Discussing Autism & Neurodiversity on the Beyond Tech Skills podcast

podcasts Aug 30, 2022

 I had another wonderful opportunity to be a podcast guest. The topic area of this podcast is quite different and I really love it. While both the hosts, Liron and Jim, are long term hard core Oracle database gurus the podcast is about all things in the tech world except the actual tech. They bring a view of being in tech that is not frequently discussed.

There was one question that was asked which gave me a very different spin on the all too common challenge of communicating in a socially appropriate manner. Liron is from Israel and moved from there to western Canada 4 years ago. He tells me that in Israel speaking directly and clearly stating the point is the norm in their culture. He found that in North America it is more common and the acceptable approach to not state many things directly but to phrase things so the direct meaning is between the lines. He also had told me a story of an American colleague who presented at a Dutch conference. He was given a compliment on his presentation. He wasn't sure if he really did well or if it was like in America where we tell everyone they were great regardless. He asked a Dutch friend who told him when they say it is good it is good and will directly say it is bad if it is bad. Liron's question was do I find a difference in the level of communication challenge when speaking to people from different cultures. I never considered that communication style was a cultural norm. Once he made me think about it I recognized that some cultures are much easier for me to communicate with. Unfortunately, American culture is a challenge due to indirect, between the lines style that is considered "correct". Very interesting perspective and makes me want to chat with some autistics from the direct speaking cultures to see if there is less communication issues.

 Check out the episode I think you will find it very insightful. 

Thanks once again Liron and Jim for having me as a guest. It was a super enjoyable time.