A training program, workplace practice and awareness campaign, that supports hiring people who have exceptional skills, yet are limited by impaired social, occupational or sensory dysfunction associated with High Functioning Autism or Asperger’s.

Although people with Asperger’s may have developmental delays in some areas, ‘My Big Idea’ focuses on the positive aspects of innate ‘Genius’ abilities to highlight the specific value of these individuals to businesses and the community.

These ‘Genius’ traits include: • Independent and unique thinking abilities • A particularly logical approach to solving problems • Conscientious and ethical values • Exceptional knowledge in a specialised areas • An ability to recall errors supporting quality control measures • High Fluid intelligence that can accelerate product development advancements • Unique artistic aptitudes with an ability to design and create inspiring artworks, innovative projects and unique products.

Challenges: Misunderstanding unrealistic expectations and pressure to communicate or participate in activities beyond the person’s ability can trigger sensory overload and meltdown for those with Asperger's. Mental health complications can be significant including severe anxiety and depression and in worst cases suicide.

The purpose of focusing on the positive ‘Genius’ attributes of these individuals can break this challenging cycle by helping to build their depleted self-confidence and fosters positive community understanding.

Company Training: In the ‘Genius Friendly Workplace’ companies would train with expert services. This training is aimed to assist in implementation of small adjustments to workplace practice specifically geared to accept and assist employees with High Functioning Autism or Asperger’s. On completion of this training the business would then be identified with the badge ‘Genius Friendly Workplace’

These practices not only support any staff that may have Asperger’s but by default also foster a peaceful workplace where all staff can function to their greatest capacity.

Employment Opportunities: The ‘Genius Friendly Workplace’ badge would be placed with the detail of Positions Vacant advertisements.

Naturally, all candidates would be considered for suitability for the role, however the ‘Genius Friendly Workplace’ badge would act as an encouraging confidence builder for those with Asperger’s to apply.

Awareness Campaign: A ‘Genius Friendly’ awareness campaign would be designed around known and respected works from artistic, scientific and design fields created by people, past and present, which are believed to have had Asperger’s. In this way the campaign would strengthen community awareness through a positive value orientated message.

Helping to Identify and Understand: Asperger’s is mostly a 'hidden' difference, as it may not be obvious to others nor to a person with these traits, that their brain is processing the world differently.

There is scant data about the prevalence of High Functioning Autism or Asperger’s in adults and it is possible that many Australian adults with these conditions are undiagnosed.

The ‘Genius Friendly’ awareness campaign will not only helps to remove stigma attached with Asperger’s by reflecting on positive traits, it would also aims to gently and positively assist adults who, perhaps via this campaign, become aware that they may have Asperger’s.

Support: To fulfill the brief of ‘Genius Friendly’ the associated websites design requires a positive spin, whilst still validating difficult experiences, its main aims are to boost confidence, foster understanding and encourage working capacity.

Primarily, the ‘Genius Friendly’ program is designed to retain a positive tone to alleviate stigmatized fears in socially dysfunctional people. Its imperative is to promote inclusiveness and a sense of valued appreciation to help build confidence in these valuable individuals.

‘Genius Friendly Workplace’ has the ability to be easily replicated into schools, universities, sporting groups and recreational clubs.

My Big Idea ‘Genius Friendly Workplace’ would deliver outcomes that support the notion that with the right initial attitude, support strategies and encouragement, people with Asperger’ can lead capable, independent lives as valued members of the workforce.

Please support this important cause by voting for your workplace to become Genius Friendly.

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