How to Promote Neurodiversity in the Workplace

Neurodiversity in the workplace

The big question is, “how can you promote neurodiversity in the workplace”? So, if you are an employer looking to hire some genius brains for your business, then reading through this blog could help.

The challenges

Neurodiverse adults remain unidentified and are barely recognised. The reason the being lack of culture in determining which role a particular neurodivergent can serve the best. Unfortunately, yet we have not realised their potential.

What are neurodiverse conditions?

Is neurodiversity a disability?

No, neurodiversity is a broader term representing people who cognitively process differently than what is considered normal. People with Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, Dysgraphia, and other learning differences can be called neurodivergent individuals.

Reforming the hiring process to promote neurodiversity in the workplace

Pondering over it and figuring out benefits it can offer to companies, here I list out the ways companies can mould their hiring process, make it more individual specific rather than having a rigid hiring process, evaluating them all on general skills and through behavioural-based interview:

1. Reveal interview questions prior to the interview

While an interview process designed especially for the neurodiverse adults can be appreciated more, improvising the process, for now, can also do the needful. Since a neurodiverse individual processes differently, the need for a quick response may not allow them a fair deal. Therefore, providing the interviewee with questions prior to the interview could allow them to formulate responses and could be largely helpful to a neurodiverse.

2. Replacing abstract questions with concrete ones

Again, answering abstract questions requires abstract thinking and more auditory processing to figure out what the real question is. Provided, a neurodiverse individual lacks in such skills, having more concrete and to the point questions can be helpful.

3. Allow ample time between each question

Taking a pause before moving to the next set of questions could allow a neurodiverse to figure out answers to the question at his/her own processing speed. Note that lack of a quick response is not necessarily indicative of a lack of knowledge.

4. Axe down questions related to work experience

Given, it’s not very common to have a neurodiverse individual in the workforce, it can be least expected of neurodiverse adults to have prior work experience. Therefore, questions related to work experience among others could add to the pressure of representing themselves in a certain way in order to appear normal and drive a neurodivergent towards anxiety

Time for embracing neurodiversity in the workplace for competitive advantage

It is now essential that we shift from a traditional interview process to a more inclusive interview process evaluating the candidates based on their applied skills, knowledge, techniques, and their ability to complete the essential job functions.

Embracing neurodiversity in the workforce has most recently displayed greater efficiency and therefore improved employee productivity. Neurodiverse individuals are usually inclined to possess specific skills and they happen to be best at it. Having the required skills but not being able to make it through the hiring process has time and again exposed the traditional interview process asking for improvisation.

Fortunately, there has been a growing number of prominent companies trying to reform their hiring process to be able to access the talent of a neurodiverse adult. Hopefully, there will be a time when no extra effort is needed in promoting neurodiversity in the workplace.