Learning to be proud(er)

Poppy talks about our team EDI and what it means to her

“Why is EDI in the workplace important?” It’s a question I’ve never had to consider. Because I know why it matters. At least, I know why it matters to me.

But having the privilege of being the equity, diversity and inclusion lead at Fluid has not only encouraged me to look outwardly at why it matters to other people, but it’s helped me to understand what a safe and inclusive workplace truly looks like for everyone. And this Pride Month has been a fantastic opportunity for us to take a step back and look at what we’ve achieved so far at Fluid.

To say that everyone who is openly a part of the LGBTQ+ community has been through the same struggles would be false. But we have all had a shared experience which binds us together.

It’s the feeling of discomfort or slight nervousness when meeting new people, knowing that before long it’ll be time to ‘come out’ yet again. It’s walking into a room, a bar, a shopping centre, and questioning how open you can be about your identity. Is it safe to hold my partner's hand? Will I get any funny looks because of the clothes I’m wearing? Do I need to lie about who I am? Time and time again, you’re a foreigner in your own home. 

And I can’t speak for everyone and their experiences here. But listening to the stories of those around me has helped me to realise that at some point in time, we’ve all received the same looks and heard the same comments. 

Nevertheless, the second you walk through the doors of your workplace, that should all disappear. Because an inclusive workplace should feel like home. 

Which is why we made a promise back in November 2022. A promise to be more open and honest about who we are, so that our Fluid community could be more open and honest about who they were too.

For me Fluid has always been fully inclusive by nature. It's part of our values. It's ingrained in our culture. It has just been part of our fabric from the very beginning. However we needed to ensure we vocalised that, both internally and externally. So that anyone outside of Fluid has a clear picture of exactly how inclusive and safe a workplace Fluid is.

- Col, EDI team member

We’ve made some changes in the last few years. But I can easily say that I’m most proud of the incredible group of people who have come together to form our new(ish) EDI team at Fluid. 

Fluid’s EDI team is working hard to make Fluid the best place it can be for equality, diversity and inclusion. They’ve been through a day of training, and are using what they’ve learned to start conversations, create safe spaces, and provide a welcoming environment for every person who walks through our doors.

An inclusive workspace is so important because there is no excuse for one not to be. If a workspace is inclusive, that's when you'll see the best of everyone in and out of work and it's important that this is the case as it can affect people physically and mentally. Fluid would not thrive the way it does without being inclusive, everyone has a voice and because of this, it makes it a place where people are happy to be.

- Bec, EDI team member

And inclusive means safe for all. No matter your race, gender, religion, ability or sexuality. It matters.

An inclusive workplace means that I have been able to grow and flourish in my first full-time role in a supportive environment. I know of many people my age, in new roles, who are unable to speak up, share their creativity and feel free in their workplace due to not having this agreed sense of equality.

- Liv B, EDI team member

Because a safe space is a community. A community is a home. A home is somewhere you can be open and honest about who you are. It’s comfortable. It’s welcoming. And in a creative industry like ours, it’s the magic which lets us all thrive.

Since founding Fluid Ideas almost 21 years ago, Phil has naturally been the pioneering force in creating a welcoming, inclusive and positive environment for both employees and clients. And it’s his original vision which has led us to where we are today.

Since founding Fluid Ideas in 2003, my vision has been to establish more than just a workplace... to create a true sanctuary that fosters a sense of belonging and acceptance.

Over the years, as our team has expanded, we've taken significant strides to cultivate an environment where each individual, regardless of their background, feels valued and integral to our collective mission. We proudly refer to ourselves as 'Fluiders', a term that encapsulates our unity and shared commitment to inclusivity. Our EDI culture is something I hold in high esteem because it reflects our dedication not only to the well-being of our team but also to the principles of respect and empathy that guide us. 

As we look to the future, I am committed to advancing this culture, ensuring that it remains a cornerstone of our identity at Fluid Ideas. This ongoing commitment to EDI is fundamental in helping us adapt and thrive in an ever-changing business landscape, continually enriching our community and the creative solutions we offer.

- Phil, Founder and Joint MD

I know I’d like to say a big thank you to Phil, Ed and absolutely every person at Fluid Ideas, who have collectively created a safe space for everyone to enjoy. So thank you.

Visit our Fluid Pride page