UNDERSTAND THE TERMINOLOGY
Terminology in this area can be complex, evolving, and at times contentious. Understand the terminology, be mindful of labels, and listen for cues particularly on how someone may prefer to identify.
UNDERSTAND THE CHALLENGES
Challenges are still faced by LGBTI individuals when it comes to recruitment. In particular, gender diverse individuals. Create a safe space to ask and answer questions if the person has openly identified themselves as a person within the LGBTI community.
BE VISIBLY INCLUSIVE
Not everybody will identify within the recruitment process but they may be actively listening for cues of inclusivity.
Visible cues such as an ALLY coasters or brochures on your diversity initiatives including LGBTI can help put a person at ease.
TALK ABOUT DIVERSITY INITIATIVES (INCLUDING LGBTI)
Talking about all of your diversity initiatives serves two purposes. It lets diverse individuals know that they are talking to an employer that values diversity but it also lets those that may be uncomfortable with some aspects of diversity know what your values are.
TALK ABOUT CULTURE, RESPECT, INCLUSION
This serves to not only represent your organisation as an inclusive employer but also clearly states what your expectations are in terms of inclusive behaviour and respect for all individuals.
KNOW THE TEAM THAT YOU ARE PLACING OPENLY OUT LGBTI INDIVIDUALS WITHIN
While the organisation itself may be inclusive, the reality is there are often individuals who are not receptive. Be mindful of the teams that you are placing LGBTI individuals within. If you know that there is likely to be some conflict within that team due to the diversity of the individual coming into it, be prepared to address the expectations, your organisational values and and acceptable/non-acceptable behaviour prior to placing the person within that team.
Because an individual has come out to you within the interview process, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they immediately wish to be out to their new manager or team. This may take time. It is important to respect confidentialities.
Never assume that someone belongs (or doesn’t belong) to the LGBTI community because of the way they look.
Likewise never assume that someone will be as comfortable working with members of the LGBTI community as you are. This is why these issues are so critical to address within the interview process.