Neurodiversity. It’s the unseen difference. The hidden partner of the diversity agenda. That’s especially surprising when you consider that around one in every ten people has a neurodivergence of some sort. A wide and varied segment of society that includes the likes of Albert Einstein, Sir Richard Branson, Agatha Christie, Steve Jobs, Steven Spielberg, H.P. Lovecraft, Daryl Hannah, Sir Anthony Hopkins.
In an age when we’re obsessed with what’s “relatable,” we’re often too keen to identify traits and attitudes in others that we recognise in ourselves. We’re trying to be sympathetic, to be tolerant – but the end result can be that we lose sight of the relevance of our differences, which are actually our greatest point of similarity.
We all think differently. Look at the world differently. Express ourselves differently. We react to things in our own unique ways, display certain behavioural characteristics to varying degrees. This is particularly the case when looking at that world through the lens of a neurodivergence. Difference does not imply inferiority. It’s taken us far too long to realise that – but crucially, we are starting to realise it.
Properly supporting people with a neurodivergence, however, is a long way from memorising a Google definition. We need to keep raising awareness and understanding so that theoretical knowledge can be translated into practical applications. That’s why we’re very proud to present our first neurodiversity insight magazine, featuring contributions from our people, our partners and experts in neurodiversity. It includes first-hand accounts of the challenges faced by neurodiverse people in the workplace, the importance of challenging harmful misconceptions about neurological differences in education, and how to support neurodiverse colleagues. We’re really grateful to everyone who contributed, helping to make neurodiversity part of a conversation where it’s spent far too much time on the fringes.
We hope you’ll find our insight useful. If you’d like to talk to us about any of the issues raised or about how to attract and nurture neurodiverse talent in your organisation, please get in touch.