Companies That Support LGBT Talent Fare Better

Companies that cast a larger net into the talent pool and don't discriminate based on sexual orientation are far more successful than those who do, according to a Credit Suisse survey.

The report focused on 270 companies from a variety of sectors led by open LGBT managers and leaders. As compared to companies that outwardly discriminated or organizations without a specific non-discrimination policy, the companies that embraced LBGT employees outperformed in categories including average return on equity, cash flow return on investment and an increase in profit.

Over the past few decades, employers have increasingly articulated the business case for diversity as they have adopted LGBT-inclusive internal corporate non-discrimination policies, says Christy Mallory, senior counsel for the UCLA School of Law's Williams Institute and an expert on sexual orientation and gender identity non-discrimination protections.

"These policies have a positive impact on the bottom line," Mallory says.  "Academic research supports the business case for LGBT inclusion.  In 2013, the Williams Institute reviewed 36 academic studies examining the effects of LGBT-supportive policies, and concluded that the research supports the existence of many positive links between LGBT-supportive policies or workplace polices and outcomes that will benefit employers.  As a whole, the academic research reviewed in this study found that employees who work in LGBT-supportive climates are more likely to say that they are committed to their jobs, report better physical and health, say they are more satisfied with their jobs, and report better relationships with their co-workers."

Employee retention is low among companies that did not support an open LBGT workplace, with closeted LGBT employees saying they are 73% more likely to leave their job within a year (as compared to LGBT workers who are out and open at work) in the Credit Suisse survey. Approximately 41% of LGBT workers and 72% of LGBT executives report not being out or open at work and many LGBT employees report said they were worried that coming out at work would negatively impact upward trajectory within the company.

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