Our 4C Diversity, Equality, Equity & Inclusion (DEEI) model assesses how individuals experience diversity, equality, equity, and inclusion at work. It looks at the employee experience through the lenses of human needs.

When well-functioning, meaningful and purposeful DEEI is in place, we can create working conditions where everyone's human needs are met, regardless of background, identity or circumstance. If those needs are not being met, it has a direct impact on our mental wellbeing and happiness, but also on our abilities, cognitive performance, intelligence and productivity.

Below, we look at the 16 sub areas within the DEEI model.

This glossary is a list of the different areas investigated as part of the DEEI survey, with explanations of what they are and why they are important to you and your employees.

The DEEI survey is here to help you understand how individuals experience DEEI, provide managers with real insights and clarity about what is happening within their team as well as providing the organisation with an overview of which aspects of the culture employees feel need improving.

Privacy

People need to feel safe at work without worrying that information about their private life will be somehow used against them. When it comes to people’s private life, it should be up to each individual to decide what they want to share at work. It is essential to create a safe environment that gives people the confidence to share details they are comfortable with. No one should be discriminated if they choose NOT to talk about their private life.

Free from worry

It is important that people have a variety of safe and confidential ways to challenge decisions, raise concerns and suggest changes, and that they can do so without worrying about the consequences. Line managers are people's first point of contact and are responsible for creating a safe place to work. It is important that managers, and employees alike, don’t tolerate any unacceptable behaviour.

Opportunities

It is important to give people fair and equal development opportunities, continually guide and support them in their career development, ensure that company’s application processes are fair, and that everyone has fair and equal opportunities to career development and promotion.

Achievement

It is important that the recognition and reward processes (at team, organisation, and company level) are equal, fair, and transparent. Each person who makes the same, or similar, contribution has to have an equal likelihood of receiving recognition for their efforts. Favouritism has no place in equal and inclusive workplace. Although recognition is often more important to people than the reward, it is important that all incentives and rewards are inclusive, meaningful and something people appreciate.

Enablement

If we want to bring the best out of people, enable them to work in the most optimal way, maximise their skills and contributions, and create true equity in the organisation, it is essential to acknowledge that everyone has different needs for training, tools, and support. People have different needs for support, so it is useful to provide them with flexible ways to get support to ensure that they get the help they need, at the time they need it, and in the way that best suits them.

Adjustments

It is important to be aware of people’s circumstances and needs and when they change. The Equality Act 2010 gives employers some specific legal responsibilities for accommodating people’s needs at work. But as managers have a 'duty of care' towards all their employees, it is good practice to try to accommodate everyone’s needs by adjusting work arrangements, practices, and environment when reasonable.

Utilisation

People have a variety of amazing skills, but only when the manager is aware of them, and know what people are good at, can they put individuals’ skills into use appropriately and meaningfully. Optimal utilisation can be achieved when managers recognise individuals’ skills and desires, and match people to roles, responsibilities, and opportunities that best suit them. It is essential to understand that each individual is different and that some roles are more suitable to some people than others.

Participation

It is important that people feel respected, valued, and included at work. That is best achieved by having regular discussions with individuals, and by keeping people informed of any changes that may impact them, letting them have a say in matters that affect them and enabling them to be involved in planning and decision-making.

It is also important that people feel empowered to influence their collective work practices and discuss matters within their team.

Contribution

When we know how our work contributes to the bigger picture and shared goals, our work feels more purposeful. Tell your people that their work matters and demonstrate how. Ensure people know what their team and company goals are and how their work (collectively and individually) contributed to them. Ensure your employees know that their contribution is recognised and appreciated.

Belonging

It is important to keep people informed of what is happening in the company, invite them to take part in business activities in/outside their job role, and let people choose how they want to be involved. Working together and helping each other creates a feeling of togetherness and belonging. A truly inclusive workplace values and encourages collaboration across teams and organisations, and as a result people seek to do things together and help each other.

Being heard

Everyone needs to be given an equal chance to be heard, be it in informal discussions with colleagues or in team meetings. It is important that line managers are interested in their employees’ ideas, opinions, and perspectives, and that they actively invite people to have a say. Only when we feel heard and valued, do we feel included. Honest two-way communication is an important part of good people management practices and inclusive workplaces.

Support

Managers have a responsibility – a 'duty of care' – to look after their people. They are not expected to solve all people’s problems, but must take time to listen and be aware of what is going on with them, so they can provide support. Colleagues can support each other in many ways too. It is important that people are given sufficient time and space to be together, and are equipped to support each other, and provided with training and tools when necessary. It is also important to give people access to external, independent support such as Employee Assistant Programs.

Safety

Feeling safe physically and psychologically is the most important human need. Managers must create a safe place for people to bring their whole self to work, and create conditions where no one tolerates any form of discrimination or unacceptable behaviour. Biases and a lack of understanding about people’s differences often cause intolerance, discrimination and even hatred. It is important to help everyone in the company better understand each other’s differences and learn how to be more understanding and tolerant towards each other.

Respect

Feeling respected for who we are is an essential human need. We must learn to accept and respect people the way they are, even if they may be very different from us. Biases and a lack of understanding are often behind disrespect. In a workplace people need to learn to accept and respect others’ differences, regardless of their personal feelings. It is important to help and teach people to understand each other’s differences and interact with each other respectfully.

Individuality

People bring a variety of unique experiences, thoughts, and skills to the workplace. It is important that everyone feels their individuality is accepted and valued, and that no one is discriminated or mistreated because of their individuality.

Variety

Welcoming a diverse range of people is important. Diversity is a much-discussed topic. One obvious way to improve diversity is to start recruiting and hiring more diverse people (i.e., people with different characteristics, abilities, personalities, identities, backgrounds etc.) and another one is to increase and spread diversity, equality, equity, and inclusion equally across the whole organisation, at all levels. Senior management team should reflect the diversity of the workforce. Diversity of the workforce should reflect the local population, and ideally the customers. People from underrepresented / minority groups should have fair and equal opportunities to progress their careers within the company.

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