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Employees of Willis Towers Watson celebrate “Being You” for this year’s Pride

Employees of Willis Towers Watson have gathered together for Pride month and shared a message of acceptance and inclusivity

The LGBT+ employees along with Carl Hess, Head of Investment, Risk and Reinsurance, and Matt Furman, General Counsel–their LGBT+ inclusion network executive sponsors. “Our pride theme this year is ‘Be You at WTW’,” Hess explains in the video. “I’m committed to doing what I can to help us continue down the path of creating truly inclusive and diverse environment for us all.”

Their theme #BeyouatWTW signifies their collective and individual support for colleagues in our LGBT+ Inclusion Networks, and across the company and the wider community. Being able to bring your whole self to work is not only important for colleagues’ wellbeing but has a real impact on performance and Willis Towers Watson wants to ensure they provide an environment where everyone feels comfortable and welcome, and can be their best. Willis Towers Watson celebrates Pride every year throughout June and into July and during this time changes their iconic logo to one inspired by the rainbow flag.

In their 2018 Pride video several employees share their stories of being LGBT+ and why Pride Month is so important. “Pride month is about making yourself count,” says Judy “Change, progress happens when you make you make yourself count.” “Pride Month is an acknowledgement of myself, a reminder that I’m proud of who I am,” Jon says. Vina, a trans employee of Willis Towers Watson, explains why staying in the closet is not a healthy option for LGBT+ people. “Being transgender I had my struggles and challenges that made me realise how important it is to be accepted at work. I see work as my second home… Can you imagine having to be someone else in your own home?”

Andrew elaborates, explaining that coming out isn’t just a one-time occurrence either. “When you get a new manager, get a new job role, move to a different organisation. It’s always on your mind when you’re gay, that you’re going to have to disclose that to people you work with. Even just with small things, like what you’re doing on the weekend, who you’re sharing your life with.” Both agree that working at an LGBT+ inclusive organisation, with understanding and supportive managers, make the coming out process a lot smoother. “It wasn’t easy for me at first,” Vina says, “that’s why I’m thankful to my LGBT+ allies at Willis Towers Watson. They helped me and supported me, to not be discouraged in showing the world who I really am.”

Vina hopes to return the kindness, explaining that she’s helped other LGBT+ employees and friends at the company, and that’s thanks to the organisation’s LGBT+ Inclusion Network. “With this community, I’ve been able to help and reach out to those struggling at work, I want to be an inspiration to the LGBT+ community.”

Having an inclusion network and being able to share these stories, not just to LGBT+ people, but to straight people as well, is beneficial for the whole company. Jon explains that “it’s important for each of us to have an honest glimpse into each other’s realities. Only with this can each of us do our best work each and every day.” “I firmly believe that this inclusion network with its leaders and volunteers can encourage everyone to be proud of who they are, without prejudice,” says Whin. “I believe this leads to an environment where our colleagues – whether LGBT+ or non- LGBT+ – can work harmoniously together.” Matt Furman agrees that “for Willis Towers Watson to fully thrive all of us need to feel comfortable being our full selves at work… We’re a company of remarkable people, and together we can make a company that we all take pride in.”

If you would like to work for an organisation where you can be you, find your next role at Willis Towers Watson on myGwork.

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