Before applying to a company for an open position, it is important for you to do your homework and research the specifics about the organization. You research the background, past and ongoing projects, employees, and whatever else you think is important to know. However, if you identify as LGBTQIA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, intersex, and asexual/ally), you’ve got a few more items that should be considered more closely in your homework like company culture, local culture, community, and diversity.
Great places to look to gather information that might help determine the company’s perspective in relation to hiring and their level of comfort in the workplace include:
- DiversityInc’s Top 50
- Trade magazines
- Company websites
- LinkedIn Groups for LGBTQIA
Did you know that in many states, employers can legally discriminate in hiring based on sexual orientation? This map by the ACLU provides a great state-by-state breakdown of the non-discrimination laws.
We look at the city around us and see it as a mecca of diversity, but you need to realize that not everywhere you go will be like this, so be aware of what local culture you might be entering if you plan to job search outside of NYC. Also, it is important to note that despite the diversity of a city, you cannot predict the personal beliefs of a potential employer. Maybe you know someone who worked there, interviewed there—ask them what vibes they got.
In regards to the resume, some students wonder if they should disclose LGBTQIA awards or memberships. This is entirely up to you and your comfort level. You should still do your homework on the company to see if this might be information that could help you, but make sure you are comfortable using it as a talking point. Remember, you should be prepared to talk about anything that you put on your resume.
We want you to be happy where you work and love what you do. Being prepared and aware helps you to achieve this goal.
Editor’s Note: This site was hacked and the original content lost in 2014. This article, originally published in 2014, was recovered form a draft version and updated. #lost&found