Don’t Let A Lack Of Neurodiversity Divert Your Profits To Your Competitors

The idea that a single ‘type’ of employee is required for a business to thrive is totally false. Imagine if you only had one type of way to play football, or one single way to play tennis. Some of the most innovative sports stars of the past century would never have defined our culture in the way they have, if their creativity had been ignored.

Think Differently

From the World Cup to Wimbledon, the tournaments which are being beamed across our screens would be nowhere near as entertaining, without the different creative talents of individual players. In the same way, if your business only seeks one ‘type’ of employee, it will fail to innovate. All entrepreneurs want their businesses to define the future, not to be relics of the past. This is why neurodiversity in business is so crucial. Only by examining problems from different angles, can you find their solutions.

Diversify to future-proof your business

Imagine if an all-male business panel met for a brainstorming session to discuss designs for women’s football boots. The product would be fundamentally flawed as nobody had thought to include a female footballer in the discussions at a serious level. Here is an example of businesses failing to innovate because they have failed to diversify their creative process.

In the same way, employing people with differing approaches to problem solving can allow you to approach these problems in a different, and ultimately more profitable manner. Business can sometimes discriminate against job applicants whose minds work in different ways, particularly those who are autistic.

Are you allowing everyone to flourish?

Imagine you are sitting at your desk working on an innovation which will make your company millions of pounds a year, leaving them miles ahead of their competitors. Let’s say that you are working on an algorithm which will help your company’s marketing team to make a breakthrough in their targeting of prospects and consequent generation of leads. Suddenly, your office feels different. Your colleagues make you anxious. You don’t know how to respond to the office banter, and the noise from the conversation going on behind you is becoming exceedingly irritating. Annoyed by all of this, you go home early. That evening, one of your competitors finally designs and equivalent of the algorithm and proceeds to make huge profits from it. In that instance, your employer would have lost money because they had failed to create a neurodiverse working environment, where their autistic employees felt comfortable enough to relax and perform to their full potential.

Imagine a different scenario, one in which your autistic colleague was able to work in a separate room, so that they could chat to everyone in the office if they felt comfortable doing so, but would also have their own space, where they didn’t have to worry about noise or other people’s perceptions of them, while they were working. Making these small, reasonable adjustments to your office culture allows employees whose minds work slightly differently to flourish. These small changes will create an office where everyone is happy, focused and able to make the breakthroughs you need to take your business to the next level.

Altruist Enterprises are passionate about enabling organisations to create more cohesive offices through effective training. Find out more about our wellbeing at work training, including Mental Health Training For Managers, Mental Health At Work Training For Employees and more.

Katie attended the Peter Jones Enterprise Academy where she set up Altruist in 2013. Since then, Katie has won various awards including Birmingham Mail's Young Achiever of the Year 2017, New Entrepreneurs Foundation 'Future Face of Business' and Entrepreneurial Spark's 'Most Accelerated Business'. She has also been a finalist in nine other award categories and in 2014, Katie was invited to attend the prestigious 'Women of the Year Lunch' in honour of her work raising awareness and reducing the stigma attached to mental health.

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