Investing in our people

We want to empower our people to reach their full potential, so we aim to create a diverse, welcoming culture and a safe working environment.

Building thriving communities: Lady working in our distillery

At the core of our business strategy is our commitment to enable employees to ‘be the best they can be’. From the moment they join Diageo, we want employees to feel engaged: passionate about our strategy, connected to our values, and motivated to achieve their potential. We support our employees through clear policies, competitive reward programmes, coaching and development opportunities, and health and wellbeing initiatives.

In empowering our people, we are taking action in four key areas:

Human rights

Everyone has the right to expect their basic human identity and dignity to be fully respected in the workplace. We have outlined our approach in our policies and guidelines, including our Human Rights Policy, and we will continue to demonstrate our commitment through our actions.

As part of our 2020 Sustainability and Responsibility targets, we are committed to acting in accordance with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. As such, we work to ensure that we do not infringe human rights ourselves, and that we are not complicit with others in any abuse of human rights.

  • We do not tolerate discrimination, harassment, bullying or abuse
  • We comply with wage and hour laws
  • We respect our employees' decisions to join or not join a trade union
  • We do not use forced or compulsory labour

We will not work with anyone who does not adopt these same principles.

Health, safety and wellbeing

Creating the conditions for our people to succeed starts with the right to be respected ‒ which includes an expectation of safety in the workplace.

Our Zero Harm programme is designed to ensure that all our people go home safe, every day, and is based on four pillars – prevention, culture, compliance, and capability.

Our safety model, followed at all our sites, is based on leadership, employee engagement, culture development, robust assessment and control of our safety risk, and a commitment to improve safety standards continuously.

We support the delivery of Zero Harm through robust safety management systems, best practice guidance, and a range of health and wellbeing programmes.

Our programme is especially focused on eliminating fatalities from our business, and our Severe and Fatal Incident Prevention programme was specifically designed to identify and eliminate or control the highest risks in our operations.

We aim to have less than one lost-time accident (LTA) per 1,000 employees, with zero fatalities. This ambition includes the transformation of the safety culture and performance at new acquisitions.

When our employees come to work we like to welcome the 'whole person', which means supporting both their physical and their emotional wellbeing. How we do this varies according to local needs and how our employees access their healthcare, but there is one constant theme: ensuring that our employees understand the importance of responsible drinking.

Our health and wellbeing programmes include:

  • Responsible drinking: We want to help ensure that our employees who choose to drink alcohol do so responsibly, as part of a balanced lifestyle. Moreover, as ambassadors for Diageo, our employees help us promote responsible attitudes to drinking, both inside and outside Diageo. Our global Employee Alcohol Policy makes clear to all our people their responsibilities with regard to alcohol, and we promote responsible drinking through our DRINKiQ programme, which equips all our employees to act as ambassadors for responsible drinking.
  • Occupational health: We encourage our employees to lead a healthy and balanced lifestyle. Our local Occupational Health teams have developed a wide range of wellbeing activities to promote the benefits of physical activity to employees. The teams also provide individual health checks and health information.
  • Combating HIV/Aids: Since 2003 our operating companies across Africa have adopted HIV and Aids workplace education and prevention initiatives, and provided treatment for employees and their families through the Live Life employee wellness programme.

Accidents fall as Zero Harm philosophy embraced by new business

When new businesses join Diageo, they also become part of our Zero Harm philosophy and its simple ambition: everyone goes home safe, everyday, everywhere.


A diverse workforce is essential to our success as a multi-national, multi-cultural business.

Our commitment to supporting diversity and inclusion is articulated in our Human Rights Policy, and we measure our employees’ opinions of Diageo as a diverse workplace in our annual Values Survey.

Our targets for 2020 reflect our commitment to diversity in our boardroom and among our employees. In June 2015, 28% of leaders in the business are women, 40% of our Executive leadership are women, and 45% of our Board are women.

Our aim is to foster a culture that provides opportunities for all and celebrates cultural and individual diversity. Where possible, we encourage a flexible approach to working, and emphasise the importance of treating individuals justly and in a non-discriminatory manner throughout the employment relationship, including recruitment, compensation, training, promotion, and transfers.

We support employee resource groups as part of our diversity and inclusion strategy. While each is different, these networks enable employees to support each other, and include global groups such as Spirited Women, our women's network group; Hispanic and Asian heritage networks; and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender groups.

Diageo was the first alcohol beverage company to sign up to the Women's Empowerment Principles, a joint initiative between the UN Women and the UN Global Compact and we continue to be proud signatories.

Skills development, training and entrepreneurship

We want our people to feel excited and engaged about working with us. We are committed to investing in our people’s success, for their benefit and for that of our business.

We strongly believe that skills development and training are vital to business growth as well as making Diageo a great place to work, and where our people feel empowered to be their best. We offer a range of learning initiatives, designed to ensure our people have the support they want to develop. These include the Diageo Academy, our global online elearning and development resource, which emphasises functional learning and allows the vast majority of our employees to access training material in their native language.

Across Diageo we have introduced a consistent talent management approach based on transparent principles and a simple process. As part of this this we complete talent reviews locally across the business each year where we seek to provide rich development feedback and career advice to every employee. The reviews bring to life our talent principles, reinforcing that talent resides in every employee and potential is not something restricted to the few.

Partners for growth

Partners for growth (P4G) is our standard performance management and development framework and is used to set objectives and assess performance for employees. All P4G performance ratings are calibrated against relevant peer groups.

P4G is our holistic approach to performance management with the core components being “Know Me, Focus Me, Value Me”. Open and honest coaching and development conversations between employees and managers that focus on employees’ aspirations and growth, both in and out of the workplace, are central to P4G. This approach is based on our belief that holistic partnerships are more likely to release people’s full potential, driving both personal and business growth. P4G also involves an annual performance and career development review that includes personal objectives linked to overall company strategy.

Employee Values Survey

Through our open channels of communication and engagement we actively encourage regular formal and informal feedback. Our annual Employee Values Survey helps ensure our employees feel they have the opportunity to develop and reach their potential and tracks four learning and development areas.

  • 75% – I receive the training and support I need to do my job effectively
  • 84% – I have stretching objectives agreed with my manager
  • 79% – My manager gives me regular feedback on my performance
  • 75% – My manager works in partnership with me on my personal development.