Know Gender Identity Terms to Raise Awareness in the Workplace

It is highly advised for HR Managers to raise LGBT+ awareness, informing each department that there are more than two genders.

Gender is a spectrum, not a binary.  It is important to recognize this distinction because binary thinking around gender can exclude a large and overlooked part of the workforce.

There are an estimated 1.4 million transgender adults in the United States today, representing about 0.6% of the adult population.

In the United Kingdom, a recent survey found that 13% of the country's LGBT+ community identified as transgender.

A 2018 survey of transgender and non-binary Brits found that over 50% hide their identity at work for fear of discrimination, while a 2015 report found that transgender residents of California were three times as likely to be unemployed as the rest of the adult population.

The first steps are LGBT+ awareness, understanding, and trying to get the language right, a practice companies have widely embraced for race and ethnicity, but not so much for gender.  With that in mind, here are 15 terms related to gender identity that anyone involved in hiring should add to their vocabulary. Enclosed you will find the most common ones. To view a more complete list offered by LinkedIn, please click here.


Non-binary is an umbrella term for people whose gender identity is neither solely male nor solely female. You can identify as non-binary while also identifying with other terms on this list, like genderqueer.


Transgender individuals have a gender identity that is not aligned with the sex they were assigned at birth. A transgender person may have already transitioned to their personal gender identity or be in the process of transitioning.


Genderfluid individuals have a gender identity that isn’t fixed but varies over time. The way they express their gender will likely change to reflect how they identify from one day to the next. They may, for example, present as masculine one day, feminine the next, and neither the day after that.