This qualitative study done through phenomenological and lived experience research, set out to further the understanding of out at work employees and explore the factors that most influenced their decision to come out in the workplace. 11 employees across the country who identified as out-at-work were interviewed and asked to describe the things that were most influential to them in the process of deciding whether to come out. Findings indicated that employees were motivated by a desire to help others by being out, the visibility of other out-at-work employees, and multiple supportive leadership behaviors. Employees also indicated that there were external factors that had an influence on their decision, inclusive of the political environment and geography.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (MA) -- Organization Development; Homosexuality in the workplace -- United States; Diversity in the workplace; Employee motivation

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graziadio Business School



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Faculty Advisor

Rhodes, Kent;