Kathy Ferrell has written an interesting article "Aspergians can be great employees". It gives us a pretty good model of how Aspies and NTs can work together to make working together good.
As Ms. Ferrell points out, Aspies may have interpersonal issues. But if we work to counteract them by doing things like read books on etiquette and interpersonal communication (maybe also join groups like Toastmasters) and practice what they've learned, we may behave better than many NTs. For examples, Aspies who have had to work at diplomacy generally know better than to discuss things like religion and politics in the workplace...an example many NTs can learn from.
Also, Aspies who don't like to socialize don't make the mistake many NTs do of forming office friendships which can dissolve and then split their offices.
Many, many NTs also experience serious problems in the workplace due to naivete or other lack of understanding of how human dynamics really operate at work. Aspies who read and apply the lessons learned from good career books like Lona O'Connor's Top Ten Dumb Career Mistakes...And How to Avoid Them will march head and shoulders above NTs who don't.
(I highly recommend this book for everyone: the chapters I've found most helpful include Alienating Your Boss, Having a Bad Attitude and Suffering from a Rotten Image. Ms. O'Connor's practical, nuts-and-bolts presentation provides specific guidance as to what can go wrong and why - and what you can do about it. Aspies may be especially able to make good use of that kind of detail.)
The key is that we have to work at behaving acceptably in the workplace. (We can prove our interpersonal skill by successfully persuading employers of our advantages.) Once we do, employers will find we have an advantage over NTs even in the social department. With our other strengths like attention to detail and ability to master complex areas like - but certainly not limited to - computer technology and math, we can work ourselves ahead of the pack.
What do you think?
Hour 4: What do you want? Look at your goals.
9 years ago