Pride celebrations take place every year in major cities worldwide. Those celebrations can be huge, like colorful parades involving thousands of people. However, they can also be smaller, like pride celebrations in the workplace.
You can celebrate Pride in your workplace by organizing activities to spread awareness and the positive values associated with the event. For example, you can learn about Pride together with your team members, help an LGBTQ charity together, or even use it to champion essential policy changes. Celebrating Pride these ways could go a long way towards making your team members feel seen and appreciated.
In this guide, you’ll learn everything you need to know about celebrating Pride in your workplace. First, you’ll discover the meaning of celebrating Pride and why it matters. Then, you’ll learn 5 ways to celebrate the occasion, plus a few do’s and don’ts to remember as you do.
Let’s get started!
What Does It Mean To Celebrate Pride?
Before diving deeper into celebrating Pride in the workplace, we must zoom out just a little. That way, we can understand what it means to celebrate Pride in the first place before looking at how that works in a work environment.
For starters, Pride is a global celebration of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) community that happens in June every year. The celebration lasts throughout the entire month, often referred to as Pride Month, with parades and many other exciting activities.
Generally, Pride Month and its celebrations are all about celebrating LGBTQ culture, ensuring that it is seen and accepted while uplifting its community members and their voices.
The occasion champions positive values like solidarity and pride in the collective identity they share.
On top of that, Pride is also a call to resist discrimination and violence against the LGBTQ community worldwide, especially in places where tolerance and acceptance are still low.
Pride celebrations worldwide happen in many ways, from the largest parades to the smallest gatherings. For example, you’ll see plenty of parades from cities around the world dedicated to Pride.
Meanwhile, what you might not see are the smaller celebrations organized by businesses and their workplaces. An increasing number of organizations now include Pride in their event calendar to celebrate and appreciate their LGBTQ employees.
Still, no matter where the celebration happens or whether it’s small or large, all of them are important for the culture, its members, and their voices.
Why Should You Celebrate Pride In The Workplace?
Supporting Pride celebrations in your workplace is crucial, no matter if you’re a top-level executive, a middle manager, or a rank-and-file employee. The same is also true regardless of your sexual orientation.
Here are a few reasons why you should celebrate Pride in the workplace:
- For education: You might be surprised to find out that even fellow members of the LGBTQ community might not be fully aware of the meaning behind Pride. That’s why celebrating Pride is important to educate and spread awareness of its meaning and the values that come with it.
- For equality: Celebrating Pride is also an excellent way to show that the organization believes in equality among its employees.
- For a welcoming environment: When people are better educated on the meaning of Pride and the importance of equality, it contributes to a more welcoming environment for all. That can lead to other benefits among all employees, like feeling happier at work and being more productive team members.
- For highlighting issues: Lastly, Pride Month is an excellent time to shine a light on issues affecting LGBTQ employees. These issues can be brought to the attention of decision-makers who can implement meaningful change for the organization.
As you can see, celebrating Pride in the workplace can offer long-lasting benefits for everyone involved.
For starters, employees will feel seen, appreciated, and better understood when Pride celebrations are taken seriously. On top of that, the organization can also retain its best talents and keep them happy!
5 Ways To Celebrate Pride In The Workplace
Pride celebrations can take many different forms in the workplace. Some can be more formal and elaborate than others, but just remember that all of them still play an important role.
Here are 5 ways you can celebrate Pride in your workplace:
1. Learn About Pride Together
Earlier, you read that celebrating Pride in the workplace is important to educate and spread awareness. That’s why the first way you can celebrate pride in your office is to learn about Pride and what it means together.
The learning process doesn’t have to be dry and boring. Instead, you can make it fun with social events like:
- Inclusivity workshops: First, you can plan an inclusivity workshop aimed at celebrating Pride Month. The workshop can have fun group activities to help people discover the history behind Pride and the values that it champions.
- Lunch and Learn sessions: Another creative way to educate people in a fun social setting is called a ‘Lunch and Learn’. As the name suggests, it’s a gathering planned around lunch where people eat, drink, and learn about Pride together. The social setting makes it feel less like a training session and more like a fun group lunch.
When planning these kinds of events, remember that you don’t have to do it all by yourself. Instead, you can hire external consultants that specialize in organizing these events.
Not only can they help you plan the agenda and logistics, but they can also train you to organize the next workplace Pride celebrations yourself!
2. Help Out An LGBTQ Charity
Remember: Pride is about elevating voices within the LGBTQ community, including those who are in need of support the most. That’s why an excellent way to celebrate Pride in your workplace is to support one or more LGBTQ charities together.
These days, identifying charities in your area is easier than ever with the internet and social media. Alternatively, you could also survey your staff members and have them recommend charities or nonprofits that your company could support.
As you can imagine, there are plenty of ways to support the charities that you find.
You could start with something as simple as an office fundraiser to collect donations for your chosen charity.
Meanwhile, you could also organize a group outing to visit that charity during Pride Month, where you can contribute your time and energy.
Whichever charity your workplace chooses to support will undoubtedly be grateful for all the help that you’re offering them.
3. Decorate The Office
Naturally, your work environment should also reflect the Pride celebrations going on. So, don’t be afraid to get everyone involved in decorating the office to make the festivities even more exciting!
The best part about decorating your office for the month is that you can choose to keep things simple, or you could go all-in to transform your space.
For example, your team members can lend their time and creativity by making decorations by hand. That could be a fun team-building exercise for people to take part in during their downtime.
However, some companies take things several steps further by devoting significant resources to their Pride decorations. For instance, the organization’s Human Resources or Marketing Departments might come up with professionally-made banners and posters for Pride Month.
There’s really no right or wrong way to go about things!
4. Leverage Technology
Inclusion is a very important element of Pride, and that’s something you should never forget when planning your workplace celebrations. That’s why you must remember to include those who aren’t physically in your workplace, such as your freelancers and remote workers.
These people are important members of your team, even if they don’t occupy the same physical space as the rest of your team. Plus, you don’t want to let any of them feel left out, especially if they are members of the LGBTQ community that Pride celebrates.
Thankfully, including them in the festivities is easier than ever just by leveraging some existing technologies.
That could be as simple as setting up a Skype or Zoom call whenever you host a Pride-related celebration. At the very least, your offsite workers can tune in and be a part of what’s going on, reminding them that they’re appreciated just like everyone else.
5. Champion Policy Changes
All of the ideas you’ve seen above are fun and important. Still, it’s crucial that you remember Pride is also about long-term change.
As such, one of the most meaningful ways you can celebrate Pride is to use it to champion workplace policy changes.
For instance, LGBTQ team members can identify important workplace policies that relate to them and highlight those issues directly to upper management in the workplace.
Having this kind of direct dialogue with decision-makers and being able to influence workplace policies directly is incredibly important, and there is no better time for it to happen than Pride Month!
The Do’s And Don’ts Of Celebrating Pride In The Workplace
Navigating Pride celebrations can seem overwhelming, especially if it’s your first time organizing them in the workplace.
Don’t worry, though. Just keep these few Do’s and Don’ts in mind at all times, and you’ll do just fine!
Do: Give LGBTQ Workers A Voice
First and foremost, remember that Pride Month and its celebrations are all about your LGBTQ community members.
You can give them a voice in the workplace by gathering their input about how they’d like to be celebrated for this year’s Pride Month.
After all, they’ll likely have more Pride experience and can provide the workplace with helpful suggestions and ideas!
Don’t: Think Of It As Only A Once-A-Year Affair
Unfortunately, some workplaces participate in Pride whenever June comes around, only to forget about it all once the month passes.
Don’t let your workplace be one of them!
Instead, continue to show your appreciation to LGBTQ community members throughout the year so they see that you’re genuine in your efforts to make them feel cared for.
Do: Include All Stakeholders
Next, remember to include all of your stakeholders when celebrating Pride in the workplace. In the true spirit of inclusivity, nobody should be left out!
So, aside from your employees, remember to include others like your suppliers, clients, and even your investors!
No matter who they are or what role they play in your business, they should be made aware that you’re celebrating Pride in your workplace and invited to participate.
Who knows? You might find that they’re also celebrating Pride in unique ways, opening up opportunities for your workplace to celebrate alongside theirs.
Overall, including stakeholders in your Pride celebrations could strengthen your relationships with them in the long run.
Don’t: Copy Other Organizations’ Efforts Blindly
One critical thing to remember is that you shouldn’t celebrate Pride by copying other organizations or workplaces. Doing things that way could come off as being disingenuous to your workers and other stakeholders.
It might be tempting to copy others, especially if your workplace has never celebrated Pride before. However, there are much better ways to do it.
As you read earlier, there are 2 approaches you could take instead:
- Firstly, you could hire external consultants to help you organize your workplace Pride celebrations. They’ll help you come up with unique ideas and plan the logistics to ensure everything goes smoothly.
- Secondly, you could survey the LGBTQ community members in your workplace for ideas. That’s the best way to get original ideas from the very people you’re celebrating!
Do: Plan Things In Advance!
Lastly, remember to plan your Pride celebrations well in advance. The good thing about Pride Month is that you know exactly when it’s going to happen every year.
That means you’ll have no problems including it in your annual or even quarterly plans.
In fact, you could put together a committee to budget and plan your workplace’s Pride celebration so it goes off without a hitch!
Celebrating Pride in the workplace is an excellent way to spread positive values like inclusion in your workplace. More importantly, doing so also helps create a more welcoming environment for everyone on your team.
There is no shortage of ways to celebrate Pride, such as decorating the office and organizing educational lunches for everyone to understand what Pride is all about. So, plan ahead and be sure to include all of your stakeholders as well!