Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in personal and business development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Jennifer Sarrett, Founder of Disruptive Inclusion, located in Atlanta, GA, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

Disruptive Inclusion is a diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) consultancy that provides bespoke DEIB research, strategy, and services that meet clients where they are in their DEIB journey. We rely on evidence-based practice and direction to ensure the services we provide for your organization best fit your team culture and will effectively meet your DEIB goals.

We are prepared to engage in a detailed discovery process that uses qualitative and quantitative research to determine your team's needs and then use this information to develop a detailed plan for your organization. Additionally, we are prepared to provide workshops, training, and mentoring to educate and inform your leaders and team members on the foundational concepts of DEIB so your organization can proceed with dynamic, sustainable practices.

Tell us about yourself

I have been working in inclusion and equity since I entered my Ph.D. program at Emory University in 2008. There, I was studying the role of culture in autism and was introduced to the field of disability studies, which is an area that studies the history, culture, and experience of disability. This work introduced me to major concepts in DEIB, such as intersectionality, unconscious bias, and structural violence, as they relate not only to disability but also to race, gender, sexuality, class, and more.

After getting my Ph.D. in 2014, I stayed on at Emory to teach at the new Center for the Study of Human Health. In the classes I designed and taught, DEIB was a central theme. I also began to develop and provide training on DEIB topics across campus to professionals and educators in the college, the medical school, public health, and the ethics center. I realized my passion for this work and its potential for positive community impact. I began consulting with Jennifer Brown Consulting in 2021 and started Disruptive Inclusion. I left academia at the end of 2021 to pursue this work full time and have found it rewarding and fulfilling.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

I am developing an approach to DEIB that is inspired by a disability concept, Universal Design. This concept was initially an architectural concept that aimed to create spaces and places that were as accessible as possible to as many people as possible without introducing new barriers to anyone. A great example of Universal Design is curb cuts. These were initially implemented for people who use wheelchairs but are beneficial to people on scooters, strollers or rolling suitcases, and more. And they increase access for all these people without introducing challenges to anyone. I think good DEIB can create 'curb cuts' in our organizational environments by creating workplace cultures and policies that predict needs and allow for flexibility within the structure to enable workers to enjoy a sense of comfort and belonging.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Getting new clients! In today's world, there are so many ways people find consultants and so many ways we are missed. Marketing my strategy and services to those who are excited and ready to engage in good DEIB is challenging but one that I approach through content creation and community education.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Have a well-defined business plan, but make sure to recognize that it will likely diverge somewhat.
  2. Have ambitious goals! If your goals are not high enough, you may reach them too early and then have nowhere to go.
  3. Live your values and make sure your organization also reflects your values.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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