What is pride month?
Pride month is in June, where we support and celebrate the LGBTQ community on the impact they’ve had in history. It’s an important time to recognize the history behind the years of fighting for civil rights and equality for lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgenders, and queers. President Bill Clinton declared that June would be “Gay and Lesbian Pride Month.” This time of year we should focus on the people in the LGBTQ community and our allies who continue to fight for equality for everyone.
Why is it important in the workplace?
Diversity and inclusion shouldn’t just be a few statements in the HR handbook. Your company should strive to promote a workplace that ensures that no one is discriminated against or left out because of their sexual orientation, age ethnicity, beliefs, or their marital or parental status. The LinkedIn report on global recruitment trends for 2018, states: “diversity is being invited to the party, inclusion is being asked to dance, and belonging is dancing like no one’s watching. Belonging is the feeling of psychological safety that allows employees to be their best selves at work. Even at the most diverse of companies, employees will disengage and leave if they don’t feel accepted.”
Ideas for Celebrating Pride at Work
The goal of any team building activity is to bring employees together and make them stronger as a team. Team building has many benefits for companies. It provides an opportunity for employees to get to know each other better, helps teams understand each other, and contribute to a more successful work environment. A successful team building activity improves productivity, increases employee motivation, encourages collaboration and builds trust among employees.
Before you celebrate pride at work, be sure you educate yourself on the history and the LGBTQ community. Create opportunities for you and your team to learn more about what pride is and why it is important. Educating the team will help build a more inclusive work environment that makes employees feel like they belong. Celebrating pride at work offers many benefits to companies. When companies support and embrace their team members of different backgrounds, they have a more diverse, creative, and strong company culture.
You can’t celebrate pride at work without colorful swag. Have some fun and get creative with custom socks. You could even have employees be more involved in celebrating pride at work by having them compete in a sock design contest. The winner of the contest will have their design printed on the socks and handed out to employees throughout the month. Having employees wear their rainbow socks around the office is a great way to support pride in the workplace. You could also design some custom socks for pride month, sell them and donate a percentage of profits to LGBTQ initiatives.
Change your virtual background
While you may not be able to celebrate Pride out on the streets in a parade, you can show off virtually. If your team is working still working remotely, whether you’re using Zoom or Skype, celebrate pride from home by updating your virtual background. Here are some pride inspired backgrounds:
Update your company email signatures
Consider updating your email signatures with preferred pronouns. By adding pronouns to identify yourself in email signatures, it suggests that you are an ally of the LGBTQ community. Including pronouns in email signatures has become more common and is a great step towards inclusivity. It also creates a safer space at work between employees and clients. When you add pronouns to your email signature, it signals to your recipients that you will respect their gender identity and choice of pronouns.
Volunteer or donate to LGBTQ initiatives
Give back to your community by volunteering or raising money for a charitable cause that supports the LGBTQ community. We’ve partnered with Someone Care’s Atlanta to donate a percentage of our pride-inspired custom socks and masks sales to help support their mission of eliminating all barriers to health services for all individuals who experience health disparities related to sexual health.
Evaluate your company’s policies and standards
Now is a great time to review your policies and standards to create an inclusive work environment that welcomes everyone. Identify any areas of weakness throughout the company and follow through with a plan of action to improve on them. You could invite external consultants or an established organization to host diversity and inclusion training. This will help show employees why diversity and inclusion are important and what it means to your company.
Any time is the right time to focus on diversity and inclusion in your organization. Make the effort to do something bigger than changing your company’s logo colors to a rainbow. Whether you decide to go all out with fun custom swag or update your workplace policies, no action will go unnoticed in your efforts to support equality.