According to a study by VMLR, workplace belonging leads to a 56 percent increase in job performance. At BARR Advisory, we value belonging, which is why Pride is more than a month-long holiday to our associates. It’s a celebration of diverse identities and an opportunity to reflect on the ways in which we can best support our communities throughout the year.
Let’s take a look at what Pride means to senior consultants in BARR’s Cyber Risk Advisory practice, Daniel Flores Herrera and Barbara Donatien, and how BARR contributes to LGBTQ+ causes in the month of June and beyond.
“In 2015, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of performing and recognizing same-sex marriage throughout the United States. While this only became a reality less than 10 years ago, all people across the US now have the opportunity to be with the person they love,” said Flores Herrera. “This milestone is a very celebratory matter during Pride month, because it also took place in June.”
To Donatien, Pride is a time to reflect on the importance of representation and visibility.
“In the past, people identifying as LGBTQ+ weren’t represented in the workplace. Thanks to advocates who fought and continue to fight for equal rights, representation has expanded to all areas of an organization, including those who have a seat at the table.”
The BARR Belong Foundation
“When addressing issues of diversity in the workplace, it’s important to go beyond policies and handbooks. There should be actual, meaningful contributions. BARR takes a clear stance when external conflicts regarding diversity arise and shares ways to get involved,” said Flores Herrera.
With LGBTQ+ as an impact area for community outreach, the BARR Belong Foundation provides opportunities for associates to engage in programs that are meaningful to them throughout the year.
Here are a few programs in which the BARR Belong Foundation empowers associates to create stronger, safer, and more secure communities:
- BARR’s Annual Day of Giving: In October, we close our doors for one day and give back to our communities through volunteerism.
- BARR’s Matching Gift Program: For every dollar our associates give to an eligible nonprofit, BARR gives a dollar as well, matching up to $500 annually per associate to any 501(c)(3) of their choice. Additionally, each new associate receives a $25 giving card for a charity of their choice.
- Volunteerism Program: Throughout the year, we encourage associates to share causes that matter to them, along with opportunities to give back. BARR also offers associates two days each year to use specifically for volunteer opportunities important to them.
During Pride month, BARR’s People & Culture team boosts events and resources that promote genuine connection between associates, like a Pride-themed happy hour and information about allyship. This year, BARR shared the “5 Ally Actions” Newsletter with associates, which provides details on local Pride events and ways to become a better LGBTQ+ ally.
“Associates are encouraged to swap ideas on books and other resources throughout the year,” said Donatien. “Overall, the culture at BARR promotes transparency, where people feel free and open to talk about issues of diversity.”
Celebrating Pride in June and Beyond
“At BARR, we are not limited to one month of Pride celebration; it’s an ongoing effort,” said Flores Herrera. “Inclusivity is an everyday practice among associates. Everybody contributes. It’s ingrained in our core values as opposed to a one-off event.”
Herrera provided a few examples of ways to get involved and celebrate Pride: “donate to your organization of choice, such as causes that are fighting to protect queer and transgender rights. Voting is also a way to make a big impact and support LGBT rights. Volunteer at your local community center. Support your local drag queens.”
Donatien added, “Attending parades and supporting local vendors is a great way to celebrate Pride. It’s also very impactful to donate to causes that contribute to the LGBTQ+ community, like organizations who support transgender rights, respond to homelessness, and more.”
“Beyond Pride month, I believe it’s important to advocate or lend a listening ear for someone who wants to talk about these issues. It’s imperative to make sure everyone feels heard and represented, and simply listening to others’ stories can go a long way,” said Donatien.