This post is written today because it no longer matters how ‘unattractive’ I am as an autistic employee, as the resume of a 57-year-old female containing 30+ years of experience across numerous domains; as an entrepreneur, a consultant, and a hands-on solution delivery professional still gets rejected faster than you can finish reading this complex sentence.
Shucks, agism isn’t a thing! **cough**
So, for all those people who do not yet understand how unethical it is to delve into a candidate’s life (that are and will read this to the end) – here are all the things that have cost me positions and roles in the past. If you think any of them are inappropriate, please save us both time… look elsewhere.
I do not consider ‘feelings’ as professionally valuable unless they are coming from a customer, from a validated data set, or from direct ethnographic research. I especially do not consider the ‘feelings’ of a peer, colleague, or executive as being more important than the quality, veracity, or efficiency of operational processes and the efficacy of executive decision making.
I do not consider the various political and/or power-pursuit dynamics that often run amok in corporations when rendering a professional assessment; I will provide you with the best validated, highest quality data your budget makes available. I will deliver a professionally neutral opinion on alternatives, mitigation and/or contingencies, and related strategic and tactical options, regardless the audience. Yes, I can build a red folder, too.
I do not perform well in environments that cannot, do not, or will not respect the reality that there is a literal energy, emotional, and extrinsically extent cost of working that neither corporations, benefits, regulation, nor legislation protect, let alone consider as part of ‘support and maintenance of a human “resource”‘. I defend what all of those consistently refuse to, even when it is inconvenient to them, costs them schedule slippage, or otherwise impacts the desired progress and efficiency.
To be clear – I now must work fully from home precisely because I did NOT defend these things from these identified, and the resultant stress and cannibalization of myself to endure unreasonable, unrealistic, and arduous ‘wear and tear’ alongside unethical pressure/toxicity has me teetering on the edge of full physical disability. You can likely add some mental resentment and anger to the laundry list, too, because none of those companies would DREAM of acknowledging, let alone redressing, the true cost that this 30-year spaghetti bowl and its ground meat of ME have journaled.
I am an autistic human. I am preternaturally prolific and performative, usually reformative, and always, always, outside the box.
I make magic out of mountains others call manure. I can iterate faster than most cogitate. I realize how alien(ating) I seem and have worked to teach myself that this both does not and should not matter in the face of this history of successes and results. You may need to overlook my refusal to diminish or have dismissed factual credit due to my involvement and contributions – particularly when so many have been manipulated or outright stolen during my working career.
What hiring managers are sitting here boggling over, what general counsels and generalists alike will slowly back away from, and what all individual contributors and mid-level professionals are nodding over as they read this…. these are entirely different things. But I guarantee you that a poll of readers at the end of this article will dominate in their universal rejection of this candidate called “me” because the idea that I’m able to do so much more than tersely outline my boundaries kind of drifts off the prefrontal lobes while you are busy carefully cataloging and labeling all my “undesirable traits”.
Which is kind of the problem. You’re looking for perfection. You should be looking for performance.
Even my “enemies” will tell you I get things done. Cheaper. Faster. With significantly fewer issues or errors.
Which is why I say that when a company wants to get something (or maybe even a few) done, they should reach out and explore with me.
Since 2016, and after delivering over 4,000 qualified resumes, all of them free from deception or exaggeration – I’m still unemployed.
Consider that I prefer to call it ‘agism’ because that’s the cherry on the sundae; but under that, every negative stereotype you ever heard about ‘autistic women’, ‘strong, well-spoken women’, ‘self-educated white-collar professionals’, and of course ‘passionate expression’ lurk (and then some).
Consider also that my engagement and commitment to things runs as deep and strong as my frustrations, resentments, and principles.
I think different. I am different. I offer perspectives that are valuable in today’s world alongside some of the best predictive analysis you’ll ever see.
I want to work.
I am not the problem here.
Proximity is not permission. Access is not authorization. Identity is declared, not assigned. Even * said, “I am.”
Fair Warning: I’m nice until you’re not… FAFO.
#AIWhisperer | #Analyst | #ProductOwner | #ProductManager