Sunday, October 11, 2009

Auties: Successful in the workplace?

I just came across this article: Thorkil Sonne: Recruit Autistics (thanks, computerlove at WrongPlanet!) and it really made my day. In the article, Sonne, who runs an IT company in Denmark, makes it a point to hire mostly people on the autism spectrum, because of their attention to detail, fantastic memory, and amazing concentration ability. This company is really working out well for him, because, as stated in the article, "Once on the job, the consultants stay focused beyond the point when most minds go numb. As a result, they make far fewer mistakes."

This seems like such a wonderful work model because it not only breaks conventions, but it opens up jobs for individuals previously thought to be "unhire-able". The only place where I would think a person with Autism may not be suitable for working is in a highly social environment, where office drama is bound to happen and charisma is necessary every step of the way. In the context of work, people should be judged not by their Type A personality (or lack thereof) or by their ability to follow social rules; they should be judged by their ability to work, and how well they work. Get what I'm saying?

Hopefully, as acceptance of autism continues to progress, more companies will start using a similar model. It will put away certain conventions and open up the door to new ones, possibly changing the standard of what the typical workplace environment will be. Isn't that exciting? Autism isn't an epidemic of sorts: we're real people who also need to make a living, and the fact that companies are starting to pay attention to this is wonderful on both our behalf and theirs. Let's keep it coming!!!

No comments:

Powered by WebRing.