Last month, something truly magical happened…
Campaign LGBTQ+ – the UK’s first peer-to-peer LGBTQ+ business network for the recruitment industry – was formally launched!
Our mission is to empower LGBTQ+ people to build successful careers in recruitment, search, and selection – regardless of their level. We’re about opening the circle for LGBTQ+ recruitment professionals in what often feels like a closed space.
There is no inclusion until belonging is felt
Over 40 people from recruitment and search came together as an LGBTQ+ community and shared their stories, experiences, and ideas on how Campaign can make recruitment businesses feel safe and inclusive for their LGBTQ+ staff.
We worked in small groups and openly shared our experiences. There were a few teary eyes, and many a jaw-drop as stories came out that were painful to hear. We made space for each other and moved through each topic with a healthy dose of laughter at the sheer ridiculousness of the prejudice and ignorance that endures in our industry. By the end of the evening, some fantastic insights and ideas were captured and how Campaign can help to empower our LGBTQ+ peers became clearer and clearer. Here’s some of the things we discussed:
“When did you come out in your recruitment career? Was it during, post-selection, or after you started?”
“How did it feel coming out in recruitment, and how do you feel about discussing coming out to external stakeholders, such as clients, candidates, or suppliers?”
“What do you think the recruitment industry can do to attract and retain more LGBTQ+ people?”
And finally, because we all need to focus on the positive, we celebrated the firms leading the way in our sector when it comes to LGBTQ+ inclusion.
Why all this matters
Most straight people in recruitment feel awkward when talking about LGBTQ+ issues at work and this is why Campaign is addressing ‘the pink elephant in the office’ straight on – something long overdue in our industry.
With the changing nature of recruitment, the industry has seen the good, the bad and the ugly. At times I have hidden who I was, which was agony, and came out without support, which was a frightening and lonely journey.
Along with Bruin’s own Ellen Mulvey, Campaign’s wonderful partners at Investigo, DVF Recruitment; Goodman Masson; Sheffield Haworth; Pod Talent Nash Squared, are creating the change we’re desperate to see and hope we are very much part of the good as allies and proud LGBTQ+ people!
These highly successful, caring, and driven recruitment friends include Lucy Morgan; Anthony Webster; Marie Cuffaro; Jake Freeman; Samuel Bailey and bring first-hand experience of LGBTQ+ challenges in our industry. But they also show that if you’re LGBTQ+, wherever you work in the sector, and at whatever level, you CAN go far, just as you are!
One of the most moving things shared from the session came from Kez Banaszak, a Project Manager at Harvey Nash. They said: “All my life I have never felt that I belonged anywhere or fitted into any category. Belonging is so very important to me as a Queer person. Being in the recruitment industry and working at Harvey Nash has made me feel like I do belong somewhere for the first time in my life. I am not judged by how I look, or how I approach my role. I am respected in my own right, and for my views on LGBTQ+ people.”
Want to join Campaign and change things for good?
Email email@example.com and sign up for news and events. Please do follow their LinkedIn page so we can grow awareness and reach together https://www.linkedin.com/company/campaign-lgbtq/
Need a listening ear?
Need a listening ear? Have something on your mind that is impacting your life as an LGBTQ+ person in recruitment, search, or selection? Email Ellen Mulvey personally at firstname.lastname@example.org and she will listen, treat everything you say in confidence, and get back to you directly.
Campaign is here so you feel you belong, have a voice that is heard, and we can work out a way for you to feel accepted, as the fabulous LGBTQ+ person that you are.
Don’t feel alone.