How Employee Engagement Can Foster Workplace Inclusion
On National Coming Out Day, three Glint customers share how they’re making sure their LGBTQ employees feel included at work.
We know that when employees are engaged, they can do their best, and be their best, at work. But what if an employee doesn’t feel welcome or safe in their workplace? Organizations are increasingly using employee engagement surveys to gather feedback on what an inclusive workplace means to their people, and what actions they can take to create a sense of belonging where all employees can thrive. In fact, we have found that a strong sense of belonging is one of the top drivers of employment engagement.
Glint customers A.T. Kearney, Hasbro, and PTC are just three examples of how organizations are helping their lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LBGTQ) employees do their best and be their best at work.
Improving allyship opportunities through feedback
A.T. Kearney, a global management consulting firm, knows that diverse teams operating in inclusive environments produce the best results for their clients. An integral part of its business strategy hinges on attracting and retaining a highly diverse employee population.
For 10 years running, A.T. Kearney has received the highest score possible on the Corporate Equality Index, a report created by the advocacy organization the Human Rights Campaign that gauges businesses’ level of LGBTQ workplace inclusion. This is due in large part to the company’s ally program.
The ally program was an outgrowth of employee feedback. For the last two years, A.T. Kearney has conducted its “Proud Pulse” survey through Glint to understand the state of its LGBTQ employees and how it could create the most inclusive environment possible. The firm encouraged every employee to complete the Proud Pulse survey, serving up slightly different questions for self-identified LGBTQ employees vs. non-LGBTQ employees. These pulses unearthed that many employees wanted to do more to support LGBTQ employees and become allies but didn’t know how to go about it.
As a result of these insights, A.T. Kearney recently launched its LGBTQ Ally Training and Pledge, asking those who want to become an ally to first complete a module on what allyship means. This online program provides an opportunity for employees to explore topics like:
- What does it mean to be an ally?
- LGBTQ history
- Focusing on the “TQ:” Transgender and Gender Non-Conforming
- LGBTQ rights and experiences in culturally restrictive environments
By dedicating time and resources to uncovering employees’ feelings about LGBTQ policies and taking effective action, A.T. Kearney has empowered and educated LGBTQ supporters to be more active and do more to create an inclusive environment every day.
Creating a ‘PRIDE’-ful foundation
Hasbro is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive culture that helps employees know they are valued, respected and empowered to bring their best ideas forward. One of the world’s most successful toy companies, Hasbro believes that varied perspectives generate the best ideas, which, in turn, helps them reflect diversity, inclusion and belonging across their brands and play experiences.
In order to make an inclusive culture a bedrock of its organization, Hasbro has created a PRIDE employee network. The group is a visible, accessible resource for LGBTQ–identified employees and allies, and it provides LGBTQ–focused networking as well as educational and social opportunities for the Hasbro community.
HR leaders work closely with the PRIDE network on employee feedback, consulting the group frequently on the company’s overall efforts and policies. One such policy Hasbro recently added is a gender confirmation-surgery benefit to support transgender employees. The policy aligns with the company’s larger people-centric mission to ensure all employees feel comfortable in the workplace and have the opportunity to reach their potential. Additionally, in consultation with the PRIDE network, Hasbro developed transgender-transitioning guidelines for employees who are or may be transgender, their co-workers, managers, and HR partners.
‘Leader-Led and Grassroots-Fed’
Over the past few years, the corporate strategic goals at PTC, a computer software and services company, have centered around a commitment to driving cultural transformation. One focus area has been fostering an inclusive culture that values employees, and inspires innovation and customer success.
PTC uses employee feedback, in the form of data and comments, to both measure and inform its inclusion efforts. The company’s inclusion measure includes survey items on employee engagement, authenticity, and equal opportunity.
PTC has established many resources for the LGBTQ community, such as:
- Global discrimination and harassment policies that protect all employees, including all gender identities
- Medical benefits that cover gender-confirmation surgery
- Hormonal therapy
Ultimately, PTC believes that inclusion needs to be “leader-led and grassroots-fed,” meaning that it’s critical that all levels of the organization are involved and committed. In order to show this commitment to the wider community, PTC also sponsors onsite events, and attends and sponsors external LGBTQ events.
These are just a few ways organizations are using employee feedback to create workplaces where employees feel a sense of belonging. (Want to read another example? Here’s how Glint customer Sky is creating an inclusive environment.) The theme, as you can see, is that organizations are listening to their employees, and then acting on what their employees tell them.
Interested in learning how Glint can help you foster an inclusive workplace? Learn more here.