Thriving In Smaller Markets
With Pride Month in full swing, coworking businesses all over the world have shown their support of their LGBTQ members and communities. In the past couple of years, an increasing number of non-binary gender spaces have put their stamp on the industry, providing safe and professional environments for more diverse communities. We’ve covered ways to encourage diversity in coworking spaces before, but through some deep social media research, we’ve discovered a few new ways that small coworking spaces are showing their solidarity in celebration of Pride Month, the month-long cultural tribute to the history and current struggles of the LGBTQ community’s fight for equal rights in the U.S.
Here are few cool events and tactics we’ve seen coworking spaces use to show their support:
Every coworking space has a calendar of events or bulletin available to keep members informed of what’s going on in the community and a chance to participate in networking events. This month we’ve noticed that several coworking spaces (large and small) are posting their city’s local Pride parades as part of their list of events, and some are actively participating in the parades as well. If you haven’t already, this is a great way to show your support without singling out specific people in your space or forcing people to attend. Including local Pride events, whether they are in your city or neighboring towns, in your calendar, newsletter, bulletin board, etc.. is a perfect way to get people involved.
If you’d like to go a step further than just a mention on the calendar, highlighting your local Pride Center (or any local LGBTQ organization) on your website, blog, or newsletter is a great way to take a more active role in celebrating Pride Month. This will expose your members to other Pride events in the area and perhaps foster a partnership between your space and the LGBTQ community for the future. You may have coworking members who want to be involved in LGBTQ events year-round or broaden their professional network.
One of the best ways we’ve seen coworking spaces get involved in Pride Month is by hosting a round table to learn about LGBTQ history, current issues, and ask questions in a safe, judgement-free environment. This can be done over lunch or light snacks and drinks and can be scheduled at a time that’s convenient for all the members attending. This type of event is more involved, so it does require a host and careful research (hence why we encourage partnering with your local Pride Center). But if done right, this could open the doors for amazing dialogue and a unique community-building opportunity for your space. Many people, while they may be supportive and open-minded towards the LGBTQ community, may be afraid to ask questions at the risk of being misunderstood. A round table provides the perfect opportunity for interested members to better understand their LGBTQ coworkers and community in a casual way.
As you can see we’ve redone the CoworkingResources logo with the classic Pride rainbow. Many businesses are using their logos in this way and reposting them on their platforms as a gesture of solidarity with the LGBTQ community. Even though it’s temporary, it’s a really simple and easy way to express your support and let your audience know that your space is welcoming and actively pursuing diversity. It only takes a few minutes on Photoshop or whatever design program you prefer to use, and it’s as simple as adding it to your digital signage, your social media channels, or newsletter! 👀
If you’ve been struggling with how to make your space more LGBTQ-friendly, these strategies have received great feedback from people with little experience in the coworking world.
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