Recent Chapman University Global Communication graduate and full-time tech recruiter, Neil Collins (prounouns he/him), had the honor of working with Oracle’s Pride Employee Network, an employee resource group for LGBTQIA+ people at the company, to host a “Pronouns Matter” training session for over 1,000+ employees globally. This event came about when some members of the OPEN community at Oracle raised awareness about proper pronoun usage in our talent selection process. The session, produced and hosted by Neil, showed the employee base the true importance of proper gender pronoun usage. Oracle Global Vice President of Talent Acquisition Jan Ackerman kicked off the call alongside Neil, stating that, “It is important that our organization steps up to ensure that Oracle remains an inclusive and welcoming employer for people of all gender and gender identities.”

This robust training also included an engaging panel and an enlightening Q&A session. The panel Neil put together had Oracle Senior Cloud Engineer Shane Landrum (pronouns they/them) discuss their experience as a non-binary individual in the workplace. Shane’s teaching moment occurred when they said, “It’s really common in my experience for people at Oracle to misgender me and just assume that, because I look the way I do, that I use he/him pronouns. I work in a really male-dominated corner of Oracle, the sales organization, and in my experience, I gain benefits from being perceived as just another guy. It is often uncomfortable for me when I choose to correct people about my pronouns because if I correct people about my pronouns, I feel like I am making myself stick out.”

Neil also had the privilege of hosting subject matter expert Madelyn Gelpi (pronouns anything respectful) from Out & Equal, a premier organization consulting Fortune 500 companies on LGBTQIA+ topics. Madelyn provided the Oracle team with some crucial insights and reminded everyone about the importance of respect. Many of the teams at Oracle that received this training have started to add all of their pronouns to their accounts, and they are excited to continue this conversation across the enterprise.

Jan Ackerman
Pronouns: He/Him
SVP of Talent @Oracle

“This gender pronouns training was insightful, intentional and right on target for our Talent Acquisition team. The training showed us the power of understanding the importance of using pronouns and creating a more inclusive environment for our current and future employees. It remains one of the most positive rated trainings we have ever conducted.”