Inclusive workspaces are essential to a company because they can contribute to increased feelings of belonging, greater trust, and lower turnover. These environments are also critical as they will make LGBTQ employees feel comfortable enough to bring their whole selves to work. If you want to create a welcoming environment for your employees successfully, read on for tips and tools on creating this type of space.

How To Create an Inclusive Work Space for LGBTQ Employees

  1. Review Your Company Policies
    The first step towards creating a welcoming environment for LGBTQ staff is to review and update your company’s non-discrimination policies, which will be necessary, especially when new employees join your team. These policies should state that workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity is not tolerated. You can also include a policy to ensure that company benefits are not contingent on employees’ marital status or family planning choices. It will make it clear that an employee’s sexuality does not affect their access to benefits.
  2. Embrace The Community
    One way to create a space where LGBTQ employees feel more comfortable is to make it known that this is a place not only for heterosexuals but also for their community. You can dedicate a group or space in your office where employees can express themselves through art and music. You can also set up a booth at events that celebrate their rights, such as Pride festivals or National Coming Out Day celebrations.
  3. Make The Workplace Gender-Neutral
    Another way to create an inclusive work environment is by making neutrally-themed spaces. If your workplace currently has gender-specific bathrooms or unisex spaces, consider changing the signs on these rooms to ‘restrooms’ or family restrooms. Make sure any company policies or benefits that reference gender are also removed, as this is another way for employees to feel safe and comfortable at work.
  4. Speak Out Against Discriminatory Actions
    Even if you have inclusive policies in place, it’s still important to speak out against homophobic and transphobic comments made by other co-workers, clients, and even prospective employees. Your disapproval will make it clear that these discriminatory actions are not tolerated in your workplace.
  5. Provide On-Going Sensitivity Training.
    Create an inclusive workplace for your LGBTQ staff by providing relevant training. Not only will this help you to commit to your policies, but it will also familiarize you with the issues faced by their community.
  6. Regular Policy Updates
    The last step towards creating an inclusive work environment for your LGBTQ staff is updating your policies throughout the year to reflect new laws and societal changes. Doing so can demonstrate that you are willing and ready to adapt to any changes in culture or legislation, as well as make sure that your workplace reflects diversity as far as possible.

Creating an inclusive environment isn’t just a matter of changing your policies. It’s also a matter of changing your company culture to be all-inclusive. When it comes to helping LGBTQ people feel more included, it comes down to how you treat everyone at work every day. Not only should you speak out against discrimination in your company, but you should also work to make every employee feel like they’re part of the team.

Need support and more ideas on how your company can be more inclusive of your LGBTQ employees? Contact us at Klein HR Solutions 305-775-5640 or email: tammy@kleinhrsolutions.com.