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Let’s start off on the right foot 

  "The time to stop talking is when the other person nods his head affirmatively, but says nothing." – Henry S. Haskins 

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The skinny 

When thinking outside the box, a little inclusivity goes a long way.  

Neurodivergent 
Nope, not the next publication in Veronica Roth’s wildly popular dystopian series. Neurodivergence is an umbrella term for anyone who experiences any difference from what is considered typical neurological function. Most notably those on the autism spectrum, it also includes people who are dyslexic, have dyspraxia, or ADHD. 

22  

The percentage of autistic adults who have any kind of employment. As adults with autism achieve post-secondary education in greater numbers, employers clearly need to do more to hire autistic workers into fulfilling positions—full time, part time, paid internships. Let’s get creative!    

One-size-fits-none. 

From portraying autistic characters that range from outstanding genius, able to reliably recall the smallest of details, to severely intellectually disabled or 100% nonverbal, popular media doesn’t help matters. It’s important for employers to remember that each worker’s experience is totally unique.  

Hope no one notices.  

Whether they’ve been promoted, transferred, or just clocked in for orientation, it can be difficult sometimes for employees to fit in at work. Employees on the spectrum might experience even greater difficulty—sensitivity to certain lights or sounds, differences in reading people, fluctuations in their energy levels, or processing information differently all can create an extra barrier to belonging.  

Accommodation station.  

Noise-cancelling headphones are an obvious offering, but it’s easier than you think (and often dually beneficial) to accommodate autistic professionals on a deeper level. Making personal introductions can help fast-track work friendships. Plus, providing meeting agendas in advance ensures both neurodivergent employees and their leaders are walking in with all the necessary details to contribute their fullest.  

86  

The percentage of employers that rated employees with neurodiverse conditions as good or very good in all of these four areas: dependability, motivation, engagement, and peer integration. When care is taken to place autistic employees in positions that align with their natural strengths and interests, extra accommodations might start to look like an antidote.  

Wait, go back.  

That’s an incredible number. Neurotypical employees can take a cue. It’s true, people on the autism spectrum have a variety of exceptional skills that are highly valued by employers. And the icing on top: many managers of neurodiverse professionals have said it helped them embrace the individual talents of everyone on their team. 

  

Date with data: 51% of workers on the spectrum have skills higher than what their job requires.   

Further reading: Does the Key to Talent Lie in Untapped Neurodiversity?


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The skinny 

  Nonverbal communication is critical to career success. 

  

You’re speaking my language.  

When two people click, whether in an interview, lunch with the in-laws, or business meeting, much of that connection is rooted in their body language. If you find the person across the table mirroring you, that’s a sign there’s good vibes.  

Flip the script.  

Next time you wish there was a little more magic in your interaction, try subtly mirroring their stance and gestures and see what happens. Remember, it’s science if you write it down.  

One man’s treasure.  

While things like checking your phone and interrupting others are almost universally considered off-putting, the appropriateness of other behaviors like leaning in, eye contact, and ear-to-ear smiles depend a lot on context and personal preference.  

That’s not helpful. 

It’s not, sorry. Achieving peak body language is a nebulous mixture of being totally sincere without being overbearing— excessive fidgeting or uproarious laughter, for example. The best advice is to practice, so things like keeping an open stance and natural eye contact come a little easier next time you’re with important people. 

Did I do that?  

It’s never on purpose. And unluckily, sometimes it’s never brought to their attention. But every so often there’s a colleague who just doesn’t know quite how they come across to everyone else.  

Can’t think of someone? 

 Uh-oh, it might be you... Managers especially need to pay more attention to their overall impression, since they’re often in situations with an extra level of power dynamics, and in roles that must oversee and motivate employees.  

They won’t remember what you say.  

The nitty-gritty fades into the background and people remember how someone makes them feel. At the end of the day, genuine personalities and sincere actions typically do the heavy lifting in evoking positive body language. 

Double date: 11 Remarkable Workplace Communication Statistics to Know in 2022   

For you: 5 Signs You're Making Somone Uncomfortable and What To Do About It  

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Now a break from the news…

What to Watch in April 

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Compliance Corner

ATTN: San Francisco 

  Here’s something to…  


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Make Your Mark    

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Rae's Roundup - what we're reading

How 12 Companies are Boosting Their DEI