Exploring the benefits of equality, diversity and inclusion intersectionality

Lizzie Buxton

Written By Lizzie Buxton

9th February 2023

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How adopting a positive workplace culture that supports EDI intersectionality can increase business performance

Equality, diversity, and inclusion (ED&I) have become increasingly important topics in the modern workplace, with organisations striving to create inclusive environments where all employees feel valued and respected. However, these efforts can often fall short if they don’t consider the intersectionality of their employee’s identity and experiences. Intersectionality refers to the complex ways in which various social identities intersect, this includes factors such as race, gender, sexuality, and socio-economic status, and how these intersections impact individuals in unique and often compounded ways.

Here are five tips to help organisations become EDI intersectionality-inclusive employers:

Complete a diversity audit

A comprehensive assessment of the current state of diversity and inclusivity in the organisation can give valuable insight into various aspects such as hiring practices, employee demographics, salary equality, career advancement opportunities, and workplace culture. Identifying areas where the organisation needs to improve in terms of representation and treatment of different marginalised groups helps to truly understand the unique experiences and perspectives of each employee. This can inform the development of actionable ED&I strategies that are tailored to meet the specific needs of the organisation and promote a more inclusive and equitable workplace for all employees.

Develop and implement EDI intersectionality policies

Specific policies to acknowledge those who have interconnected protected characteristics helps to create a more inclusive and equal environment for all employees. Having the ability to address the unique experiences and challenges faced by these employees creates a workplace culture that values and supports diverse backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives in turn breaking down any barriers to full participation and advancement for those who have historically been excluded.

Provide training and education

Helping employees to understand the ways in which different identities intersect and impact individuals through learning and development training not only increases awareness and promotes respect, but it ensures employees feel valued in the workplace which is vital for employee engagement and satisfaction. A workforce that has clear understanding of these impacts is more likely to be innovative and productive, as diverse teams bring a wider range of perspectives and experiences to problem-solving, helping organisations to achieve their goals.

Monitor and adapt EDI initiatives

Constantly monitoring EDI initiatives ensures organisations are prepared for new legislation, protected characteristics, and ensuring a consistently inclusive and equal work environment. It helps to ensure that all employees are treated fairly, regardless of their race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and other personal characteristics. By considering the intersectionality of EDI, organisations can better understand the unique experiences and challenges faced by different groups and create more tailored and effective policies. This leads to improved employee satisfaction, increased diversity in the workforce, and a more positive company culture.

Advocate for EDI intersectionality

Not only can advocating for EDI affect an organisation externally, but employees can benefit internally through feeling valued and engaged which leads to improved satisfaction and motivation, increased innovation, and new ideas for problem-solving. Externally the organisation’s reputation is enhanced as it can be seen as more desirable, helping to attract and retain top talent, customers, and partners who share similar values on diversity and inclusion. In short, embracing EDI intersectionality can lead to an increased organisational performance and financial turnover, and a positive impact in society.

Find out how truly inclusive your organisation through our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion calculator, here.

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