DEIA: Diversity, equity, inclusion, accessibility at your organization

Melissa Wankiewicz
DEIA at work

DEIA (diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility): It’s more than a buzzword, a policy, or a strategy—it's a set of practices centered around creating a work environment that is fair and welcoming to everyone, regardless of background. Creating an inclusive workplace helps to create a positive employee experience where everyone feels valued.

If you’re reading this, you likely already know that there are countless reasons DEIA should be top of mind for your organization, including employee trust and wellbeing, talent attraction and retention, and team performance. Not to mention that organizations that place a high priority on DEI initiatives are 2X more likely to see significant increases in revenue compared to those who don’t. 

In this blog post, we’ll look at the importance of DEIA for organizations, the four components of DEIA, and sharing how Arbinger is demonstrating our commitment to DEIA within our organization and beyond. 

What is DEIA? 

DEIA stands for diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility. This acronym represents a comprehensive approach to a workplace that’s safe, fair, respectful, and inclusive for all individuals within the organization. 

DEIA definition

DEIA in the workplace is implemented in a number of different ways, including:

  • Inclusive hiring practices
  • Diverse representation in leadership positions
  • Creating inclusive policies and practices
  • Promoting cultural competency
  • Providing accommodations for individuals with disabilities. 

Ultimately, the goal is to create a more just and inclusive organization that celebrates and values the contributions and perspectives of everyone. The four components of DEIA are:


Diversity is a critical component of DEIA. It refers to the differences that exist among people, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, socioeconomic status, physical ability, sexual orientation, and veteran status. 

Diverse workplaces have numerous benefits, including more innovation, creativity, and improved decision-making (we’ll share more on this later). Overall, according to Research and Markets, diverse companies have a per-employee cash flow 2.5 times higher than their less-diverse peers. 


Equity is the fairness and justice in treatment, opportunities, and resources for all individuals within an organization. Inequity can manifest in organizations in many ways, including pay disparities, unequal access to opportunities, and discrimination. 


Inclusion means creating an environment where everyone feels valued, respected, and supported. Employee resource groups, mentorship programs, and diversity and inclusion training for leadership and employees are just a few examples of how you can boost inclusion at work.

An inclusive work environment goes beyond diversity and aims to foster a sense of belonging, where everyone can fully participate and thrive without facing discrimination or exclusion. It’s what makes employees feel psychologically safe and makes teammates more willing to collaborate, share ideas, and ultimately drives productivity. 


Accessibility refers to an environment that’s accessible to all individuals, including those with disabilities. Accessibility can be implemented in organizations in many ways, including providing accommodations, creating accessible websites and documents, and implementing assistive technology. It’s something that’s not only important internally, but also leads to improved customer satisfaction and compliance with legal requirements. 

The benefits of DEIA in the workplace?

Strong DEIA practices ensure all voices are heard. Establishing an atmosphere of true belonging has a host of benefits across all areas of your organization and can create a competitive advantage. Some of the most impactful benefits of investing in DEIA training are:

Enhanced innovation and creativity: Research has shown that diverse teams outperform all other teams in terms of innovation and problem-solving. According to Deloitte, diversity of thinking boosts creativity, enhancing innovation by 20%.

Increased financial performance: McKinsey & Company found that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on executive teams were 25% more likely to have above-average profitability compared to companies in the bottom quartile.

Improved employee engagement and retention: Inclusive environments that value diversity and provide equal opportunities tend to have higher levels of employee engagement and satisfaction. According to a survey conducted by Deloitte, millennials are 83% more likely to be engaged at work at inclusive companies.

Broader customer base and market reach: Embracing DEIA can help organizations better understand and serve diverse customer segments. A study by Harvard Business Review revealed that diverse and inclusive cultures were 70% more likely to capture new market share.

Mitigation of bias and discrimination: Implementing DEIA training helps organizations address unconscious biases, discrimination, and unfair treatment that may exist within their teams. This fosters a more equitable and inclusive work environment, which promotes fairness and equal opportunities for all. 

After working with Arbinger to improve DEI, one large U.S. hospital had a 65% decrease in EO (equal opportunity) complaints (complaints involving discrimination based on race, color, sex, national origin, religion, or sexual orientation).

Talent acquisition and retention: DEIA initiatives make organizations more attractive to top talent from diverse backgrounds. A survey by Glassdoor revealed that 67% of job seekers consider diversity as an important factor when considering potential employers.

Arbinger’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion

The Arbinger Institute is committed to living by the core tenets of our philosophy; namely, seeing every person as a person. We endeavor to turn the world outward, both in our work with others and as we work together as an organization. 

Arbinger's DEIA commitment

We acknowledge, respect, and celebrate both our similarities and differences. We see ourselves as part of a human family, full of beautiful diversity. Arbinger acknowledges the many injustices that happen around the world stemming from a long history of systematic racism, oppression, and discrimination. We recognize that these injustices continue to happen. We are unequivocally opposed to such injustices and to all forms of dehumanization and discrimination. 

We recognize that we must always seek to improve ourselves, finding new ways to actively work against injustice, inequality, and insensitivity. As an organization, we continue to look for ways to adjust our efforts in this regard and measure our impact. This is not a project to be completed or a race with a finish line. Rather, it is the work to establish a culture of belonging by listening and learning from a place of genuine respect and curiosity. 

Part of our curiosity includes engaging in open conversation. Speaking up about where we might be falling short as an organization is not simply protected from retribution, it is encouraged from all areas and all roles. 

We have committed to seeking out diverse voices to inform our thinking and review our efforts and, to that end, have established Arbinger’s Advisory Board. This board is composed of individuals from around the world who bring unique knowledge, experience, and skills. Our culture, product, and policies will continue to be enriched by their contributions. We are actively seeking to uncover our blind spots and will urgently work to address them.

The work we do through our non-profit initiative is an important component of our commitment. Our financial support of nonprofits helps them amplify their ability to eradicate injustice in the communities they serve. 

The Arbinger principles and tools are uniquely valuable in the fight against dehumanization and injustice. The impact of seeing people as people is lasting and far-reaching, and we are encouraged to see systemic changes, resolution of generational conflicts, and remarkable community growth as the principles are applied. 

Looking ahead

Making real investments in DEIA initiatives are essential for organizations to foster a culture of belonging, stay relevant and competitive, attract and retain top talent, and improve performance. While organizational change doesn't happen overnight, by making small steps everyday (starting today!), your organization can begin to foster an inclusive and equitable workplace that demonstrates its commitment to diversity and accessibility. By working together, we can create a more diverse, equitable, inclusive, and accessible world.

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Want to learn more about how investing in DEIA can impact your organization's success? Download Arbinger’s latest research report.

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