Many large and successful companies nowadays offer same-sex partner health benefits and other policies friendly to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees. And some are going the extra mile—not only seeking more fulfilled and productive workers but also trying to cater to increasingly visible and influential households. LGBT consumers represent a whopping $769 billion in buying power this year, up from $743 billion in 2009, according to Witeck-Combs Communi-cations, a marketing firm specializing in gay and lesbian consumers, and MarketResearch.com.
“Buying power is one measure by which we understand the total contribution of the gay community,” says Bob Witeck, CEO of Witeck-Combs. “They’re also shareholders, executives, labor organizers and families that exist throughout every aspect of our economy, and companies take them into account for all these roles they play, including leadership or management potential.”