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Customer and Employee Celebration Spotlight: Pride Month

By CXPA Admin posted 15 days ago

  
A group of people holding a flag

One of the 2024 initiatives of the DEI Committee is to increase awareness of the employee and customer experience around celebrations and observances that might be unfamiliar but are important to fellow members, colleagues, and customers. This month, we are spotlighting Pride Month.

The Employee and Customer Experience

Creating an inclusive environment for LGBTQIA+ employees and customers is essential. According to an article from Workplace, only 17% of LGBTQIA+ employees strongly agree that their organization cares about their well-being, compared to 27% of non-LGBTQIA+ employees. Facilitating a culture of inclusion is a leadership issue. Leaders and managers must implement inclusive practices that show all employees they are valued.

To delve deeper into how organizations can support LGBTQIA+ employees, an article from Culture Amp, "Beyond rainbow washing: Supporting LGBTQ+ at work and beyond," offers valuable insights. 

Similarly, creating exceptional customer experiences requires a year-round commitment, not just a focus during Pride Month. Organizations must intentionally demonstrate inclusivity in all customer interactions. This could be as simple as explaining why personal data is collected and how it enhances the customer experience. Bachul Koul, in an article from Retail Dive, states, “Customer inclusion is about understanding your customers for who they are — and the reality that they may not fit easily into one box regarding gender, sexuality, race, or any other aspects of their identity.”

Authentic LGBTQIA+ allyship can drive brand loyalty, making it essential not to overlook LGBTQIA+ customers when designing

 the customer experience. Amit Gupta, CCXP, a member of the CXPA Diversity Advancement Committee shares, “Understanding LGBTQIA+ communities is critical for CX leaders because inclusivity and empathy are at the heart of exceptional customer experiences. By recognizing and addressing the unique needs and challenges faced by LGBTQIA+ individuals, CX leaders can build trust, foster deeper connections, and drive brand loyalty in diverse markets”.

For more insights on elevating LGBTQIA+ customer and employee experiences, the article from Women in CX, "Beyond the Rainbow: Elevating LGBTQ+ Customer and Employee Experiences," is a recommended read.

Supporting Your Customers and Employees Year-Round

Support for LGBTQIA+ customers and employees should extend beyond June. Here are some best practices for maintaining an inclusive environment year-round:

Best Practices for Workplace Inclusion:

·       Educate yourself and encourage others to do the same.

·       Ensure your hiring practices are inclusive.

·       Be an active ally to the LGBTQ+ community.

·       Use inclusive language in both speech and writing.

·       Ensure that your organization’s non-discrimination policy includes sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression.

·       Add LGBTQ+ statements of inclusion to mission statements, service literature, and policies.

Best Practices for Customer Inclusion:
In addition to the workplace inclusion practices mentioned above, organizations can:

·       Use inclusive marketing.

·       Donate authentically to worthwhile causes such as The Human Rights Campaign, The Trevor ProjectThe Pride Fund to End Gun ViolenceThe National Center for Trans EqualityGLSENThe National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network

·       Build gender inclusivity into in-person environments, such as gender-neutral bathrooms.

·       Partner with LGBTQ+-owned businesses.

·       Maintain relationships with the LGBTQ+ community year-round.

About Pride Month

LGBTQIA+ Pride Month, often referred to simply as Pride Month, is a time dedicated to celebrating and commemorating the activism and culture of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual, and +  (LGBTQIA+) community. The origins of Pride Month trace back to a pivotal event in LGBTQIA+ history: the Stonewall Uprising. As highlighted in a People magazine article, “We celebrate in June to coincide with the catalyst of the Gay Liberation Movement that was the Stonewall Uprising. In the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, police raided a popular gay bar in N.Y.C.'s West Village, The Stonewall Inn. This was commonplace for the time, but on this particular evening, the patrons of the bar fought back, starting the Stonewall Riots, which went on for days.”

The rainbow flag, created by artist Gilbert Baker in 1978, has become the symbol of LGBTQIA+ pride. Each color in the flag has its own meaning, and over the years, different variations have been created to include additional colors. One such variation is the New Progress Pride Flag, which places an emphasis on inclusion and progression. And finally, World Pride, a series of international LGBTQIA+ pride events coordinated by InterPride, is hosted in conjunction with local LGBTQIA+ pride festivals, further highlighting the global nature of the movement.

Pride Month is a time to celebrate the progress made towards LGBTQIA+ equality and to reflect on the work that still needs to be done. Let us use this month as a reminder to continue our efforts in fostering a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion all year long.

As diversity remains a CXPA Core Value, the Diversity Advancement Committee is dedicated to fostering a culture of inclusivity and belonging, where everyone feels welcomed. You may find more resources at cxpaglobal.org/diversity. For more tips on integrating diversity, equity and inclusion into a CX ecosystem, download our free e-book. (CXPA login required)


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