TTimmons Final Research Paper

Submitted By Taylormadisson
Words: 2412
Pages: 10

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Sexuality in the Workplace;

the Affects of Leadership when Leaders Remain Closeted

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Written by Taylor Timmons

of Johnson & Wales University

Sexuality in the Workplace — CEOs; Closeted Executive Officers

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Abstract

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This paper explores the connection to leadership and sexual orientation.
Research examines the leadership model and if being “out” at the corporate level (CEO/CFOs) makes an impact to subordinates, customers and shareholders. The commitment of the organization, their ability to deter negativity and provide recognition. The paper will detail the needs of a leader to instill a sense of morale, increase productivity and the ways that being “out” allows one to be effective. Contrasting views will be examined as there may be benefits to remain closeted.

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Keywords:

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Gay Leaders, Lesbian Leaders, Gay CEOs, LGBT Leaders, Effective Leaders,
LGBT Management, LGBT Employment Standards, Corporate Gender
Norms, Corporate Equality, Equality Indexes, Pride at Work, Out CEOs,
Pro-Gay Companies, Anti-Gay Companies, Benefits of Being Out, NonDiscrimination Policy, Equal Benefits, Organizational LGBT Competency,
Public Commitment with LGBT specific efforts

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Taylor Timmons

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Sexuality in the Workplace — CEOs; Closeted Executive Officers

Introduction

To begin, imagine the following scenarios as they relate to the abstract:

Scenario #1

You begin working for a company and recommend a friend for a position. The

friend goes through the hiring process and even comes in for an interview.

Afterwards, the hiring manager lets you know that they won’t be hiring him because

of his sexual orientation.

Scenario #2

You’re working for a company and have a strong reputation for high productivity. It’s

6-months in and you’re feeling more comfortable with sharing a bit of who you are.

A coworker begins to talk about their honeymoon. You share your story, yet it is

revealed that your partner is of the same sex. You’re fired an hour later due to

reasons unannounced.

Scenario #3

You’re the CEO of a company and believe in anonymity. You keep your

personal life hidden and do your best to shield any negative implications. Media

coverage begin speaking about rumors of your homosexuality. The rumors have

made their way to the boardroom floor and you’re under attack. You resign within a

week.

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These scenarios are depictions of the daily lives of LGBT businessmen and women. It is

legal in 29 states for an organization to fire someone merely of sexual orientation (Eisenberg
2014), job discrimination is heavy throughout the hiring process (ENDA 2014) and CEOs of highprofile companies are being scrutinized regularly for their personal lives, including their sexuality
(Tobak 2014).

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That is the importance of this research: should leaders at the corporate level remain closeted?

What effects does it have on the employees, shareholders and customers? Should companies be more alert and sociably responsible for LGBT issues?

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Taylor Timmons

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Sexuality in the Workplace — CEOs; Closeted Executive Officers

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Examples
CEO of Apple; Tim Cook

Most recently, Tim Cook of Apple has come out. It has been under serious scrutiny and the

center of controversy. November 1st, 2014, Deena Fidas of the Human Rights Campaign stated that “before Cook came out, there were no openly gay CEOs in the fortune 500 (Cohn 2014)”. It is the struggles of being a gay man in the corporate world that has given him the thick skin, which is needed in his industry. His coming out was in an effort to help people that are possibly struggling, as advocacy and workplace equality are crucial to success.

CEO of Burberry; Christopher…