LinkedIn users can now choose to add ‘dyslexic thinking’ as a skill on their profiles, in the latest move by the networking platform to promote inclusivity and allow professionals to create profiles that better reflect their work lives.
The addition to LinkedIn’s skills list is the product of a collaboration with Virgin founder and prominent entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson and global charity Made by Dyslexia, and comes as Dictionary.com says it will also add the term to its online resource.
Branson told PA news agency he will be adding ‘dyslexic thinking’ as a skill on his own LinkedIn profile following the “breakthrough”, and he hopes others with dyslexia do the same too.
People with dyslexia think “creatively and more expansively”, says Branson, who wants to see more companies actively seeking out dyslexic and neurodiverse thinkers.
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Branson has previously spoken about his experience with dyslexia, which he says has been integral to his success in the business world.
“I know that I would not have been able to achieve what I have achieved in my life if I hadn’t been more dyslexic, so I am very grateful for it,” he said this week.
As many as one in five people are dyslexic, according to Made By Dyslexia, with the term referring to a “genetic difference in an individual’s ability to learn and process information”.
LinkedIn’s vice president of communications Nicole Leverich said in a statement she is also “proud to be dyslexic and a part of this movement to redefine what it means”.
“By adding ‘dyslexic thinking’ as a skill on LinkedIn, we can help recognise the creative, problem-solving and communication skills people with dyslexia bring to their work,” she said.
LinkedIn has added a number of new features to its profiles over the past 12 months, including allowing users to add pronouns to their profiles and giving users more options to describe breaks in their career, including “parental leave”, “stay-at-home-parent” and “sabbatical”.
Commenting in April 2021, LinkedIn engineering lead Bef Ayenew said the platform is committed to becoming more inclusive.
“Every person’s career journey is different and we’re working hard to make sure LinkedIn provides an inclusive experience for everyone,” he said.