Navigant’s acceptance policy featured in Inc.
This Inc. feature article, The Hiring Decision That Transformed a Company--and an Employee's Future, tells the story of how Ellen Zimiles, Managing Director and Head of Navigant’s Global Investigations & Compliance practice hired and has mentored employees with autism. In 2008, Zimiles hired Dennis Giammusso to join her firm, Daylight Forensic & Advisory, which was later acquired by Navigant. The article details how Dennis as well as a second employee on the autism spectrum have thrived given the learning and development opportunities at Navigant.
Zimiles thinks that having autistic people on staff created cultural change throughout her organization. One day, she received an anonymous note from an employee - saying that he or she was thrilled to work for an organization where people on the spectrum would receive such an opportunity. She believes that staff actually behaved better after the two autistic employees came onboard. "It demonstrates an acceptance of people's differences and valuing people for what they can provide," she says.
Zimiles' confidence in him [Giammusso] and his newfound job satisfaction watered long-dormant seeds of confidence his mother planted in him years ago. "She always told me: 'You can do it!' She always pushed me. She didn't let me quit. She said that I was the smartest one of her kids," he says. He smiles. "I would say that's true."