What am I so much better at than other people?

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Joined: 1 Feb 2011
Age: 36
Gender: Male
Posts: 532
Location: Planet Emorf

22 Sep 2021, 2:57 pm

What am I so much better at than other people?

(In terms of skills for a career).

Which career skill am I so much better at than other people?


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Joined: 3 Jul 2019
Age: 122
Gender: Male
Posts: 348
Location: Australia

23 Sep 2021, 3:05 pm

Always a relevant question.

I'll admit that while I've talked to a lot of other autistic people, in-depth discussions of work haven't always come up. There have been some things mentioned, though.

In my own case I spend many years being solidly good at physical paperwork, and spectacularly better at processing and troubleshooting when it was almost entirely digital work. I was one of the few people I knew in my administrative and IT-based jobs who bothered to learn enough about the computer platforms I was using to be able to automate a lot of the work that the vast majority of colleagues slogged through manually.

I was also able to see and act on pattern of work data that no-one else could (or at least did), which is similar to another autistic person I knew who was able to not only rip through computer-based processing at their job but also do the pattern-recognition which enabled them to spot potential financial, legal, and auditing problems and pass them to their boss long before they could build up enough to become genuine issues for the employer; they acted as kind of central hub that a fair chunk of the employer's data flowed through (in addition to the work they were ostensibly hired for), and were able to identify, separate out, and forward issues to the relevant areas as an advanced warning system.

A third person was a fairly stock-standard corporate programmer, was really good at it, and seemed to enjoy it. Another worked at animal sanctuaries - fairly physical work, but they were amazing with animals. Still another was an engineering TA at a university, and very good at breaking down concepts into simple parts.

There does seem to be something of an autistic affinity for 'back-room' work - jobs which are away from the public eye, and are often very repetitious, or at least structured and formulaic. This isn't always the case, of course - I've done public-facing customer service jobs myself - but there seems to be more... scope for top-level performance, if you were, in jobs where people can throw themselves into working with their hands or with computer system data, more than with other people. Some people have also mentioned jobs like long-distance trucking, where human interaction is fairly limited and tends to also be somewhat formulaic. Back-end work can be anything from the hundreds of out-of-sight jobs that keep hospitals functioning, to installers on new buildings, to the people who write manuals or online references for everything, to proofreaders, to things like night cleaners and security, shelf-stockers, accounts processors, laboratory technicians, researchers, auditors, you name it.

(This isn't to say that low-interpersonal-level jobs are for everyone. Some people are honestly great at it. Not everyone is going to be the stereotype. But it's still often worth a look.)


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Joined: 25 Feb 2020
Age: 54
Gender: Male
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Location: Southern Sweden

23 Sep 2021, 4:56 pm

It's really an impossible question. Only you and people close to you can know what you're good at.
I guess if you have a "special interest", working with that may be good.
It may also be bad.


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