DEI is important to the wide majority of your current and potential employees. Are you making your commitment known? A DEI statement is one approach to proclaiming your organization’s stance and approach to fostering and equitable and inclusive workplace.
Two years ago, Glassdoor set out to discover how much people value a prospective employer’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). More than three in four employees and job seekers (76 percent) reported a diverse workforce is an important factor when evaluating companies and job offers. And about four in five Black (80 percent), Hispanic (80 percent), and LGBTQ (79 percent) job seekers and employees reported a diverse workforce is an important factor when evaluating companies and job offers.
What is a DEI statement?
A DEI statement describes an organization’s pledge to advancing equity and inclusion among its employees, stakeholders, and customers. A mission statement outlines why an organization exists, whom it serves, and what are its overall goals. A DEI statement establishes the purpose and intention for an organization’s journey.
What should I consider when writing a DEI statement?
If your company is setting out to write its own DEI statement, here are some tips to keep in mind.
Start with your mission.
Look at your mission statement and go from there. Your DEI statement should be an extension of your organization’s mission. It defines why your agency is pursing its DEI journey.
Describe underrepresented groups.
A DEI statement explicitly calls out the underrepresented populations your organization is committed to serving, both within your workforce (employees) and externally (the community). Every company will have a different mix of groups depending on its geography, demographics, and mission.
Break it down.
To make it more memorable, separate the DEI statement into two parts. The first is a headline of sorts, succinctly declaring that DEI is a main priority of your agency. The second part is a longer description of how you walk your diversity talk, including high-level examples of DEI in action.
Keep it simple.
In total, keep your DEI statement at 100 words or less. Use simple words and short sentences so it is easy to understand and remember. As a guideline, write to an 8th-grade reading level and do not exceed 15 words in a sentence. You may decide to link the statement to a page that provides more detailed information about DEI efforts at your organization.
The language of your DEI statement should be inclusive, affirming, and optimistic. Call out solutions and specific examples, not problems. Use positive words like “empower,” “create,” and “learn.” One purpose of a DEI statement is for people to feel good after reading it. You want employees to be proud that your organization is actively advancing DEI, and excited to be a part of those efforts.
DEI statement examples
Here are three examples of our favorite DEI statements.
This statement is very succinct and presented as part of WID’s Mission, Vision, Values, and History page.
Diversity and Inclusion Statement Headline: Inclusion, Equity, and Diversity
WID is committed to maintaining a culture of diversity and equity in fundraising and related professions. As a membership body, our strength is in our promise to be inclusive, with intentional strategies to welcome and uplift historically marginalized identities and people within our field.
This statement is positive, inclusive, and easy to consume in its short, bulleted format.
Diversity Inclusion Statement Headline: United Way fights for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in every community.
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Statement of Principle
We take the broadest possible view of diversity.
We value the visible and invisible qualities that make you who you are.
We welcome that every person brings a unique perspective and experience to advance our mission and progress our fight for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in every community.
We believe that each United Way community member, donor, volunteer, advocate, and employee must have equal access to solving community problems.
We strive to include diversity, equity, and inclusion practices at the center of our daily work.
We commit to using these practices for our business and our communities.
Join us in embracing diversity, equity and inclusion for every person in every community.
This statement is descriptive, with examples of how Netflix’s products support its DEI commitment.
Diversity Inclusion Statement Headline: Inclusion on-screen starts with inclusion in the office
Sowing the Seeds: Inclusion Takes Root at Netflix
Netflix’s greatest impact is in storytelling. Stories like 13th, Disclosure, Selena, Da 5 Bloods, Special and The Half of It broaden representation, empathy and understanding. We create and connect these stories to people all around the globe – removing the barriers of language, device, ability or connectivity. Better representation on-screen starts with representation in the office. Our work has to be internal first, so it can impact what we do externally. We believe we’ll do that better if our employees come from different backgrounds, and if we create an environment of inclusion and belonging for them.
Your organization is ready to get serious about Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI). But what does that mean? What departments does that include? How do you start? We’ve prepared this visual tool to help you better understand what’s included in a DEI plan and where you can start.