Short for Visibility and Inclusion in the Built Environment (VIBE), the group stands to enhance the firms inclusive and empowering culture in support of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and other sexual and gender minority (LGBT+) communities.
Poignant to the group’s purpose, The Diversity Council Australia’s 2018 report ‘Out at Work: From Prejudice to Pride’ revealed some startling statistics.
Did you know
Those who conceal their identity within the workplace are:
- Twice as likely to feel down at work
- 45% less likely to be satisfied in their role
Being ‘out’ at work helps drive performance.
Those who are ‘out’ are:
- 50% more likely to innovate
- 35% more likely to work highly effective in their team
- 28% more likely to provide excellent client service.
Kris Hird, Senior Project Manager and VIBE founding partner says, “Employees that feel comfortable at work and safe in their community are more likely to reach their potential and deliver greater outcomes for our clients.
“That is what the purpose of the group is about. By raising awareness and acceptance of the LGBT+ community at the same time as influencing our firm’s culture, we are better serving the interests of our people, our clients and the broader community.”
Phil Greenwood, Senior Transport Modeller and VIBE founding partner adds, “The group is open to everyone in the firm including those who identify as LGBT+ to those who just want to be involved. Through promoting diversity and inclusiveness, we are celebrating the uniqueness of people all the while, better reflecting the make-up of our society.”
Launching in conjunction with IDAHOBIT, a day which serves to raise awareness of violence, discrimination and repression of LGBT+ communities, the VIBE group is about WSP living out its Guiding Principles says Charlie Jewkes, Director for Transport in Australia.
“We don’t just value some of our people – we value ALL of our people and that means embracing and celebrating the entire gamut of diverse cultures, orientations and values of our employees and clients. By holding ourselves accountable against our Guiding Principles we are not only reflecting the interests of the community but helping our clients to achieve their goals.”
Whilst our VIBE group has only just launched, it has taken months of hard work and pioneering from many people. Our dedicated Diversity Council and members such as Kris Hird, Phil Greenwood and Leanne Whicker, as well as the group’s sponsors have been instrumental in forming the support network.
To find out more about WSP’s Diversity and Inclusion policies and initiatives, please click here.