We need the creatives, we need imagination, we need people telling stories.– Maggie Aderin-Pocock , Space Scientist and Science Communicator
Here’s a fact: nine out of ten dyslexics have poor spelling, punctuation and grammar, but many are amazing communicators.
From Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists to respected CNN news anchors, high-profile bishops to gifted space communicators, dyslexics use their curiosity and passion to explore the world, understand complex situations or facts and explain them to others in a way that’s simple and easy to understand.
So why do dyslexics make such good communicators?
Here are five reasons why dyslexics make skilled communicators.
1. Dyslexics make sense of the bigger picture – the Dyslexic Thinking skill of Reasoning.
The dyslexic brain is wired differently, so we are able to connect stories and see patterns in narratives where others may not. This makes us adept at understanding big ideas or evolving situations and explaining them to others.
Many of us become skilled journalists and TV presenters, helping our audience to make sense of world events and situations that are constantly changing. CNN news anchors, Anderson Cooper and Robyn Curnow are both Made By Dyslexia.
Thinking about his role as a storyteller, CNN news anchor Anderson Cooper says:
A lot of compelling stories in the world aren’t being told, and the fact that people don’t know about them compounds the suffering.
Robyn Curnow, says:
Generally, TV news is an amazing place to trust your dyslexic instincts. You have to look at the big picture, identify the story, tell the story and create a narrative that’s simplified so that an audience can understand the main issues.
Like four out of five people, Robyn Curnow attributes her success to her Dyslexic Strengths. She says:
To write for television news is like a dyslexic dream… the sentences are simple, you’re writing with pictures and you need to take away all the useless information. It has to be the real essence of the story.
Her ability to quickly summarise a situation, or assess the facts and present an angle, comes as a result of her dyslexic communication skills.
Watch her explain why her greatest weakness is also her greatest strength in this interview with Made By Dyslexia:
2. Dyslexics are great at simplifying – the Dyslexic Thinking skills of Reasoning and Communicating
Dyslexic minds are great at stripping away unnecessary detail to create clear, compelling messages. This means they excel in careers where explaining, educating or influencing are key, like teaching, marketing, journalism, campaigning or PR.
Roland Rudd, Founder and Chairman of PR firm, Finsbury explains:
Being dyslexic enables you to simplify things very quickly. It enabled me to see the big picture and I could make decisions more creatively and effectively as a result.
Other dyslexic minds, like that of space scientist and communicator Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock, use their dyslexic communication skills to simplify concepts that are ‘out of this world’ and go on to engage new audiences and inspire a generation. She explains:
As a scientist, I have found that I am able to take complex ideas and simplify them, story tell and bring science ideas to life in my own unique way, this has been a huge advantage.