Inclusion isn’t about hiring diverse people and then sitting back and doing nothing to ensure they all feel safe and respected in the workplace. CGI LGBTQ+ Network member, Kierran Spiers, discusses the active role CGI plays in encouraging a sense of belonging for everybody.
Why I feel so comfortable and safe being me at CGI
CGI makes me feel included and supported. I’m not referring to one specific time - it’s more of a consistent feeling that you get here because the culture is so open and supportive of everyone, whoever they are.
Everyone is welcomed. Everyone gets the help they need based on their individual requirements. During my eight years here, it’s been fantastic witnessing the efforts made to ensure all members feel safe and respected in our workplace. In fact, since joining CGI’s LGBTQ+ Network, I have never felt so much support. I’ve definitely made friends that I would not have if I hadn’t felt confident, supported and valued here.
We’ve built a community for our LGBTQ+ members where we talk about our experiences, offer advice, and share our passions and hobbies outside work (which for me involves running, reading and bingeing on a few TV series). It’s reassuring to feel so comfortable bringing my whole self to work every day.
Inclusion involves action, not words
Many places, these days, put a huge emphasis on hiring diverse teams. That doesn’t necessarily lead to an inclusive culture. True inclusion is the active engagement and involvement with diverse populations to ensure that everyone is valued and has their voice heard.
It's not just about the policies. It’s about providing training for employees and managers and creating an appropriate environment.
For example, for the LGBTQ+ community at CGI, we see LGBTQ+ people represented at all levels of the company, including senior management and leadership, and we feel a sense of genuine belonging. We see our company advocating for LGBTQ+ issues in society, and we know we are in a place that is authentic and represents its inclusive values.
At the end of the day, being inclusive is about creating a safe space, in which everyone is free to express themselves and where they feel like they belong. This is not just about words. This is not just about passive, surface-level diversity that doesn’t actually translate into a truly inclusive environment.
If you’d like to discover more, head to the CGI Diversity, equity and inclusion page.