We are working to advance lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender plus (LGBT+) inclusion within Shell and the communities where we work. The experience and landscape for LGBT+ people is changing dramatically. On the one hand, there have been huge leaps forward in recent years, from gay marriage being recognised in over 30 countries, to business leaders and politicians from across the LGBT+ spectrum being out and proud around the world. On the other, there have also been big steps back. They range from a rise in anti-LGBT+ legislation to increasing levels of reported hate crimes. Against this backdrop, building a workplace where LGBT+ staff feel safe and comfortable to be who they are, has never been more important.

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We aim to provide a safe, caring and inclusive environment for LGBT+ staff so that everyone can be themselves and reach their full potential - this is true for all countries where Shell operates. Most of our work around LGBT+ inclusion happens at country level in line with local policies, laws and regulations.  We’ve outlined here some of our key initiatives, commitments and the progress we’ve made.

A strategy shaped by our people

We know the only way we can deliver against our commitment to be one of the world’s most diverse and inclusive originations is to put our staff at the heart of our approach. Our ongoing conversations on LGBT+ equity and inclusion, at all levels of the organisation, shape our action plans:

  • Global LGBT+ forum: A cross-functional global team comprised of LGBT+ colleagues from our employee resource groups (ERGs), Human Resources Business representatives who have a common passion in the advancement of LGBT+ inclusion, the Forum provides a safe space for colleagues around the world to connect with each other and drives the strategic direction for LGBT+ inclusion across Shell globally. The Forum is an agent of meaningful change and its members act as LGBT+ ambassadors, providing expertise and advice to Shell leaders and employee resource groups.  The Global LGBT+ forum is supported by a Steering Committee consisting of senior leaders and colleagues from around the world.  In 2022, we rolled out Global LGBT+ Inclusion Guidelines developed by the Global LGBT+ forum, with input from numerous internal stakeholders and external experts, and are based on best practices, external research and guidance.
  • Employee Resource groups: The role of staff in shaping our strategy extends to the country level. Local leaders sponsor and support our 15 ERGs focussed on LGBT+ inclusion. Our first LGBT+ ERG was in the USA and recently celebrated its 25th birthday, and our most recent ERGs were established in Singapore and Spain.  We also have groups in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, India, the Netherlands, Norway, the Philippines, Poland, South Africa, Thailand and the UK.  Our UK Proud@Shell ERG was recognised as a Top 10 Network Group (ERG) in the British LGBT Awards in 2021.

To learn more about our strategy, read our LGBT+ ambitions, data and progress and our Pillars and Goals and Guiding Principles.

Executive sponsors driving progress

Recognising the importance of senior executive sponsorship to drive progress, our executive sponsors for LGBT+ inclusion are Sinead Gorman, Chief Financial Officer, and Zoë Yujnovich, Upstream Director, both of whom report into our CEO.

The power of staff stories

By sharing and listening to each other’s experiences, we can contribute to a more inclusive world. We asked Shell colleagues around the world to share their inspiring stories and for staff to reflect and act as stronger active allies. Here is Samantha’s story:

Samantha

I prayed every night that I would wake up the next day and I would be female. My life for the first 35 years was an acting job. Now I go to work, I’m me, I’m Samantha.” Samantha is an offshore manager at Shell and has visited nearly every offshore Shell facility, working in remote locations sometimes for months at a time.

Samantha

A role for everyone

Whilst countries may be at different places in their DE&I journeys, no-one has grown-up in a world free from bias. That’s why annual DE&I training is mandatory for everyone at Shell. The training helps ensure colleagues know what’s expected of them, it gives them tools to use every day and guidance on being an ally and intervening in the moment. Whilst it’s only one part of building an inclusive culture, it is an essential one when combined with our other actions to drive meaningful change. And to help turn theory into action, we have asked everyone at Shell to step up in DE&I, to achieve genuine change in who we are, and how we show up – everyday.

Voluntary Self-Identification (Self-ID)

In 2022 we started to roll out Self-ID for employees in our HR system, which includes an option to voluntarily declare sexual orientation as well as gender identity in line with legal and cultural context. This will allow us to better track our progress with data insights, as well as better understand different groups’ experiences, identify strengths that we can continue to build on, and identify opportunities for improvement. By better understanding who we are, we can work towards where we want to be.

Flexible Working

In Shell, we want individuals and teams to perform at their best. A key part of that is being able to balance your work and personal life, which has never been more important.  We have improved our flexible working options to better meet business and people’s changing needs. Our offices will remain essential and continue to have a purpose in community building, driving business performance by fostering affiliation and collaboration and ensuring that employees feel welcomed and valued as they navigate the future.

At the end of 2021, we launched a global “Future of Work” guide to give employees and teams guidance and greater choice in determining together how, when and where they work. Recognizing that in addition to the office there can be a variety of workplaces. The guide combines the lessons, opportunities and trends we learned during the pandemic, enabled by technology, health & wellbeing and inclusive leadership. We’ll continue to learn and evolve the guidance as we continue on our journey.

Fair pay

Pay is an important part of working life. We offer fair and competitive pay so that all our employees are valued, respected and recognised for the work that they do. Our Fair Pay Principles explain how our pay is competitive, free from bias, and provides security.

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Driving inclusion in our communities

Shell is active in external organisations and activities that advance LGBT+ inclusion.

For example, in 2022 Shell signed a letter by the Human Rights Campaign urging public leaders across the US to abandon anti-LGBT+ efforts to write discrimination into law and policy. We pledge our support to external commitments and ambitions  because it increases transparency on what we stand for; we benefit from conversations and working with others on where we can do more; and because our support, as a large and visible global company, can act as a catalyst for others to follow. One of the most well-known standards we’ve pledged our support for is the UN Standards of Conduct for Business, which aims to eliminate discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people.

In 2021, Shell businesses in the 14 countries with LGBT+ employee resource groups celebrated International Coming Out Day. We participate in Pride marches in many countries, including India, the Philippines, the Netherlands and Poland to show support for the local LGBT+ community. We have also launched campaigns aimed at supporting the LGBT+ community in the UK, USA, the Netherlands and Brazil. For example, this year we raised the Shell pecten Progress Flag at our headquarters in London to recognise Shell’s support for the LGBT+ community for Pride month, four retail stations in North America, eight in the UK, and one in Mexico were rebranded and displayed the rainbow flag in 2022 in support of Pride celebrations. We also think LGBT+ representation in our advertising is important to advance LGBT+ inclusion in society. One example is a transgender colleague being featured in an advertising campaign for Shell lubricants in Brazil.

Working with others

  • Workplace Pride

    Workplace Pride

    Shell is a member of Workplace Pride, a non-profit organisation based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. In 2012, we became a co-signatory of the Workplace Pride Declaration of Amsterdam in support of an LGBT+ inclusive workplace.

    Visit Workplace Pride

  • Human Rights Campaign (HRC)

    Human Rights Campaign (HRC)

    We are a corporate partner of the Human Rights Campaign, the largest civil rights organisation working to achieve equality for LGBT+ people in the USA.

    Visit the Human Rights Campaign (HRC)

  • Stonewall

    Stonewall

    Shell is a member of Stonewall, an organisation in the UK that campaigns for the equality of LGBT+ people.

    Visit Stonewall

  • Diversity and Inclusion in Asia Network (DIAN)

    Diversity and Inclusion in Asia Network (DIAN)

    We are a member of the Diversity and Inclusion in Asia Network (DIAN), a leading network for companies and professionals committed to promoting responsible and inclusive business practices in Asia.

    Visit the Diversity and Inclusion in Asia Network (DIAN)

Read more about DE&I at Shell

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

At Shell, we are working to become one of the most diverse, equitable and inclusive organizations' in the world, a place where everyone feels valued and respected and has a strong sense of belonging.

Disability Inclusion and enABLEment

Shell is a place where people with disabilities can excel.

Race & Ethnicity

We are working to address racial inequity and create an inclusive work environment where everyone feels valued.

Gender

Shell is working towards gender equality in our workforce.

Our DE&I awards and recognition

Celebrating our progress as we work to make Shell one of the most diverse and inclusive companies in the world.

Employee Resource Groups

Employee Resource Groups are a place to collaborate, support each other, celebrate successes and work with others to drive Shell's DE&I strategy.

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