Danish Businessman Hires Only Those With Autism13 Oct 2009
Thorkil Sonne, who owns an IT business in Denmark, is happy with his decision to hire only employees with Autism. This decision was inspired after his third son Lars, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder at three years old.
He now has 43 employees with ASD, he says they are well suited to their roles as people with ASD are known to have the ability to focus and give more attention to detail.
He says that they do their jobs with the high level of precision required to perform such tasks as software testing, data entry and quality control. Sonne says that they do a job that would not motivate generalists to do, by generalists, he means people who do not have ASD. He says that they have the ability to perform tasks like software bug testing, explaining that this is a repetitive task that requires full concentration and in ‘generalists’, this would create reduced focus that could hinder the final outcome.
His business has now been expanded to Scotland and whilst in Australia in September this year for the Asia Pacific Autism Conference, Sonne said that the idea may be replicated in Australia which he said could generate at least 100 jobs.
Sonne says “The term disability
often overshadows the abilities that are typically there, somewhere. You just have to find them."
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I think it’s great to have an entrepreneur who isn’t afraid to hire someone who is seen as ‘different’, it definitely shows that you can’t underestimate what someone with a disability
can do. There should be more high profile business people who take chances like that of Mr Sonne, it can pay off to be the best decision you could ever make.