Henley Business School

Conversations on equity, diversity and inclusion.

Uncovering why racial inequality exists in UK businesses.

An important conversation

The Black Lives Matter social movement in 2020 commenced 12 months of global conversation and action about racial injustices. Many in the business world weighed in by committing to increased focus on diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

As thought-leader on business in the real world,  Henley Business School worked with Engine Mischief to devise a campaign that would evolve the conversation on D&I in the workplace to be about racial equity – targeted support for ethnic minority team members and the positive business implications to come from it.

The campaign required robust quantitative and secondary research at its core.

Analysis built on dual methodologies

Working in partnership with Henley Business School throughout the research process, the team conducted a quantitative online survey with employees and business leaders to hear their first-hand experiences. The team worked with a specialist panel sample provider to survey a spread of employees across a mix of protected characteristics and business leaders/decision makers across a mix of organisations and industries.

Further to this, the team conducted market analysis to gather specific business performance and diversity data points from companies listed on the FTSE 350. This data  supported our statistical modelling based on 100 companies across three trading years with data points including total revenue, operating profit, market capitalisation and ethnic minority board representation analysed.

A preview of The Equity Effect published by Henley Business School, who partnered with Engine.

The Equity Effect

The published report ‘The Equity Effect’ delivered rich insights, identifying the factors driving racial inequity in British workplaces including perceived cultural differences and a lack of diversity in leadership teams seen as factors driving racial inequities.

Additionally, the research revealed a significant correlation between more diverse and inclusive business environments and overall financial performance. We found that businesses which actively confront inequity and racism with practical measures, can expect to see an improvement in their employees’ job satisfaction, loyalty, and an average revenue 58% higher than those which did not.

The research generated a wealth of media coverage with the findings reported in over 30 pieces with a total reach of 47 million. The research has featured in articles for City AM, Yahoo Finance and Business Insider.

Employees interviewed


Business leaders interviewed


Pieces of press coverage


Total reach of press coverage

Front cover of The Equity Effect by Henley Business School.