Talks

About my Talks

As an experienced, autistic speaker, I have been giving talks to a wide variety of audiences around the UK and on a global scale since 2010. My talks encourage autistic and neurodivergent people to focus on their strengths and help neurotypical people (those that aren't autistic) to understand us better and therefore accommodate us to a greater extent. I like to think I am "sitting on the fence" between the neurotypical and autistic worlds and thus can act as an interpreter between the two.

Whether you're looking for a keynote speaker for your next conference or a thought-provoking voice for your podcast or webinar, I'll be there. I speak at all types of events - shows, conferences, panels, "lunch and learn" sessions, seminars and school assemblies. My audiences are just as diverse - I have given talks to employers, teaching professionals and parents as well as children (Key Stage 1 and above) and, of course, other autistic people. My clients have ranged from parent groups and charities to the International School of Geneva, global pharmaceutical companies and even Google.

I focus on the positive aspects of autism from personal experience. My talks have always been very well received (see Comments and Feedback below) and I cover a variety of topics, from strategies to help overcome difficulties I have faced as a child to the world of employment and most of what's in between. I also talk about how I use many of my autistic traits to my advantage and I explore the notion that being "normal" isn't necessarily what we want to achieve.

If you would like me to give a talk for you please get in touch. In the mean time, check out some previews of me speaking - firstly my TED talk at TEDxOxford, then my Manageable Guide to Neurodiversity, aimed at companies looking to gain a competitive advantage by harnessing neurodivergent talent, as well as some snippets from a talk I gave on my 2014 UK tour.

Upcoming Talks

I am offering both in-person talks as well as remote talks (via Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, Streamyard and other platforms). Book me today!

Thursday 16th May
Connect Conference, Blackpool

Wednesday 5th June
Glencore, London

The Autism Show - Book your tickets in advance and save 20%!
For each event I will be speaking at 11:05am on the Hub Theatre 1

Friday 24th - Saturday 25th May
Autism Show, Manchester Central, Manchester

Friday 14th - Saturday 15th June
Autism Show, The ExCel, London

Friday 21st - Saturday 22nd June
Autism Show, NEC, Birmingham


My next talk, virtual or in-person, could be for you! Please contact me for more details and to discuss a booking.

Comments and Feedback

REACH, Parent support group based in the Bahamas, April 2024
"Thank you so much for making such an inspiring, enlightening presentation"

"That was inspirational" "Awesome presentation!"

"This is amazing information. I LOVE IT!!" "Very clear and pragmatic"

Hastings Direct, Neurodiversity Celebration Week Lunch and Learn, March 2024
"This is without a doubt the best talk on neurodiversity I have ever been to and I have been to a few. Delivered in such an engaging and meaningful way, I'm sure you have made an impact!"

"The most engaging talk I have listened to in many years!"

"This was brilliant! I loved the way you explained this all so well and brought humour to what can be very frustrating and lonely experiences."

"This talk was brilliant and it's opened my eyes and taught me so much!"


International School of Geneva, Neurodiversity Celebration Week, March 2024
"Really, really impressive, I am serious, one of the best speakers we have had, and I have invited well over 300. He gave three well balanced and humorous talks yesterday to over 650 students across the three campuses. The feedback has been very positive."

"That was the best assembly I've ever had in my life!"


NHS Skills Development Network, London, February 2024
"As ever brilliant, thought proving and inspiring!"
"I'm a nurse. You've completely changed my perspective on autism!"
"Such an inspiring talk"

Sony, November 2023
"So many of the things you talked about resonate."
"Thank you for a great session!"

NHS Digital Future Midlands Conference, September 2023
"Great session by Michael Barton "Autism and neurodiversity in the workplace" - we have so much more we need to do in this area!

Hampton Primary School Inset Day, September 2023
"You really were an inspiration to my staff, sharing your life and experiences, giving people an insight and a deeper understanding. Thank you again!"
Yvonne Nunn, Headteacher

Mind Gym talk series, June 2023
"That was an awesome talk, Michael! So thought provoking and a great way of explaining it"
"That was fantastic Michael, thank you very much!  I’m about to deliver to a group that will have neurodivergent participants and I will immediately use your information"
"Michael thank you for educating us!! You are brilliant - this was AWESOME!!"
"A very insightful session!"


CLS Group, April 2023
"Thank you Michael. Very insightful."
"Really interesting thank you!" "Great and informative presentation!"


James Hutton Institute, Autism Acceptance Week, March 2023
"Wonderful talk, I really appreciate your positive outlook! :)"
"Great talk Michael!" "It was Wonderful, thank you Michael."
"As a parent of a neurodivergent child you have given me hope!"


Billing Brook School, Neurodiversity Celebration Week, March 2023
"A great session. Michael engaged the audience by sharing his lived experiences and his effective use of humour. Most importantly he clearly articulated key messages. Everyone is individual; ensure strengths are valued and given opportunities to develop further.

If anyone is seeking a speaker I would highly recommend Michael."
Karen Lewis, Headteacher. Taken from LinkedIn.


Brands2Life, January 2023
"This was a fantastic talk, and very insightful, thank you very much!"
"An exceptional talk!"

TEDxOxford, 21st January 2023
"You were absolutely wonderful!"
"Great work on shining a light on such an overlook yet vital part of EDI (Equality, Diversity and Inclusion)"
"I loved Michael's encouragement to focus on the strengths (rather than deficits) people bring."

"Every employer should watch this"
"Very well delivered indeed, great use of humour and some very strong messages. I feel deeply challenged. It has helped me immensely - thank you!!"

Vidsy, November 2022
"Thank you Michael! That was so interesting"
"Incredibly eye opening!" "Thank you that was really insightful"

McClatchy, October 2022
"This was fantastic! Thank you!"
"This was amazing!" "So interesting!"
"Outstanding presentation!"

Cork Autism Conference, October 2022
"The best conference I have attended in years!"
"Everything was perfect!" "All the speakers were awesome, I can't wait for the next one!"
Many more reviews are available on Facebook and Google

Supporting autistic teenagers: Education, mental health and wellbeing conference, September 2022
"Excellent presentation. Really helpful"
"It is fantastic to hear such a positive voice and hear all of your personal experiences!"
"A very touching presentation" "Big fan :)"

GOSH Charity, July 2022
"Great to hear from @MichaelBarton22 as part of our EDI Inspiring Change Series at @GOSHCharity. A wonderful, insightful, and funny session on his experiences navigating the world as an autistic person! Great that we are having this session during #DisabilityPrideMonth"
Demi Eades, EDI & Wellbeing Specialist, Great Ormond Street Hospital

"Thank you Michael, that was extremely interesting and I really liked the humour."
"It's been a really, really insightful session"

NAS Surrey Branch AGM, June 2022
“Absolutely wonderful and fascinating insight.  Probably the most useful overview that I think we could have had.”
Paul Clements, Chair, National Autistic Society, Surrey Branch

"You're doing such a service for people!"
"Brilliant!" "Great insight!"
"What a great talk!"

Innocent Drinks, April 2022
"Really informative and valuable for us to hear"

South Western Railway, April 2022
"This was a thoroughly engaging and eye-opening discussion of the topic presented with a mix of humour, self-awareness and candour where Michael shared a range of insights into his own life experiences."
Jonathan Roberts, Finance Director. Taken from LinkedIn.

"That was excellent, and very funny"
"Brilliant session Michael!"
"Very informative; it's been an eye opening experience"

Progressing Neurodiversity at Work Panel, Institute of Government & Public Policy, March 2022
"Thank you for your fantastic work at chairing! It was an absolute pleasure working with you!"
"Very informative content all round"

LloydsDirect, March 2022
"Amazing presentation. Thank you!"
"Thank You! So very informative 🤩"
"Super insightful, thank you so much Michael 🙏"
"Thank you so much for talking to us today! 😊"

Brands2Life, October 2021
"Thank you so much for a brilliant talk. Genuine laughter on this end, and head nodding with the insights."
"Learnt so much!" "Incredibly useful" "Super insightful"
"This has been amazing, thank you Michael. Lots of great insight to take forward and help boost employment percentage [for autistic people]"
"A lot to think about when it comes to recruitment and interviews - brilliant. Thank you again"

Moving Ahead Inclusion and Diversity Summit, September 2021
"I’ve just listened to Michael Barton during the Moving Ahead #inclusionanddiversity Summit. An incredible insight and perspective into autism and neurodiversity in the work place."
"I really enjoyed listening to @GoCharlieM, @MichaelBarton22 and @WajahatAli @MovingAheadOrg's Inclusion & Diversity summit this morning. Everyone was so inspiring and interesting, what a great event #IDS2021
"Was amazing to hear you all speak about your experiences and how we can all play a role in how the world adapts - thank you"


The Autism Show, June 2021
"I really REALLY enjoyed the new talk of yours Michael. It was definitely such a succinct way of getting across a very impactful message."
"Brilliant!  The visuals were wonderful.  Every employer should watch this"
"Thank you so much Michael, what a wonderful talk.  The world would be a much better place if all employers could see the benefits of having diverse thinking in the workplace just by making a few reasonable adjustments."

Hootsuite, April 2021
"What...a....session!
That presentation was on another level! 100's of comments on Workplace as you were speaking, endless questions and tons of engagement.
Thought provoking and engaging!
Ed Woolley, Senior Director, Customer Success Leader. Taken from LinkedIn.

"Wow! It is hard to express in words how you made me feel today. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to learn from you, to be moved by your story and to remind me that as an ally I will always have so much to learn."
"Your humour and directness was so refreshing. Everyone needs to hear your message!"
"It was a truly inspiring and eye opening session 🙏"
"I cried, laughed & learnt so much. Could not think of a better inspiration to end the week"
"Feeling so fortunate to be able to hear this information from this perspective. So powerful."

What Next? Virtual Shows, November 2020 and March 2021
"That was great!"
Head of Publishing, Venture Marketing Group Ltd

"I found [your talk] incredibly engaging and inspiring - thank you for raising my awareness, particularly around how I can work to support students with autism."
Caroline Berry, Career Development Consultant

Hootsuite, November 2019
"We are all keen to make a meaningful difference where we can and Michael Barton absolutely did. The interest in this debate was off the charts and I think the whole office listened.

The most powerful part of this was Michael's focus on the vital importance of diverse thinking for teams and companies, as well as the focus on the positive attributes of individuals on the spectrum that seems to get overlooked far too much. 

There is a vast pool of talent available and we simply need to do more."
Ed Woolley, Senior Director, Customer Success. Content taken from his LinkedIn post.

"Michael's talk was both thoughtful and insightful. He unpacked a subject in an approachable and tactical manner. I learned a great deal about Autism while better understanding his perspective. Top Man!!"
Daniel MacQueen, EMEA Implementation Specialist

"What I appreciated most about Michael's talk was how he managed to discuss such a vast array of problems that people with Autism face whilst answering the question of how we can be more accommodating and help."
Dominique Elsey, Enterprise Marketing Specialist

"Michael's talk was super engaging and informative - one of the best I've had the chance to join lately. But most of all, I appreciated the practical suggestions given to help us make our workplace more diverse and be generally more aware of how to make interactions easier with people with autism and get the best out of their superpowers!"
Geghani Abramian, Engagement Manager

The Autism Show, June 2019
"The best talk I've ever heard. It was just on the spot."
Parent of young man diagnosed at 18

"Fantastic talk that really explains from an Autistic perspective"
Autistic teacher

"Funny, refreshing and honest. Really enjoyed every minute of this talk"
24 year old with Asperger's

"Fantastic talk, really enjoyable and informative. Should be delivered to schools and colleges across the country and definitely for business owners."
D Wootton, Location Manager for adults with complex needs. Parent and grandparent of 3 autistic kids

Thinking Differently About Autism Conference, Cognitive Centre, May 2019
Listening to @MichaelBarton22 speak about #autism should be mandatory for everyone working with children and teenagers. A privilege to hear his presentation at today’s ‘Thinking Differently About Autism’ conference hosted by @cogcen

Great conference today - thanks @cogcen for organising. Fab opening by @MichaelBarton22
Comments taken from Twitter

The FANTASTIC @MichaelBarton22 kicks off our #autism conference and wows us all.
Wendy Cooper, Director, Cognitive Centre

MCCH Hub Talk, November 2018
"Absolutely amazing talk you did at the Hub this evening. You just get better and better ... Inspirational is one word to describe your ability to articulate autism positivity!!"

"Another inspirational and informative talk by @MichaelBarton22 helpful information in Q&A for parents, teachers and anyone with an interest in #autism"

HMC School Librarians' Conference, October 2018
"This was very interesting and I felt much better informed about the issues facing autistic people and also about the amazing things that they can achieve."

"I thought the session was excellent. It gave me a much needed insight into the world of the Autistic."

"Brilliant speaker - thoroughly informative and enjoyable."

Certitude Seminar, September 2018
"It was wonderful to have you and your session was very popular."
“This seminar was good. Great to hear from someone with Autism.”
“More presentations like Michael's.”
“The seminar was perfect.”

The National Gallery SEND Conference, September 2018
"We had very positive feedback from delegates. Everyone appreciated the opportunity to get together to be both informed and inspired."
Caroline Smith, Programmer for Schools and Teachers, The National Gallery

"Wow!! What an amazing and insightful day @NationalGallery I'm feeling inspired!!"

"Fascinating and entertaining insight into autistic thinking by @MichaelBarton22 at @NationalGallery"

"Inspiring talk on autism from author Michael Barton"
Comments taken from Twitter

Cork Autism Conference, September 2017
"Thank you so much for your very inspiring, informative and thought-provoking presentation ...  I know many received insights and tools which they can use to support and empower adults and children with autism and ASD."
Michéal O'Mathuna, CEO & founder, The Health Zone

More reviews available from the Cork Autism Conference 2017 on Facebook

Dennis Genius Week, Dennis Publishing Ltd, June 2016
"An amazing talk by Michael Barton, thank you so much! Hope everyone enjoyed it as much as I did!"
Sinead Waugh, Digital Sales Administrator, Dennis Publishing Ltd.

"That was an awesome session!"
Amrit Gill, Client Services Manager, Dennis Publishing Ltd.

The Autism Show 2016, The NEC, Birmingham
"We travelled from Lowestoft for the show and it was worth it just to hear you speak!"
Parent

Dennis Publishing Ltd. Charity Introduction Morning, April 2016
"Hugely inspiring talk by @MichaelBarton22 a colleague at @DennisUK talking abt life with high functioning autism"
Paul Hood, Head of Digital of the Technology Division, Dennis Publishing Ltd.

University of the 3rd Age (U3A) Meeting, January 2016
"That was the best talk I've ever heard! I didn't want him to stop!"
U3A Member (retired nurse)

"A fantastic talk! Informative, amusing and very moving in places."
U3A Member (great-grandparent of 3-year old autistic boy)

National Autistic Society AGM 2015
"Fabulous presentation from Michael at our AGM today"
Carol Povey, Director of the NAS Centre for Autism, National Autistic Society

Protocol Education Annual Conference 2015
"We have had many guest speakers over the years at our Company Conferences, but no one has entertained and informed in equal measure and to such a high degree as you did."
Scott Owen, Marketing Manager, Protocol Education Ltd.