BY THE NUMBERS
Companies Fail to Follow Through on DEI
Experienced Leaders Have Become More Critical of Their Organization’s DEI Efforts
In the past several years, the number of companies pledging to make serious commitments to DEI rose rapidly. However, our survey data show that few companies have made serious headway against their pledge.
Compared to our survey in 2020, we’ve seen an average 18% decrease in the number of leaders who endorse their company’s overall DEI efforts.
Across the board, leaders are less optimistic about their organization’s progress in key DEI practices than they were two years earlier.
One possible explanation is that leaders’ expectations of DEI programs have risen in recent years. However, there’s also evidence that companies may be quietly backing away from their DEI commitments amid increasing economic and labor challenges.
In 2020, only 15% of companies did not have a DEI program. That number has grown to 20% in our current forecast.
In the previous finding, we noted that many organizations have seen a drop-off in the number of women leaders since 2020, especially among poor-performing companies. Additionally, there has been a decrease in the number of organizations that are using DEI programs. In 2020, only 15% of companies did not have a DEI program. That number has grown to 20% in our current forecast.
Another clue behind the drop in scores may lie in generational divides. Surprisingly, younger leaders under 35 were the most optimistic about their organization’s commitment to DEI. However, those in the 46–55 age range expressed the most disappointment in their company’s DEI efforts. This may be an indicator that these “Gen X”' leaders are frustrated with the slow progress they’ve seen over time, and may be feeling overlooked as many programs target younger workers.
Over the past 2 years, there has been an 18% decrease in the number of leaders who endorse their company's overall DEI efforts