Workplace culture pillar:



What is an ‘Inclusive’ workplace culture and why is it important?


An inclusive culture goes beyond the drive to recruit more diverse individuals into the business. Organisations that are genuinely striving to nurture inclusion value and celebrate diverse minds and experiences, respect and appreciate all individuals, offer equal opportunities for growth, and consider (and adapt to) the unique needs of individuals.

Workplace inclusion is not just a ‘nice to have’ that helps employees feel respected, it is also beneficial to sustainable high performance. When employees feel like they belong within an organisation, they are more likely to feel motivated and committed to producing high-quality work.

Central to cultivating an inclusive culture is the buy-in of senior leaders, who themselves strive to create a psychologically safe environment in which every employee feels respected and valued. Efforts to improve inclusion and belonging should not be left to one individual or team – an organisation-wide approach, championed by senior leaders, is critical to success. As is the measurement of inclusion efforts on impact for both the business and its people.

Reflective questions

To help your organisation work towards a sustainable culture of inclusion, consider some of the following questions:

    • How are senior leaders supporting your organisations efforts to create an inclusive culture?
    • What current behaviours, structures and practices are having a detrimental impact on inclusion and belonging? What one small step can you take towards addressing these harms?
    • What actions are you taking to make your organisation an inclusive and welcoming place to work for everyone?
    • How are you measuring the impact of these actions and checking that you are moving in the right direction?
    • How are different teams and functions working collaboratively to sustain or improve EDIB within your organisation?


Resource list

FRAMEWORK: The EDI Impact Model published by The Equal Group

REPORT: What Really Works? Ensuring Inclusive Working Cultures, published by Business in the Community in association with King’s College London and Santander 

ARTICLE: Unsticking the ‘sticky floor’ for genuine workplace meritocracy, by Joanne Lockwood, Inclusion and Belonging Specialist, SEE Change Happen Ltd

ARTICLE: Diversity and inclusion: Nine ways leaders can improve their allyship skills, by Jenny Garrett Executive Coach, Leadership Trainer, DEI Expert and Author 

PODCAST: Diversity: Beyond the Checkbox, with host Jackie Ferguson