OUT at Work


I don't know about you, but I was not born with a silver spoon in my mouth.  So, if you're like me, there is some form of work you do for money. I often receive messages from men online offering me money to perform tasks that, although I excel at, I have no interest in performing for and/or to them.  It's for this reason you won't see me working a corner.  Not that there is anything wrong with that.  I fully support sex workers if that's the career path they've chosen, but it's simply not for me...unless all my clients look like they came straight out of GQ magazine and are willing to pay premium rates.  I mean, we're talking no less than $5,000 for a dinner date (just dinner), $20k for a HJ, $50k for a BJ, $100K to top you, and $500k for me to bottom. lol 

In other words, I have a day job. 



Now that we've established that I'm not a sex worker you may ask, what is it that I actually do for money? Four days a week you will find me with my nose deep in excel sheets, bridging communications between Asset Managers, the Analytical, and the Operational teams at one of the top three Credit Rating Agencies all while developing and enhancing processes and workflows. NINETEEN years at the same company and counting!  I've been told I'm pretty good at my job, but hey, lets stay humble.

It can be difficult for some folks to "come out" at work regarding their sexual orientation or gender identity. Unfortunately, coming out at work means harassment from colleagues and management, and for some unfortunate few it can mean termination.   To this day in 2022 it is still illegal to be openly a part of the LGBTQ+ community in certain parts of the world. If you're fortunate like I am to be living in a place like New York City you know that although you are protected by law, maneuvering "coming out" of the closet at work can be challenging.  



DRESS CODE

Many if not MOST employers have a dress code.  If you're familiar with work dress codes you know they are usually quite binary, differentiating between what men and women can and can't wear during working hours.  

Binary dress codes don't and never have worked for me.  So when I show up to the office I give them my full self. That being said, I of course keep my attire toned down and office appropriate.  


I prefer pants over dresses or skirts while in the office.  I'm told I have bangin' legs but the office is not the place I choose to show them off.  I choose flats over heels for comfort.  


I choose minimal clean makeup instead of heavy smoky looks. I pull my hair back into a ponytail and away from my face most days. I wear my prescription nerdy glasses. 
(2022)

And I do the work I am paid to do. I use the skills I've honed and perfected over the years.  The office is not the place to wear my date night outfits. 

Date night

RESTROOMS

Most work spaces split their restrooms into two categories, Male and Female.  I'm lucky enough to have a third option. A gender neutral restroom. I use the gender neutral restroom as often as I can.  If the company you work at doesn't have a gender neutral restroom I strongly suggest you advocate for one.  It will change your working life for the better regardless of what your gender identity is.  


CUSTOMER FACING

The nature of my job has me communicating with internal and external parties mostly via email or phone calls. This means they hear my voice and read my words more than they see my physical self.  This makes it easier to focus on my work and less on my presentation.  I understand this is a luxury many gender variant folks don't have. My only tip is if you have to face the general public at your job, remember to smile.  I know you may roll your eyes when I say that, but a smile goes a long way.  You'd be surprised how little some people care about your gender identity when you provide them with the service they need and you do it with a smile.


PRONOUNS

My email signature shows my preferred pronouns under my name.  I've "transitioned" while at the same job I've had for 19 years.  I don't want to make it weird for my colleagues so I keep my email signature as He/They/Theirs.  For me the "He" in my email signature denotes "Assigned Male at Birth" and the "They/Theirs" denotes my awareness of Gender Identity and my affiliation with the LGBTQ+ community.  



One of my recent lovers asked me if those are my preferred pronouns.  I told him, that they do the job while at work but I prefer my love partner to use the "She" pronoun for me.  I'm somewhat heteronormative in that way. 

BUSINESS HEADSHOT

The company I work for has an Intranet (internal internet) where each employee have their own work profile.  We are encouraged to upload a business headshot.  My profile headshot is OLD and needs updating for sure. It was taken back in 2019.  The hormones hadn't quite soften my face yet.  

(2019)

Business headshots are another area where gender variant individuals have to make the choice of how they want to present themselves to their employer and colleagues.  You wouldn't think twice about wearing a tie in your business headshot unless you are gender variant.  My only tip: wear a blazer, clean makeup, and get your hair did.  Smiling is optional here.  

Business is business and when I prep to go into the office I remind myself of this.  I bring my whole self to work while still "softening" my appearance and gender expression so that the focus is on the work I provide and not on the other facets of my life.  I'm flexible with pronouns and understand that folks once they get to know me won't care about them as long as we get the job done and have fun in the process. 

My final tip: Take advantage of your company's ERG (Employee Resource Groups).  If your company doesn't yet offer an LGBTQ+ ERG then consider starting one yourself.  We are often the minority in most companies but you'll be surprised how starting an LGBTQ+ ERG will not only bring together folks from our community but it will also bridge the gap with our allies.  An ERG can turn the workplace from somewhere you have to frequent in order to make money, to a place you want to embrace for human connection.

Ok, enough of that, get back to work.





 

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