Talks

About my Talks

Michael Barton speaks in front of a large audience at the Autism Show in London.Michael with Professor Simon Baron-Cohen

I have been giving talks to a wide range of audiences around the UK since 2010 about what it's like to be on the autism spectrum. My talks encourage autistic people to focus on their strengths and help neurotypical people (those that aren't autistic) to understand them better and therefore accommodate them 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. I have spoken at shows, conferences, schools, workshops, panels and seminars to employers, teaching professionals and parents as well as children and adults on the spectrum.

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 wide range of topics, from strategies to help overcome difficulties I have faced, 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 at your event please get in touch.

Upcoming Talks

I am offering both in-person talks as well as remote talks via Zoom (or similar). Please get in touch to find out more.

Thursday 3rd February, School talk


Friday 17th - Saturday 18th June, The Autism Show, ExCel Centre, London


Friday 24th - Saturday 25th June, The Autism Show, NEC, Birmingham


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

Comments and Feedback

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.