that in 1969 commenced the modern gay rights movement.

Although that movement has come a long way and achieved many victories since Stonewall, the workplace can still be an uncomfortable and unwelcoming place for many LGBTQ employees. Whether you're LGBTQ yourself or an ally, it can therefore benefit both your career and your well-being to work for a company that values diversity and inclusion.

"Luckily, companies that welcome diversity are more plentiful than ever," author Jillian Kramer writes in a blog post for the job-search website Glassdoor. To find one, she says, look for companies that have a diversity and inclusion governance structure -- that is, strategic goals around diversity and inclusion, and formal mechanisms through which to achieve them.

"A company must have a diversity and inclusion governance structure that helps guide its strategies and programs, fosters leadership and management commitment, and drives employee engagement to create and foster an inclusive culture," Tamesha Hart, talent-acquisition senior manager at Toyota North America, tells Kramer, who advises that you "check to see if the company you're interested in has such a structure, or ask about it during your interview."

Speaking of your interview, that's an ideal place to seek concrete information about a company's commitment to diversity. "Companies that value and prioritize diversity will … welcome questions about how they foster inclusion in the workplace," Kramer says. "So in your interview, don't be afraid to inquire about a company's diversity policies."

Although small and medium-sized employers are often left out of them, public rankings also can be helpful. "Lists exist to rank companies for their diversity, including Diversity Inc. Top 50 Companies for Diversity or the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index," Kramer concludes.

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