Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality was originally published on Firsthand.
As Pride month comes to a close and we release our latest Law Diversity Rankings, we thought it would be great time to take a look at the progress that’s been made in LGBT equality in the workplace. Below is a list of 10 companies in law, banking, accounting, tech, and other industries that have made great strides in promoting LGBT equality, diversity, and fairness.
Vault’s #1 Law Firm for LGBT Individuals
From an insider: “The percentage of Ropes attorneys who are LGBT far exceeds the percentage of people who are LGBT in the general population.”
This year, the law firm had a Pride month celebration with a gender pride panel discussion.
Perhaps one of the most well-known companies for having an “inclusive” culture, Google has made it a mission to focus on diversity of all kinds. In 2013, the search giant renewed its diversity initiative and shifted its focus to the more difficult task at hand—inclusivity. Through numerous programs, both internal and external, Google’s diversity numbers have risen throughout the years, and retention has improved. Today, over 65 percent of employees have participated in unbiasing trainings, and all new Googlers and managers participate. Furthermore, the company has even put unbiasing into its employees’ hands—now all Googlers can personally create a training for their team.
Vault’s #1 Banking Firm for LGBT Individuals
From an insider: “Diversity is about more than formal policies; it’s about the culture of the employees and how people act under tough situations. Here’s a revealing example that I think highlights the firm’s commitment. I was at a client dinner where the senior relationship manager thought he had overheard a homophobic comment from a key client. After the dinner, he had rushed over to check what had actually been said, whether I thought it was offensive to me (as a gay man), and offered to discuss with the client and even end the relationship.”
Vault’s #2 Law Firm for LGBT Individuals
From an insider: “The firm is exceptional in supporting women, minorities, and LGBT individuals. There are affinity groups with generous budgets for women attorneys, minority attorneys, and LGBT attorneys, and the firm promotes the hiring of diverse candidates.”
Vault’s #1 Accounting Firm for LGBT Individuals
From an insider: “Culture is taken very seriously here and that includes maintaining a culture of respect. I am a queer woman and feel completely supported in being myself here. There was an incident with an outside trainer being culturally inappropriate toward immigrants and women, and my firm handled it swiftly and professionally. I was really impressed by that.”
Vault’s #1 Consulting Firm for Diversity
From an insider: “Diversity is one of BCG’s recruiting goals. When looking for candidates, BCG encourages us to be mindful and attract people with diverse backgrounds, ethnicity, gender, etc.”
Nike made a splash back in 2012 when it launched its Pride month collection that features specialty shoes and clothing called “BETRUE’. Since then, the grassroots program has raised over $2.5 million for LGBTQ causes in the US. This year, Nike partnered with athlete superstars LeBron James, Serena Williams, Kevin Durant, Michael B. Jordan, and more to create a video advocating for LGBT equality, with a featured song by Alicia Keys.
Over the years, Starbucks has done numerous things to raise LGBT awareness, including publicly applauding the Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage equality, turning hundreds of Starbucks locations into LGBT safe spaces, and partnering with Lady Gaga and her Born This Way Foundation to create drink specials during Pride month. Since creating its first LGBT affinity group in 1996, the company has promoted equality in its stores and communities throughout the world.
Vault’s #3 Law Firm for LGBT Individuals
From an insider: “As an LGBT lawyer, I can say that I felt like I had a family at OMM from day one, and the firm has been incredibly supportive of LGBT-causes. The day after the Orlando shooting, our firm put up a large rainbow flag in our front lobby, and our firm engages in tons of LGBT-related pro bono work. We also have a large number of LGBT partners, and our LGBT affinity group is very active.”
Most recently, the company that’s single-handedly changed the way people view rental accommodations has created another clause in its pledge—to eliminate any discrimination by its hosts. The company has also publicly stood for same sex marriage, particularly in Australia, where same sex marriage is not yet legal and where Airbnb has released this type of ad.