Did you know acceptance is essential for you to feel motivated and perform productively at your work? June is now known as LGBT Pride Month, and it’s a call for tolerance and acceptance; it’s a celebration of identity. Pride is about making all community members – like your teamwork, your family, or your group of friends – feel welcomed and comfortable regardless of their personal preferences. Inevitably, your workspace is one of the most influential communities you have. So, how can you celebrate Pride month at work?
Pride celebrations offer a chance to raise awareness between employees in the workplace, especially those supporters of the LGBTQIA+ community. It represents the acknowledgment of accomplishments through history and the individuals that fought for it, who might be your brother, your friend, your boss, your teammate, or your direct report.
June is all about bringing awareness to Pride, diversity, and inclusion, and remote work shouldn’t stop you from spreading these ideas in your work environment. Pride is not limited to the physical space of an office; it goes beyond any screen and Zoom call. And although today is the last day of June, we want to remind you that Pride should be celebrated not only during this month but during the 365 days of the year.
What is Pride Month?
All around the world, in June, people celebrate the LGBTQ+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer) Pride Month to commemorate a breaking point in queer history: the Stonewall Riots. This event lasted six days in Manhattan in 1969 as police clashed with the historic gay liberation movement and fight for LGBTQ rights that followed.
Some time ago, people expanded the LGBTQ acronym to LGBTQIA+ (intersexual and asexual), and now almost everyone refers to it this way. But there are many variations and categories within this community, and that’s not what June celebrates. Instead, Pride Month celebrates authentic identity and a call to action to recognize pressing issues about equality above else.
After Stonewall Riots, Pride became all about commemoration through extraordinary events and attracted millions of participants every year as queer communities and allies honor the LGBTQIA+ identity through parades, workshops, parties, picnics, lectures, concerts, and more. Nowadays, there are organizations and groups around the world that contribute to raising awareness in this community. When you are more aware, you seek out resources to become more educated and active.
How to Celebrate Pride Month In a Remote Workplace
1. It All Start with Education
When was the first time Pride Month was celebrated? Who were the protagonists of the event?
Pride is just as much about education as a celebration. And the truth is, you cannot celebrate something you don’t know. As we mentioned above, Pride is about celebrating diversity and equity, but this celebration is not only about going to a parade dressed in bright colors. It’s also about acknowledging that everyone deserves the same rights and the same respect. It doesn’t matter their sexual orientation, personal preferences, or gender; we are all equal.
Get together with your colleagues and organize some educational opportunities for your company or team. One of the most meaningful ways to recognize Pride Month is by creating virtual events for queer history lessons. Together with your team, you could invite a speaker to give a Zoom lecture, virtually visit a museum with a guide, or take an online tour of a historically significant site to watch documentaries and old photos.
For centuries, members of the LGBTQIA+ community hid in the shadows, feeling minimized and oppressed. Parades, parties, and declarations of June 1969 are about reclaiming the past and fighting for the future. What could be better than learning more about this fantastic month?
Plus, you could honor them by including the topics you’ve learned in the content you create at work, like blog posts, social media posts, or articles!
2. Rewards Platform for LGBTQIA+ Causes
Sometimes your engagement at work might be driven by the consequences, for example, the rewards platform. And the truth is, you’ll feel more committed to those causes that represent who you are because when you feel closely aligned with your beliefs and values, work rewards have a more significant impact on your engagement.
If your company’s reward platform contributes to charities, there are several ways you can celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community through them. Their organizations need as much contribution as any other. So for this month, you could change your rewards platform directions and give your company’s donations to one of these. You can either contribute with your team to make one large donation or match individual employee contributions up to a specific amount.
Here are some suggested charities:
- Gay Men’s Health Crises
- Los Angeles LGBT Center
- Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center
- The Trevor Project
You can also commemorate this month by prioritizing queer-run businesses. You can order food from a queer-owned restaurant, buy some product from independent LGBTQIA+ entrepreneurs, or book a queer artist for an online performance.
If your employee rewards catalog doesn’t already offer a way for employees to contribute to charities, now’s the time to get started!
Learn more: 5 Ways to Show Gratitude in the Remote Workplace
3. New Email Signatures
You want to celebrate Pride Month, but have no idea where to start? ? Maybe your colleague suggested you post a photo on Instagram, but deep inside, you know you’re not “that kind of person.”
If you’re more of an introvert, one of the easiest and least expensive ways to celebrate Pride Month at remote work is through your email signature. You can add many designs or emojis to your email signature that will help everyone know you’re celebrating the cause. Or you could add to all emails something like: “I’m an ally of the LGBTQIA+ community and a member of [your company].”
You can also send a special email to all your colleagues. You can include crucial quotes in queer history, important figures of the community, historical facts, and links to LGBTQIA+ fundraisers. And to make the message more interactive, you can encourage your coworkers to answer.
4. Pride Month Virtual Background
Nowadays, we all use virtual platforms for video calls. Whether it’s for work, class, or Virtual Yoga lessons, we all need to connect with other people through these platforms. So, what better way to celebrate this month through your virtual background?
During June, you can select a couple of pride backgrounds you like and replace your standard backdrop with a colorful tribute to the LGBTQIA+ community.
Some ideas for your searches are:
- Rainbow flag
- LGBTQIA+ icons
- Pride parade
- Your company’s logo turned into pride colors
- LGBTQIA+ important event or quote
Here you can access a great collection, but you can also create your own masterpiece!
5. Raise Awareness on Social Media
What can be more engaging in social media than celebrating a special occasion through an Instagram post or campaign?
Social media is a fantastic tool to raise awareness. This month, every post you make on your company’s social media accounts could include a pride frame or filter. Therefore, the audience would know that you’re celebrating Pride Month. You can also share the rainbow flag, graphic, or logo to show your community. Or even search for important hashtags and quotes to add in the posts.
If your company is allied with some LGBTQIA+ organization, you can take this event as an excuse to share all the actions and initiatives you had together. Spreading resources and awareness of your allyship will always be a great way to celebrate them.
6. Fun Pride Remote Games
Have you ever played a virtual game with your remote team? If you haven’t, June is the perfect month to do it!
You could start with Bingo. In case you never tried this game virtually, here’s how you should do it. You could invite a drag queen to host your bingo night! You send participants Bingo cards and then separate the group into breakout rooms, encouraging teammates to chat. Just be sure that the squares on the cards are randomized so that no player wins at once!
To win, a player must keep five boxes in a row, column, or diagonal. Participants mark the boxes with the name of coworkers who fit in the description. This bingo will give you the glam, excitement, and good entertainment with your team.
If you’re not much of a Bingo fan, you can try playing Pride Month Trivia. It’s a 60 minute, interactive virtual team-building event. A host guides competitors in a series of knowledge quizzes and mini-games celebrating LGBTQIA+ history and pop culture events. Participants would make puns and wager bets, working together to rack up points and win ultimate bragging rights.
Pride Month Trivia is challenging and fun, and it’ll allow you and your remote colleagues to know each other more through friendly competition.
7. Pride Virtual Events
Virtual happy hours are one of the best remote Pride social events. You’ll have a nice margarita with your colleagues and celebrate Pride Month as you would do after work at the office. It will be like a night out!
All attendees can wear whatever makes them feel comfortable and confident and join or leave the party as their schedule allows. You could talk about Pride-related topics, or you could just enjoy yourself telling funny stories related to this celebration.
If you’re not much of a talkative, there are several excellent films and tv shows that celebrate the queer experience, and you can watch them together with your team while you have a drink.
First, decide on what you’ll be watching. Then, send out invitations to a Zoom call, and once all participants enter, use a program like Watch2Gether to synchronize the movie. Remember all participants will need to have streaming accounts on the preferred platform.
Watching suggestions for the special night:
- Priscilla Queen of the Desert
- Paris is Burning
- Imagine You and Me
- The Birdcage
8. Let’s Have Some Parades and Cabarets
Didn’t you ever feel like showing your unique talent to your team at work but felt embarrassed? Well, remote parades and cabarets are the perfect occasions for you to do it!
Parades are the most famous Pride event. Circumstances may not allow actual parades, but together with your team, you could recreate the experience online. Choose the platform you prefer to connect all the audience (your company or teammates) and record the video conference to watch it later with your team. It’ll be a memorable event for the company. Get ready to start walking around the house!
Remote cabarets are also a fantastic virtual way to celebrate Pride Month. During these gatherings, you’ll see unique personalities you’ve never met before in your company. They are all about expression, honesty, and showing who you are, and that’s what we celebrate in June!
You’ll first have to put out a call for performers. Then, create a show order with the sign-ups you’ve received. Once everything is in order, send the invitations to the whole company, and when the evening arrives, meet up on video conference software and start the show. Make sure you help your colleagues feel supported!
Pride Month Tips for Work
Say NO To Stereotypes
Have you ever felt overlooked in the wrong way? A simple face or gesture can change everything.
Unfortunately, some people still fall into stereotypes, and the queer culture has tropes and cliches like any other culture. As a Pride promoter, you should take into consideration the LGBTQIA+ community is diverse and encourage your team to act the same way.
Avoid making assumptions or generalizations that might offend a colleague or alienate someone.
Millions of companies celebrate this month, but few people criticize companies who promote this month for the audience without committing to meaningful change. So, try to align the company’s spirit for the occasion; it’s not all about posting rainbow flags on its Instagram account. Ensure that the culture and values you defend are inclusive with LGBTQIA+ staff, like providing equal benefits to same-sex couples and encouraging self-expression.
Everyone Invited Doesn’t Mean Everyone Attending
Celebrating Pride Month is a choice, and all employees should have it. Love, life, and sexuality are personal matters. Some colleagues – or even yourself – may prefer to keep their private life private, and you should respect that.
Companies should invite every employee to enjoy them, but not everyone must go. Your teammates might come from different cultural backgrounds or carry beliefs or conflicts with Pride you may not know. So avoid those mandatory comments on your colleagues about their assistance to the Pride events.
Respect all team member’s feelings and beliefs. Just focus on celebrating Pride with togetherness and inclusion!
Allyship and Inclusivity
In June, three values should arise more than ever: togetherness, tolerance, and acceptance.
Pride Month isn’t only about a queer holiday. LGBTQIA+ celebrants often welcome straight allies to participate in the festivities because this battle against homophobia and equality is a shared responsibility. That’s what you’re celebrating!
Community and inclusion must become the main aims in Pride Month. More employees will join these fun events, and they’ll feel more comfortable and less personal. Plus, those who don’t enjoy drawing attention to their gender orientation can still enjoy the virtual celebrations.
It’s Time to Celebrate Pride Remotely!
Pride plays an influential role in diversity and inclusion. Diversity and inclusivity will arrive at your workplace when you and your teammates acknowledge everyones’ unique traits and characteristics. Pride awareness helps raise a more diverse culture, in this case, enabling work environments to know employees’ true selves and identities.
Discrimination at work, harassment in their community, or limited rights in society are some situations members of the LGBTQIA+ community have experienced. But, virtual Pride celebrations will allow all employees to be themselves. And luckily, Pride activities recognize these employees’ harrowing experiences in their lives, within and outside work teams.
Celebrating Pride in the workplace will raise awareness and recognition of Pride in every team member and provide a safe and encouraging space for everyone. Feeling accepted makes you perform better at work and become motivated at what you do. So, why would you miss the chance to raise your and your team’s potential at its best?