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4 Best Practices for Engaging With the LGBTQ+ community

NH Business Review

Ads for Sanborn Diversity Training Solutions, LLC in Derry, NH

Insights: Diversity 4 best practices for engaging with the LGBTQ+ community By: Rebecca Sanborn, JD Now more than ever, it’s simply good business for organizations to be culturally competent about the LGBTQ+ community. To start you on your journey, here are the four most important, foundational best practices for interacting with members of the LGBTQ+ community, as clients, employees and other stakeholders. 1. Never make assumptions about someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity or relationship status. For example, due to social conditioning, people assume that others they meet are straight, unless told otherwise. These internal assumptions are largely unconscious. However, vocalizing those assumptions has the potential to create awkward or hurtful situations. Make it your practice to never assume. 2. Use gender-neutral, inclusive terms whenever possible. Some people identify as nonbinary: not fitting strictly into a box of male or female, but rather knowing themselves as being somewhere along the spectrum of gender identity. The use of gendered language, such as “ladies and gentlemen,” potentially leaves nonbinary folks out in the cold. In that instance, try saying “friends and colleagues” instead. 3. Respect pronouns and share your own whenever possible. By using the pronouns that a person uses, you are honoring the core of their identity and showing that you respect their innate human right to self-identification. This is especially important for transgender people, who may have shifted to using different pronouns during the course of transitioning, and for nonbinary folks, who often use more expansive pronouns than just “he” or “she.” At the same time, you can help normalize the process of sharing pronouns by sharing your own, such as in email signatures or on Zoom titles. 4. Ensure that you are teachable and allow yourself to be educated with an open mind. Learning how to better and more sensitively engage with the LGBTQ+ community is just like learning any other new skill. It takes time, energy and, yes, making a few mistakes along the way. But increasingly, today’s organizations are finding that, as with other diversity practices, the journey is well worth the effort. Special Advertising Section “It’s simply good business to be culturally competent about the LGBTQ+ community.” 603-434-0068

Jun 03, 2022. Sanborn Diversity Training Solutions, LLC Training Ads from NH Business Review

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