53. Job hunting and career progression for the trans, gender diverse, and nonbinary professionals - with Jacob Thomas.

Jacob Thomas is a human rights activist and one of Australia’s most prominent leaders in sexual orientation and gender identity. I invited Jacob to be a guest on the podcast so that they could help me unpack some of the many questions I have about how employers, recruiters, and coaches can better support trans, gender diverse, and nonbinary professionals. And Jacob did not disappoint. This is a much-needed discussion that I hope all my listeners will be interested in for their personal and professional development.

Some of the topics of our conversation include:

  • choosing pronouns,
  • employers and organizations looking for quick wins with what Jacob explains is “pink” dollar
  • the recruitment of queers employees to reach diversity markers
  • issues with dress codes
  • conscious and unconscious bias
  • Jacob’s experience in changing their gender marker with their employer
  • and much more.

Jacob and I are friends, so the first 12 minutes is a bit of banter, where at least twice, I cried with laughter. This episode celebrates 1-year of podcasting, and it's such a joy for me to share this milestone with them. So I refused to edit anything out! I'd love you to join the fun and watch it on video for more of an immersive experience!  

Audio version:

About our guest, Jacob Thomas:

Jacob Thomas is one of Australia’s most prominent leaders in sexual orientation and gender identity. A nonbinary person living in Melbourne, Jacob uses the pronouns they/them and works at the Monash Warwick Alliance as their Education Project Coordinator, where they also guest lecture in Global Studies.
In 2016 Jacob received the Queen's Young Leader Award, recognizing Jacob’s work on suicide prevention for Australia’s LGBTIQ community. Jacob previously sat as the Coordinator of the Commonwealth Youth Gender and Equality Network (CYGEN) and represented the network at international levels such as the 61st session of UN Women’s Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) and the ECOSOC Youth Forum in New York, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, the 11th Commonwealth Youth Forum in London, and at AIDS2018 in Amsterdam.
Jacob advises public, private, and non-profit organizations on issues related to the LGBTIQ community, diversity and inclusion policies, and queer-friendly work environments. They are a mentor to many queer, allies, and senior leaders in Melbourne and internationally.
A greater speaker and facilitator, Jacob, has presented a TEDx Talk at QUT on the ideas around gender identity, is a contributor to Archer Magazine and Star Observer, and has written a personal essay for BuzzFeed about their experience coming out as nonbinary.
Jacob is interested in queer perspectives in intercultural learning, feminist methodologies, and youth leadership. They are currently undertaking their Masters in International Development at RMIT. In their spare time, Jacob is a performer, designer, and sometimes drag artist.

Audio podcast:

Links mentioned in this episode:


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Renata Bernarde | Virtual Coach | Career Management Strategist | Job Hunting Expert

Host, The Job Hunting Podcast
Founder & Chief Coach, Pantala Academy
Managing Director, Pantala Pty Ltd
Level 14, 333 Collins Street, Melbourne Victoria 3000 Australia
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