There is no one-size fits all Approach to Neurodiversity
There is no ‘one-size fits-all’ approach to recruiting and managing neurodiverse candidates, which can seem daunting when considering how to recruit, manage and support neurodiverse staff. Yet some of the most important and effective things an employer can do are also simple and not too costly. The Clear Company research suggests that the price of average reasonable adjustments far outweigh the cost of having to recruit and train a new employee, costing on average £30.
“The best thing an employer can do is to simply ask how they can help neurodiverse people to work at their best. If an employee is open to making their condition known, then an employer should ask what it is they need,” says Cheryl Winter, director of In Work Support at Genius Within, where she oversees neurodiverse workplace coaching.
This isn’t to say you need to rescue people, says Winter. “Their condition can then turn into a crutch, a reason not to attempt doing things. An employer can make them feel disabled by their condition, so it is a fine balance.”
Another point to consider is that candidates or current employees may not want to declare a condition for fear of being treated differently. A culture of openness, cooperation and understanding can go some way to alleviating such concerns. For an organisation to attain such a culture requires educating its workforce and instilling such values in its leadership.
Many companies invest in management and leadership training programmes as part of their existing employee development schemes, but Winter is concerned that currently little if any time is devoted to understanding neurodiversity in these programmes. “It needs to be built into their HR and management processes, if it is, organisations will get a lot further.”
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