Can you name a woman at the top of her field? We’ll give you a few seconds. While you think, here’s some Wonder Woman.
Got one in your mind? Good. Here’s just a few guesses on where your brain wandered. Maybe you went political and thought of Hillary Clinton or Angela Merkel. Perhaps your mind went to the business world and thought of Mary Barra or Indra Nooyi – the CEOs of GM and PepsiCo, respectively. Maybe you even thought about music, and Katy Perry or Beyoncé came to mind. These women are admirable and accomplished, breaking glass ceilings whenever they face them. In addition to all being women, they have something else in common: they’re all straight (at least as far as we know).
Lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LBTQ) women are woefully underrepresented in business. Actually, that’s not entirely true. I have no doubt that LBTQ women are well-represented; they’re just not out at work. That’s understandable given the well-established evidence that women and LGBTQ people both face potential discrimination in the workplace. The data on LGBTQ people of color and employment is even more stark. But none of this will change unless we work together, as a community, to make sure that people can be out at work. Non-discrimination protection is key, but so is creating a strong network of LBTQ women to lean on for support, guidance, and development on how to be out at work. That’s where the Out Women in Business (OWIB) Conference comes in.
On April 1, we’ll meet in New York at OWIB to create a more united and visible community of out women in different industries. Together, we can form a strong, visible network of professionals that will inspire future generations of LBTQ women. Come and learn from some incredible speakers as they share their experiences of being out at work. Let’s change those statistics about LBTQ women and unemployment. Let’s work as a community to be more out, more present at work. Let’s turn the “double glass ceiling” narrative on its head. Register here for OWIB and build the world we want to live and work in.