39. Why the World Needs All Kinds of Minds, with Dr. Temple Grandin

Discover what’s possible when different brains come together. 

Dr. Temple Grandin is well known for both her pioneer work as an autism advocate and her lifelong dedication to animal welfare. Through groundbreaking research aimed at understanding her own autistic mind, Dr. Grandin propelled the awareness of autism during a time when very little was known of it. She is an incredible source of hope for children with autism, their parents, and anyone with a dream. 

Dr. Grandin became an internationally recognized leader in animal handling innovations after developing a corral that improved the quality of life of cattle by reducing stress. She has consulted with the USDA and major corporations such as McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King, Whole Foods, and Chipotle. Today, half of the cattle in North America are handled in facilities she designed. 

Dr. Grandin is also a prominent author, having written several books on autism and animal behavior. She has been featured on various media outlets and programs, including NPR, BBC, Larry King Live, 2020, Sixty Minutes, and TED, to name a few. In 2010, HBO produced an Emmy Award-winning movie about her life, and later that year, she was highlighted in TIME magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World. In 2016, she was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. These days, Dr. Grandin continues to write and teaches Animal Science at Colorado State University. 

In this conversation, Dr. Grandin explains how her ability to think in pictures helped her to empathize with animals in the early days of her career and why she thinks the world needs different brains to work together. She talks about the future of cattle and the dangers of genetic modification — in animals and humans. We discuss how to increase employment for autistic adults, how to promote curiosity among children, and how to stay balanced during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Other topics we cover include the classification of autism under a single umbrella, the neurodiversity movement, ABA therapy, and teaching autism awareness in schools. 

Listen until the end of the conversation to hear Dr. Grandin’s advice for autistic self-advocates. 

For more information about Dr. Grandin and her work, please visit: 

https://www.templegrandin.com/  

https://www.grandin.com/

We still have a few seats available at the next Global Autism Project Virtual Leadership Academy. Leadership Academy is a 6-week online course that will strengthen your skills to lead with confidence in everything that you do — whether it’s improving staff retention in your business, having hard conversations with supervisees, or empowering others to take ownership of their work. For more information about Leadership Academy, listen to my Black Friday bonus episode. Sign up today and use the promo code AUTISMPODCAST at check out to receive a special discount! 

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