How To Promote Workplace Equality and Stop Discrimination

Equality is essential because the need to belong is a natural human instinct.  Therefore, equality in the workplace is a crucial requirement.  Staff who feel they belong, are likely to remain committed, motivated and are excellent advocates of your business.

The benefits of implementing a workplace equality & diversity culture

Equality is essential because the need to belong is a natural human instinct.  Therefore, equality in the workplace is a crucial requirement.  Staff who feel they belong, are likely to remain committed, motivated and are excellent advocates of your business.

Additionally, we must remember why the majority of businesses are formed in the first place – to provide a service/product to customers with a view of making a profit.  If we look at the components of any successful team, you will identify diversity is key to that team’s success. If a football team is composed of the top eleven strikers in the world, it will not win anything. The team requires an outstanding goalkeeper, players that can defend, tackle, have leadership skills as well as the skill to score.  The workplace team also needs huge diversity of skill sets, including people who have the ability to think and act differently from each other.

Key meanings


Equality means treating everyone fairly and making sure that no one suffers or is disadvantaged when it comes to getting what they need. The UK Government Strategy for Equality 2010 outlines equality as: “Equality can mean many different things to many different people. This strategy focuses on two principles of equality: Equal treatment and equal opportunity. It is not right or fair that people are discriminated against because of who they are or what they believe. So, we need to stop that discrimination and change behaviour. And it is not right or fair that the opportunities open to people are not based on their ambition, ability or hard work, but on who their parents are or where they live. So, we need to break down the barriers that hold people back and give them the opportunities to succeed.”


There are specific definitions of various forms of discrimination, in general terms, it occurs when a person treats another less favourably than they treat or would treat others because of a protected characteristic. Under the UK’s Equality Act 2010, a protected characteristic includes age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation. 


Inclusion occurs when everyone in a workplace is treated fairly. Everyone has equal access to opportunities and resources, but individual needs are respected. In an inclusive working environment, everyone feels valued for who they are and that their contribution matters, enabling them to perform to their full potential.

How to promote workplace equality

Now that you have a clearer idea of what equality looks like, how does a workplace achieve it? Here are some Workplace equality tips:

1. Identify and prevent unconscious bias

We all have unconscious biases. If we don’t acknowledge this about ourselves then how can we tackle it?

2. Put workplace equality policies in place

Everyone should be treated fairly in all day-to-day activities and work-related decisions (recruitment, training, promotion, allocating work, pay, etc.). We should be embracing people’s differences.

3. Mind your language

Check that all your communications are free of discriminatory and sexist language. Careless or sloppy language and stereotyping, however unintentional, can create a perception of inequality and make people feel vulnerable.

4. Use objective criteria

When recruiting, training and promoting, ensure you have clear, objective criteria so that you always make decisions based on merit and you are not influenced by bias. Encourage group decision-making or conduct audits if there is a concern about a particular team, manager or business unit.

Impact of your behaviours on culture 

You live your values through your behaviours, symbols and systems, and these, in turn, drive culture. 

The information below depicts how different behaviours drive a range of cultures.

Your BehaviourCulture It Drives
Humility, e.g., being willing to admit mistakesOpenness with a focus on learning
Seeking out and listening to othersCustomer focus
Asking for and following up on commitmentsAccountability
Saying no and taking no as an answerDiscipline, control of risks
Managing PerformanceCohesion
Accepting justifications for non-performance Avoidance
Favouring one person over others for reasons not based on performance             Politics
Blaming PeopleCover-Ups


To change culture, you will need to work hard on changing your behaviours and others’ behaviours, which ultimately require shifts in your values. Each behaviour and decision sends a message, which people interpret as a reflection of what is valued, which then moulds others’ behaviours and decisions. Hence it is key you “walk the talk.”

In summary, workplace equality:

Is a culture that encompasses policies, communication, and systems. Building a culture based on equality and inclusion is an intentional act.  If you have any questions about how to promote workplace equality and stop discrimination, feel free to get in touch with us today. We are more than happy to support you with the management of your workplace equality.