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What can the tech industry do to better accommodate neurodiversity?

jess profile image Jess Lee (she/her) ・1 min read

DEV is in the process of launching a podcast and we'd love for you to be involved! We're recording the episodes in advance, and this week we'd like to know:

What can the tech industry do to better accommodate neurodiversity?

If you'd like to participate, please:

  • Call our Google Voice at at +1 (929)500-1513 and leave a message 📞
  • Send a voice memo to pod@dev.to 🎙
  • OR, if you don't want your voice recorded...just leave a comment here and we'll read your response aloud for you 🗣

Thank you!

Discussion

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I think increasing flexibility and allowing for increased autonomy accommodates neurodiversity well. For example, flexibility in what time a person chooses to work or how they work (remotely or in office). Giving a person to choose what works best for them allows them to figure out what routine or work style promotes the most productivity.

Another thing to accommodate neurodiversity is having multiple avenues of communication. Some people understand written text faster than when the same communication is given verbally, and vice versa. So opting for all avenues of communication, when reasonable, helps all kinds of people be accommodated.

 

By compartmentalizing work into units that don't require human interaction. How many amazing programmers do you know that do not know how to interact with people? Or whose lack of social abilities prevent them from fitting the cultural fit of a company or who are able to build a career over the long term. By dehumanizing the work and providing a set of goals, a time line and requirements and letting neurodiverse individuals work on them, almost anonymously, we would gain access to a wealth of specialized skills, and they would gain the benefit of getting paid, even though they wouldn't be people you would want to see in the office everyday.

 

I think first of all education. My company does seminars on the topic so that more and more people are aware of, first of all, what it means. Gotta start somewhere!

 

Not requiring people to call in for support is a big one; a lot of neurodiversity expresses itself in the form of being uncomfortable with having to, for example, call a phone number and speak extemporaneously.

 

Ah, this is a big topic for me! I will definitely leave a message.

 

Hi there! We are recording the episode this afternoon at 3pm ET, so if you are able to send in that message before then, we would love to include you!