Neurodiversity is a certainly a topic that can mean a lot for every company. However, there is still far too little focus on it. I have recently attended a really interesting talk of Peter Ampe, Creative Director at FamousGrey, on how to use neurodiversity as the key to change. In his words:
“I don’t see this as a disability but as this ability. To look at the world in a different way than other people.” – Peter Ampe
What is neurodiversity
We’re all familiar with diversity. But what is neurodiversity actually?
First of all neurodiversity means that there are differences between people’s brains and therefore different ways of thinking and learning. The standard brain does not exist. Just as there is no standard animal, no standard flower, and certainly no standard human, there is no standard brain. So people with neurodiversity are people whose brains are wired in a different way.
4 different types of neurodiversity:
- ASS (autism): these are people who like to be introvert, they don’t like going out in big groups, because they prefer to be on their own.
- ADHD: these are people who can’t sit still, their brain reacts to different impulses.
- Dyslexia: these are people who can’t read properly (this is the most stigmatizing disorder).
- OCD (obsessive compulsive behavior): these are people with uncontrollable, reoccurring thoughts (obsessions) and/or behaviors (compulsions). He or she feels the urge to repeat over and over again.
What can it mean for companies?
Now we live in times where we are all looking for the new normal, but also for the next new normal. How society has changed really forces us to change.
We can find multiple new aspects in our lives, like:
- Company policies: working from the office, from home, from a hotel, …
- Ways of payment: subscriptions for food
How can neurodiversity help?
Neurodiversity is always seen as the key to change by psychologists. When everyone is normal, you need people with different brains to procure change.
How can we leverage the talent of all neurodiverse minds with respect to their needs? We should always take these two things into account:
- Embrace their strengths
- Compensate for their weaknesses
By surrounding those people with the right colleagues & creating the right culture in your company.
Here is an example for people with ASS:
- Their strengths: detail, different logic, systemisers
- Surround those people with the folowing colleagues: social, supportive, outward thinking
- Create the right culture for them: no obligations, no open office, work from home
For every type of neurodiversity, you can match the strengths with the right colleagues and right culture.
If you form the best constellations of neurodiverse, people who cover each other’s weaknesses and applaud each other’s strengths will help your company forward. Because they might be 10% different, but they can be 100% special for your company.
About the author
This article is written by Justien Thomas, an enthusiastic Marketing Consultant at 4P square. She is interested in e-commerce, email marketing, brand management, communication. Justien is autonomous, ambitious, eager-to-learn and a responsible go-getter who is not afraid to take on a new challenge. She loves to help companies reaching their marketing goals.
Want to know more about Justien? Feel free to start a conversation with her on LinkedIn.