Key insights, videos and other resources from the event are available to members upon login.
For membership enquiries, please contact us.

04 Sep 2019
Broadening inclusion: how to support colleagues with physical and neurological differences

This workshop has been developed by the CITF Gender Balance and Diversity Group.

A company can best thrive and grow if it can successfully attract and retain the best possible staff. If organisations unknowingly limit their labour force by not including those with these differences, they automatically reduce the chances of finding highly-skilled, competent applicants. Additionally, according to the Disability Business Forum, 7 out of 10 disabled people become disabled during their working lives. As a result, organisations need to plan for those without disabilities as well as retain employees who become disabled.

In this unique CITF workshop, inclusion will be discussed thoroughly at length centred around employees with different physical or neurological traits, with the latter often overlooked. According to the National Autistic Society, despite Autism Spectrum Conditions (ASCs) being part of daily life for 2.8 million people in the UK, only 10% of people diagnosed received forms of employment support, in spite of 53% requesting assistance in the workplace.

Key Learnings to Takeaway

  • How to foster a truly inclusive workforce for those with physical and neurological differences, and the small things that managers can do to maximise these efforts
  • Company Policies that can be put in place in order to help facilitate those with physical or neurological conditions
  • External sources of support that companies can utilise to support the workforce in order to achieve the most out of their careers
Provisional Agenda
Arrival and registration
10:00 Welcome and introductions
10:15 Open discussion: what are our organisations currently doing now, and what is stopping any inclusion?
10:45 Presentation: Artur Ortega, Chief Platform Architect, The Economist. How to change the work environment and culture in tech to increase the diversity and retain it in the long term. Followed by Q&A and Open discussion.
11:45 Break
12:05 Presentation: Helen May, Managing Director, Leadership for Extraordinary Futures. Hidden Difference, Hidden Talent. Followed by Q&A
13:00 Lunch
13:50 Morning summary
14:05 Topic TBC
14:40 Summarising learnings and actions to take back to your organisation, as well as future topics to be covered
15:00 Close
Confirmed Speakers

Artur Ortega | Chief Platform Architect | The Economist
How to change the work environment and culture in tech to increase the diversity and retain it in the long term
People from disadvantaged backgrounds and minorities are underrepresented in tech and often face multiple negative situations at work. In my talk, I will speak from a personal experience, as a blind software architect and leader, how we have to change the work environment and culture in tech for the better.

Helen May | Managing Director | Leadership for Extraordinary Futures
Hidden Difference, Hidden Talent

Neurodiversity is becoming an increasingly common term in the workplace, but there is still limited understanding of the opportunity it presents. Given that we are in a talent crisis and at least 15% of the population are neurodivergent, it is critical that organisations deepen their understanding of this population and understand the implications for leadership, process, practice and culture.
 In this presentation, Helen will introduce the concept and the evidence that shows the positive impact of diverse thinking on innovation and productivity. She will provide insight into the conditions that exist under this umbrella term and the unique talents that each one presents. In addition, she will talk about the culture, leadership practices and adjustments that will enable all employees to bring their unique talents to the table.




 04 September 2019

Summary: Broadening inclusion: How to support colleagues with physical and neurological differences

Download the summary from this workshop.

View resource


 04 September 2019

Presentation: Artur Ortega Changing Technology Culture

Download Artur's presentation from this workshop.

View resource


 04 September 2019

Presentation: Helen May Hidden Difference, Hidden Talent

Download Helen's presentation from this workshop.

View resource



Artur Ortega

Chief Platform Architect, The Economist


Artur leads the Digital transformation at the Economist, where he embraces agile methodologies to introduce cloud based microservices and serverless architectures. As part of his role he determines the architectures for key components of the Economist Group, while influencing the technical direction of digital products across the enterprise. Artur lost his sight at the age of 18, which has spurned on his interest in supporting diversity and inclusion in the tech profession.

Helen May

Managing Director, Leadership for Extraordinary Futures


Helen has worked in the Talent and Organisational Development space for over 20 years, holding senior positions in blue chip corporates and then moving into consultancy. Helen is now Managing Director of Leadership for Extraordinary Futures, a consultancy which supports organisations in accommodating the needs and developing the unique talents of neurodivergent employees. In addition she runs a Community Interest Company ‘Diverse Futures’ which partners with communities of neurodivergent individuals to provide support, promote growth and improve the lives of the members. Helen was diagnosed with ADHD as an adult.

Registered in England No. 3356661        VAT No. 927157412         Legal         Privacy and cookies         Accessibility

© 2016 The Corporate IT Forum