In this riveting and engrossing talk, David Onley builds on the following quote by Lord Sacks: “One of the gifts of great leaders, and one from which each of us can learn, is that they frame reality for the group. They define its situation. They specify its aims. They articulate its choices. They tell us where we are and where we are going in a way no satellite navigation system could. They show us the map and the destination, and help us see why we should choose this route not that.” Through personal and historic examples, he demonstrates how the above principles can–and do–work for organizations large and small.
Counter-intuitively, the fast track to better business is recruiting from the thousands of college and university graduates who are trained to work, are able to work, and who want to work, yet who are on government assistance because they aren’t being hired. Citing the many recent studies that demonstrate higher productivity, lower absenteeism, and virtually zero workers’ comp claims experienced by employers who hire people with disabilities, David Onley takes audiences through the benefits of a diverse workplace. From individual fast food restaurants to large corporations such as Walgreens, the pattern is the same: productivity and profits go up and absenteeism goes down when people with disabilities are hired. Onley addresses why companies are missing out on this opportunity while at the same time worrying about a labour shortage that for the most part simply does not exist–because the potential employees are out there, ready to be put to work.