Promote inclusivity by using the right pronoun!

June 28, 2021

At Englobe, we’re proud to call ourselves a family. To us, this means respecting, encouraging, and celebrating one another, no matter our differences.    

Like other companies and citizens, we’re learning as we go. We believe it’s important to take all the right steps and measures to make sure everyone in our Englobe family feels welcomed, loved, respected, and confident.   

We already use gender pronouns like “he” or “she” in our day-to-day work. But as generations evolve, we’ve come to realize that not everyone relates to these pronouns in the same way.    

The new pronouns and how they’re used   

To bridge this gap, new pronouns have been introduced, and gender identity has been assigned to them. Gender identity can be defined as the emotional and psychological self-understanding of the gender that person was assigned at birth, usually by one or both parents.    

Here’s a brief breakdown on these pronouns:   

  • She/her/hers: female/feminine 
  • He/him/his: male/masculine 
  • They/them/theirs: these pronouns can be used in the singular now. In fact, they was voted as the Word of the Year in 2015 by the American Dialect Society (ADS). 
  • Ze/hir: this pronoun is pronounced zee and can also be spelled zie or xe. It replaces the more common pronouns she/he/they. Hir is pronounced here and replaces her/hers/him/his/they/theirs. 
  • No pronouns: Some people also opt to eliminate pronouns entirely, and simply use their names.    

Why pronouns matter   

Using a person’s preferred pronouns is a way of showing your respect for that person’s gender identity. Addressing someone using the wrong pronouns can make them feel disrespected, invalidated, unseen, dismissed, or alienated (and often all of the above.)   

Using someone’s correct personal pronouns is a way to show your respect for that person, which helps create an inclusive environment.   

Best practices   

You won’t always be able to discern someone’s pronouns visually. Asking and then correctly using someone’s pronouns is one of the most basic ways you can show your respect for that person’s gender identity. 

If you happen to address someone using the wrong pronoun, the best thing to do is to correct yourself right away. Simply say something like “Sorry! I meant (insert pronoun).” If you realize your mistake after the fact, apologize in private and move on.   

Don’t dwell on how badly you feel about this mistake, or how difficult it is for you to make the right pronoun choice. This reaction is inappropriate, and more importantly, could make the misgendered person feel awkward and responsible for comforting you. Remember: this is not about you!   

If you hear someone else use the wrong pronouns, gently correct the mistake without anger, and without further embarrassing the misgendered person. For example, you might say “Joe uses the pronoun she,” and then let the issue drop.    

How YOU can help raise awareness and contribute to an inclusive environment   

In addition to implementing the best practices above and continuing to educate yourself on this topic, you can update your LinkedIn account with your pronouns. Simply go to your profile and edit your intro. LinkedIn added this new drop-down feature earlier this year!   

Using your pronouns in email signatures and social media biographies tells everyone that you are not going to assume their gender. This is an important step towards achieving true inclusivity in the workplace and in society at large. It helps creates a healthier, safer space so everyone can bring their ‘whole self’ to work and be respected for it.   

Together, let’s work towards real inclusivity. It’s what all good families do. 

 Want to learn more about pronouns and how to use them? Here are some useful links:   

Contact information

1 866 981-0191

1 800 647-8947

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