A trans-man, Liam Gent looked at the HRC Corporate Equality Index while applying for his current role at Ericsson as Master Order Planner for Supply. Having a score of 100 percent “would have made the decision much easier,” he said, as it is still legal in Texas to be fired for being LGBTQ+. However, Gent said he felt comfortable after talking with members of the LGBTQ & Allies employee resource group.
“[Gary O’Connor and Betsy Wilson, co-founders of the ERG] made sure I got invited to all the LGBTQ & Allies events,” he said. “We had lunch a couple times to check on how I was doing and how I was feeling. That was a really great way for me to start here. I felt sufficiently love-bombed.”
Ericsson’s transgender benefits and support have also been instrumental in making trans employees feel welcomed.
“The ERG has worked fairly tirelessly to develop policies around transgender individuals transitioning and working in the office and on spreading the message that this company is LGBTQ-affirming and it is safe to be LGBTQ here,” Gent said. “Setting the standard for how we act in the office and how we react in certain situations is important. Without an ERG to help guide that within diversity and inclusion, you lose the employee’s perspective.”
Because there are few trans men out at work, Gent makes a point of being honest and open about who he is and that it is OK to ask “weird” questions.
“I want people to see that we are normal people—we just didn’t grow up in the right bodies,” he said. “I think it will bring people around to learning more about the trans community and that we’re really all about just being ourselves.”