Neurodiversity in the Workforce: Becca Chambers Of Alludo On Why It’s Important To Include Neurodiverse Employees & How To Make Your Workplace More Neuro-Inclusive

An Interview With Eric Pines

Eric L. Pines
Authority Magazine
14 min readJul 7, 2023


Focus on outcomes instead of inputs. Release control over where, when, and how people do their jobs, and instead, focus on their deliverables. Making sure your employees jiggle a computer mouse for 9 hours per day doesn’t get you where you want to go. The process shouldn’t be what matters — it’s the outcomes that matter.

Research suggests that up to 15–20% of the U.S. population is neurodivergent. There has been a slow but vitally important rise in companies embracing neurodiversity. How can companies support neurodiversity in the workplace? What are some benefits of including neurodiverse employees? To address these questions, we are talking to successful business leaders who can share stories and insights from their experience about “Neurodiversity in the Workforce: Companies Including Neurodiverse Employees”. As a part of this series, we had the pleasure of interviewing Becca Chambers.

Becca Chambers is SVP of Global Brand and Communications at Alludo, the parent company for B2B and B2C software brands like Parallels, WinZip, MindManager, CorelDRAW, and others. Becca is an award-winning brand expert and thought leader with deep expertise in cybersecurity and B2B technologies. She believes her neurodivergence has helped fuel her success and is committed to destigmatizing neurodiversity in the workplace and beyond.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you ended up where you are?

I’ve worked in communications for nearly two decades and have spent much of my career on the brand and communications side of the cybersecurity space, though I’ve worn pretty much every communications hat at some point in my career. Branding has always been a passion of mine — I chose to focus on branding while in graduate school, and have since relished every opportunity I’ve had to help companies discover and reimagine their brands and share those brands with the world. I realized early in my career that if I were interested and passionate about what I was working on, I’d produce results that far exceeded expectations, so I followed my passions. I’ve been fortunate to oversee a number of corporate rebranding efforts and build and lead incredible teams of talented people. Most recently, I joined Alludo (then Corel) in 2021 after having a series of inspiring conversation with our CEO, Christa Quarles. We promptly engaged in a massive rebranding campaign that I’m really proud of.

You are a successful leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?

  1. I’m known for coming up with creative, innovative solutions to complex problems. It’s a cliché to say that you “think outside the box,” but in my case, it’s more like, “imagine the box was never there.” I can step out of ruts and status quos and come up with ideas that may not have occurred to others. With an ability to zoom out and see the 30,000-foot view of an organization or project, I challenge norms and think creatively while also seeing how all the pieces fit together. I think it’s common to either be a high-level, big-picture visionary or a detail-oriented strategist, but I’m fortunate to be able to do both — and to integrate the two.
  2. I’m authentic and empathetic. Part of what makes me a successful leader is my ability to connect with people on a personal level. I regularly get feedback that I make people feel comfortable being themselves — which I take as the ultimate compliment, because I know how important it is to be able to show up as your authentic self. I encourage my teams to ask questions and challenge me, and I am transparent and honest in all my communications with my teams, so we have a relationship built on trust. Part of why I am so passionate about destigmatizing neurodiversity is because I want more neurodivergent people to be able to show up as their authentic selves, without feeling the need to “mask” to fit in.
  3. I’m very clear-headed in a crisis. This is a common characteristic of people with ADHD like me. I joke that I struggle to finish a load of laundry in a reasonable amount of time, but if there’s an urgent crisis scenario — whether that’s a high-stakes issue at work or a natural disaster or accident — I’ll be the calmest and most clear-headed person there. I can’t explain it, but I’m grateful for it — and it has served me well many times throughout my life and career, especially when it comes to crisis communications and change management.

Can you share a story about one of your greatest work-related struggles? Can you share what you did to overcome it?

For my entire childhood and a portion of my adult life, I thought something was very wrong with me. I kept hearing the same feedback over and over: Becca is so smart; she’d be incredibly successful if only she’d…focus / settle down / apply herself / pay attention / stop moving / stop talking / stop being herself. I spent a lot of time worrying about “fixing” that feedback to appear more buttoned up in the workplace and fit the status quo.

I constantly wondered why things seemed to come so easily for other people, while every day was a struggle in some way for me. It wasn’t until I was diagnosed with ADHD as an adult that I gained an understanding of the root of my struggles and could start to find a path that better suited my style of learning/working. I was able to truly overcome those struggles when I embraced and leaned into my neurodivergence, seeing it for the unique strengths it gave me. I realized I had spent decades trying to fit the wrong mold. I could create my own mold and be even more successful than trying to be like everyone else.

I once had an influential manager advocate for me to another colleague. She said, “Becca looks like she’s not paying attention, but her mind is going a million miles a minute and she’s already three steps ahead of the rest of us.” That stuck with me. She was right. My version of process and productivity might look different from someone else’s, but it’s no less powerful. In many ways, it’s more powerful, and I give a lot of credit to my ADHD traits for my success.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

I feel incredibly fortunate to have been at the helm of a massive, top-to-bottom rebranding campaign that morphed Corel into Alludo. It was an amazing responsibility to honor the legacy of a 35-year-old company while giving it a whole new name, look, feel, and voice that resonates with employees, partners, and customers. We’ve officially launched the new brand but are still infusing it as we go — and that’s a major focus for me. A big part of this new brand is the idea of “Work3,” which is what we call the future of work. Work3 is dismantling generations of notions about what work ‘should’ look and feel like, focusing on outputs instead of inputs, and giving true freedom to where, when, and how you work. I’m really passionate about that, and that’s a lot of what we’re doing right now.

As part of our Work3 initiative, we’ve been looking at the experience of neurodivergent people at work to understand how the future of work will positively or negative impact their way of working. We conducted a global survey of neurodivergent workers that confirmed the workplace isn’t set up correctly for neurodivergent people, and that remote work allows for more of the accommodations that neurodivergent people need to do their best work. It’s not only a passion project for me, but it has also been a very successful campaign that seems to resonate with folks in unexpected ways. It has been really gratifying to see more conversations around neurodiversity in the workplace as a result.

Fantastic. Let’s now shift to our discussion about neurodiversity in the workforce. Can you tell our readers a bit about your experience working with initiatives to include neurodiverse employees? Can you share a story with us?

I’m thrilled to be working, for the first time, at a company that not only accepts neurodiversity, but actively embraces and celebrates it. I received so much support when I expressed an interest in being vocal about neurodiversity and have written extensively on the topic. I’m proud to have my voice being heard in both the neurodiverse community and the neurotypical community, using both personal and corporate channels to further the conversation. As I mentioned earlier, the neurodiversity survey we conducted has garnered a lot of interest and we have used it to have discussions both internally within Alludo, and externally, where we’re seeing prospective employees cite our focus on neurodiversity as part of why they want to join our company.

As part of our internal advocacy, I cofounded and am the executive sponsor of an Employee Resource Group (ERG) at Alludo focused on neurodiversity, and that has been a very rewarding experience. Not only is it an active and engaged group, but it has also allowed me to have more candid conversations with our neurodivergent employees about how we can better support each other, and how our company can better support us, in the workplace.

This may be obvious to you, but it will be helpful to spell this out. Can you articulate to our readers a few reasons why it is so important for a business or organization to have an inclusive work culture?

Neurodiversity is diversity. Full stop. Diversity adds vibrance and fosters innovation and is an antidote to groupthink. Research shows time and again that more diverse companies perform better, and that includes diversity of thought, background, experience, identity, and neural processes. All these differences add value.

A lot of companies say that they embrace diversity as a company, but you have to walk the walk. That means creating safe spaces and ensuring that members of diverse communities are part of the conversation so they’re being heard and spoken with, not simply spoken about. It’s also why seeing and hearing from other people who look / think / act differently from you is important. Representation helps foster belonging and allows more people to add their voice to the conversation.

Embracing diversity also means offering flexibility in where, how, and when people work. It means re-evaluating how you measure performance. I can’t speak for the experience of other diverse communities, but I know that the traditional work landscape is chock full of barriers that force people like me to mask our differences and struggle unnecessarily. It can dilute our ability to contribute and be productive, leaving massive untapped potential on the table. If we can create environments that foster more inclusivity, encourage people to show up to work as their authentic selves, and reduce the barriers to doing their best work, we’ll see teams and organizations flourish.

Can you share a few examples of ideas that were implemented at your workplace to help include neurodiverse employees? Can you share with us how the work culture was affected as a result?

Again, our new Employee Resource Group (ERG) focused on neurodiversity is a major step. It has been so heartening to see how vulnerable and open people have been in that group, and I’ve heard over and over that people love having that safe space. I’m so glad that so many allies have participated, too.

In addition, I think that simply having the topic spoken and written about so frequently has shifted the culture. Alludo is now known, internally and externally, as a workplace that embraces and advocates for neurodiversity. I’ve started hearing from our People Team that potential employee candidates — including those at the Executive Leadership Team level — were attracted to Alludo because of our vocal stance on neurodiversity, whether or not they identify as neurodivergent.

I’ve also felt a lot of personal gratification in the fact that employees tell me how much our internal and external advocacy means to them because it makes them feel like they can just show up as they are, unmasking and being their authentic selves. This was my goal when I started talking about my own neurodivergent experience — I wanted to help others feel like they could be their whole selves, too.

Our brand values at Alludo are built around authenticity, flexibility, and freedom — these things together mean that our company is naturally well-suited to meet some of the needs of the neurodivergent community, because we embrace the fact that different people work differently. Additionally, as a company we have shifted toward a fully remote work environment, which allows for additional accommodations and flexibility.

What are some of the challenges or obstacles to including neurodivergent employees? What needs to be done to address those obstacles?

The challenge that underpins many of the issues neurodivergent employees face is simply the lack of awareness and understanding surrounding neurodiversity. And our struggles start from day one: hiring. Many neurodivergent people simply don’t interview well, for a variety of reasons, even though they might be by far the best fit for the role. I relate to this personally. I used to dread interviews because I know I didn’t represent myself accurately for roles I was more than qualified for. I don’t like to make eye contact, I fidget with my hands, I sometimes take long pauses to collect my thoughts — things that make me seem “weird” and may preclude me from being viewed as the best fit for a role simply because of an interviewer’s bias or lack of understanding.

Another major barrier to including neurodivergent employees is simply that the traditional workspace is built for the neurotypical majority. The butts-in-seats, heads-down, box-ticking mentality is genuinely awful for many neurodivergent people. (And while I’ve never been neurotypical, I can’t imagine that it’s a very innovation-fostering environment for them, either!) Sensory overload is an issue for many of us, and the bright lights, constant sounds and movement, unpredictable temperature, and social interactions are all enough to inhibit our ability to do good work. It’s amazing how much simple accommodations in our work environment can positively impact our productivity and wellness.

Choice, freedom, and flexibility go SO far when it comes to including neurodivergent employees. Here’s a blog we recently wrote on exactly this topic. Recognize that you’re hiring adults whom you’re trusting to do their jobs amazingly well. You shouldn’t have to micromanage how, where, or when they do the work. Give them the right tools and the space to thrive, and they will. It’s not about the process, it’s about the outcomes. Let your neurodivergent employees get things done the way that works best for their style of thinking, not the way you might do it. Neurodivergent folks tend to be perfectionists, so there’s a good chance you’ll end up with something great. If you can’t trust them to do that, why are you hiring them?

And again, being vocal about embracing and celebrating neurodiversity is important. As a global work landscape, we have a very long way to go when it comes to destigmatizing neurodiversity, but I’d like to think that we’re on the right path. No one should have to mask who they are. (Masking is a term used to describe the attempt to present as neurotypical in order to be accepted.)

This is the main question of our interview. Can you please share five best practices that can make a business place feel more welcoming and inclusive of people who are neurodivergent?

1 . Focus on outcomes instead of inputs. Release control over where, when, and how people do their jobs, and instead, focus on their deliverables. Making sure your employees jiggle a computer mouse for 9 hours per day doesn’t get you where you want to go. The process shouldn’t be what matters — it’s the outcomes that matter.

2 . Consider an Employee Resource Group for neurodivergent employees and their allies. Create a safe place for people to unmask and be their authentic selves with other people like them to ask questions and share best practices.

3 . Ensure that your entire talent pipeline takes neurodiversity into account. That means offering flexibility in the recruiting, interviewing, and onboarding processes. Tell your prospective employees that you embrace neurodiversity in the workplace.

4 . Understand that inclusive practices that support neurodivergent people doesn’t mean lowering your standards. That’s stigmatization. You should hire the right people for the right roles and keep your standards sky-high when it comes to how they deliver. A flexible workplace is not one with low standards. It’s one that helps people perform at their best.

5 . Talk about it and tell your teams that you embrace neurodiversity. Identify internal advocates for neurodiversity and give them a voice, a platform, and your unequivocal support. Perhaps there’s someone on your leadership team who is neurodivergent, or someone who is a parent or partner of someone who is neurodivergent. Make it clear that you are going to walk the walk when it comes to embracing neurodiversity. People can’t be authentic if they believe they won’t be safe.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share a story about how that was relevant in your own life?

It’s “No mud, no lotus.” It’s a quote (and book title) from the brilliant Thich Nhat Hanh about “the art of transforming suffering.” It is exactly what it sounds like: that you have to go through all the s#!t to get to the flower. It’s definitely a life motto for me, and I think it applies to my journey with neurodiversity, too. There is no flower without the mud — something I remind myself of often when facing adversity.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)

The movement I want to inspire: rebranding neurodiversity. Branding is the core focus of my profession, and I’m also neurodivergent and the parent of a neurodivergent child. I want my son, who is dyslexic, to grow up in a world where he views his neurodivergence as a gift and a potential competitive advantage — not a barrier or source of shame. I want him to love and embrace who he is, and not have to hide it. And I want that for everyone.

Let’s be clear: when it comes to the workplace, embracing neurodiversity doesn’t simply have to be an act of altruism. It is a competitive advantage. It’s simply good business. (We also recently wrote about the strengths neurodivergent people bring to the workplace!)

How can our readers further follow your work online?

I’m active on LinkedIn (let’s connect!) and I also have a site at, I also contribute regularly to Alludo’s blog.

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success and good health!

About the Interviewer: Eric L. Pines is a nationally recognized federal employment lawyer, mediator, and attorney business coach. He represents federal employees and acts as in-house counsel for over fifty thousand federal employees through his work as a federal employee labor union representative. A formal federal employee himself, Mr. Pines began his federal employment law career as in-house counsel for AFGE Local 1923 which is in Social Security Administration’s headquarters and is the largest federal union local in the world. He presently serves as AFGE 1923’s Chief Counsel as well as in-house counsel for all FEMA bargaining unit employees and numerous Department of Defense and Veteran Affairs unions.

While he and his firm specialize in representing federal employees from all federal agencies and in reference to virtually all federal employee matters, his firm has placed special attention on representing Veteran Affairs doctors and nurses hired under the authority of Title. He and his firm have a particular passion in representing disabled federal employees with their requests for medical and religious reasonable accommodations when those accommodations are warranted under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (ADA). He also represents them with their requests for Federal Employee Disability Retirement (OPM) when an accommodation would not be possible.

Mr. Pines has also served as a mediator for numerous federal agencies including serving a year as the Library of Congress’ in-house EEO Mediator. He has also served as an expert witness in federal court for federal employee matters. He has also worked as an EEO technical writer drafting hundreds of Final Agency Decisions for the federal sector.

Mr. Pines’ firm is headquartered in Houston, Texas and has offices in Baltimore, Maryland and Atlanta, Georgia. His first passion is his wife and five children. He plays classical and rock guitar and enjoys playing ice hockey, running, and biking. Please visit his websites at and He can also be reached at



Eric L. Pines
Authority Magazine

Eric L. Pines is a nationally recognized federal employment lawyer, mediator, and attorney business coach