With more of the workforce choosing the vegan lifestyle, this is an aspect of diversity that thoughtful companies are often getting on the job training about how to support vegan workers. Others are being very proactive about learning what they can in order to be as inclusive with their entire workforce as possible.
It may be difficult to get a truly accurate picture of the growth of those who identify as vegan, but some indications are it has grown over 300% in the last 15 years. According to some estimates, about 3% of the global population identify as vegan.
However, in the last five years, there has been substantial growth for individuals and businesses such as manufacturers, restaurants, clothing lines and running shoes.
Denial is Futile
To deny the growth and not offer more inclusive opportunities in the workforce for vegans, may be to the detriment of an organization.
Sammie Walker Herrera not only knows what it’s like to be vegan from the employee perspective, but also from an organizational perspective.
As a vegan herself, Sammie shares what it was like to be in an environment where she wasn’t always vegan and the response she received when she made the lifestyle choice.
Sammie is a Certified Career Coach and Accountability Coach with Self Made Millennial, a career coaching start-up that reaches an audience of over a half a million people & known for its award-winning job search YouTube Channel.
In her role as an accountability coach with Self Made Millennial, Sammie works with her clients to stay the course with their job search. She also helps them to identify what are “must haves” when negotiating for a position beyond pay.
The goal is to help people know the step-by-step ways to navigate a modern job search. The challenge many people have is they are working off an old model. In my interview with founder of Self-Made Millennial, Madeline Mann, we dug deep into what job seekers in today’s job market need to know.
How to Let People Know You’re Vegan
Some have described their vegan journey as somewhat of a coming out. In some circles, there are social stigmas to the term “vegan.”
Yet, more and more, vegans are not willing to hide this lifestyle choice. Especially when so much, like animal rights and the environment, are at risk.
It’s best to approach the subject in a very positive way. If you haven’t talked to someone in a while, and let’s say, you’re doing a zoom call, when they ask what’s new, let them know.
With companies, be willing to incorporate vegan choices into the food choices at the snack bar or in the cafeteria, in your reward system and in the choices you offer at company gatherings. Avoid making this an afterthought.
Recommendations for Finding Aligned Positions
Rather than throw your resume up on the proverbial job seekers wall, take a more focused approach.
Utilize the availability of networking platforms like LinkedIn. Research companies to learn more about their values and how they align with yours. Be aware of the companies that simply use buzzwords to attract talent; those that green-wash or vegan-wash. Rather, dig deep to find out if they actually walk the talk of what’s important to you.
Be willing to ask questions during an interview. An interview will be more successful when you have a conversation rather than a one-sided dialogue. Think through questions that are important for you to know the answer to before beginning your interview.
Most of all, be a confident vegan if in fact, you are vegan. You don’t need to hide it, apologize about it or skirt around the issue. The more natural you are in any conversation, the more at ease others will likely be.
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