Through my work as an executive sponsor of SAP’s Autism Inclusion Network, I’ve witnessed firsthand the hunger for opportunities that many skilled autistic workers carry..
As an organization that has invested in the area of neurodiversity for many years now and seen tremendous outcomes from our Autism at Work program, SAP is often approached by organizations seeking insights and resources as inspiration to start, enhance, or grow their own autism inclusion programs. The state of innovation today paints a clear picture as to why this demand has increased.
Today’s world demands a sense of disruption. The ability to disrupt ourselves. The capability to imagine and challenge the status quo. When organizations provide a tangible (and psychological) safety net for workers to be themselves, and not have to pretend or blend in, then the result is more innovation and incredible value. The challenges brought about by the current global pandemic have only accelerated these trends and augmented the need for greater neurodiversity.
SAP Purpose Network Live: SAP Autism at Work Series
Based on popular demand for actionable insights organizations can take in this effort, SAP recently ran a 5-part series, “SAP Autism at Work: Accelerating Workforce Inclusion Webcast Series presented by SAP Purpose Network Live” shedding light on how to enhance an organization’s culture, create connections with a deep, diverse yet underutilized talent pool, and encourage pre-conceived perceptions to be challenged.
The program brought together an audience from 44+ countries and included great panelists including: EY, Daivergent, Kinaxis, Neurodiversity in the Workplace, and La Casa de Carlota & Friends Lima.
These episodes provide a peer-to-peer framework to help enable and accelerate neurodiversity in the workplace and highlights the SAP Autism Inclusion Pledge which provides free, zero obligation resources which share best practices and lesson learned.
The series had many inspiring, heartfelt moments, including:
|5-Part Series||Session Insights and Topics|
|Session 1: Broadening the Vision of Inclusion – The Value of an Autism-Inclusive Workforce||Shared experiences on how the perspectives of autistic workers prompt all employees to think differently, and how managers became more effective communicators and empathetic leaders.|
|Session 2: The Power of the SAP Autism at Work Program||
Employees feel proud when awareness of inclusion becomes a pillar of an organization
and the atmosphere shifts to focus on employee strengths.
|Session 3: Better Together – Stories from the Employee and Manager Perspective||Workers in a supportive and empathetic environment can feel comfortable to be their authentic selves. An employee shared their story about how awareness generated at work about autism prompted them to pursue a diagnosis upon realizing that they may be autistic.|
|Session 4: Practical Guidance on Creating Inclusive Workforces||Insights on developing supportive conditions throughout the entire employee lifecycle centered around continuous learning.|
|Session 5: How the SAP Autism Inclusion Pledge Inspires Organizations||Neurodiverse workers solve problems in a unique way, such as when the team at La Casa de Carlota apply their skills artistically to help organizations develop their brands and spark innovation.|
Throughout these sessions, the panel highlighted many benefits of autism inclusion in the workforce:
- Focusing on all employees’ strengths
- Fostering an inclusive culture
- Encouraging more empathy between leaders and employees
- Developing an accepting environment
- Building awareness that inclusion is a pillar of organizations
- Recruiting excellent talent
- Adding to employees’ Diversity and Inclusion appreciation
- Enabling new innovations
- Transforming the workforce
- Becoming an employer of choice
SAP Autism Inclusion Pledge
SAP provides free, complimentary resources to those who register for the SAP Autism Inclusion Pledge.
This initiative aims to re-shape thinking about employment possibilities for autistic individuals.
Dive into SAP’s best practices to accelerate your autism inclusion journey and shift perceptions.
Be Inspired – Take the Pledge – Make an Impact.