Newsletter of the Needham Rotary Club for November 2nd, 2021
Mark Your Calendar: Upcoming Community Service and Social Activities:
Our Speaker: Janika LeMaitre (she/her), The Better Professional, "Handling Gender-Neutral Pronouns with Style"
Jan is the founder of a business and personal brand consultancy, "The Better Professional". She is a certified etiquette and protocol specialist with the Protocol School of Washington and the British School of Etiquette. She grew up in Australia, currently lives in Weston and is a member of the Weston-Wayland Rotary Club. She and Bill Paulson work together on Rotary's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Team.
The Better Professional provides consulting, coaching and speaking services to help a client's business, brand or reputation evolve successfully. She offers training modules addressing: branding, professional soft skills, international etiquette, event preparation and how to set up a business in digital space. She caters to the following industries: hospitality, fashion, retail, travel, salons, food & beverage and information technology.
We use pronouns to refer to a person without using their name. The most common pronouns, he/she, specifically refer to a person's gender. For queer, gender non-conforming, non-binary or transgender people these labels may not fit, causing stress and anxiety. Proper pronoun etiquette demonstrates your acceptance of persons displaying these characteristics.
Examples:SubjectObjectPossessive AdjectivePossessive PronounReflexive
Gender NeutralZeHirHirHirsHirself
Gender Neutral Pronunciationzeehereherehereshereself
If you interact with someone who discloses themself as gender-neutral, ask them what pronouns they would prefer to be known by. When you are introducing them or making a reference about them, be sure to insert the proper pronoun. Here's an example of an introduction of Shannon: "Hello James, this is Shannon. Ze (pronounced "zee") is interested in Rotary. I went with hir (pronounced "here") to the last meeting." There are other, alternative pronouns that a person may specify that didn't fit in my simplified chart above. If you don't know a person's pronouns, just ask!
For more information, you can contact Jan at her email address: janika@better-professional.com.
Our Next Meeting: Tuesday November 9th at noon. Our Speaker will be: Sarah Winig, Needham Education Foundation