The Gift of Dyslexia

By Christina Cornelius Monday, November 30, 2009

While doing some research I came across a few interesting studies regarding dyslexia and entrepreneurs that I found to be very interesting. In 2004, a study by a research center based at Case Business School in the UK reported that 20% of British entrepreneurs identified themselves as dyslexic. (Whereas, only 4% of corporate managers in the same study identified themselves as dyslexic).  In 2007, a similar study suggested that the percentage of dyslexics among American entrepreneurs is in fact greater, where 35% of entrepreneurs identified themselves as dyslexic.

Some suggest that several traits and experiences common to dyslexics converge to create this tendency towards entrepreneurial activity. People who are dyslexic often excel in the one of the fine arts, see abstract patterns where others would not, rely on delegating to get certain things done, prefer to get straight to the point when reading and writing, they value doing rather than studying, show high levels of creative thinking skills, and have experienced failure and bounced back—all fantastic traits for entrepreneurs.

Here are a few very successful famous entrepreneurs who identify themselves as dyslexic: Richard Branson (Virgin), Charles Schwab (Charles Schwab), Ted Turner (Turner Broadcasting), John Chambers (Cisco), Henry Ford (Ford Motor Company), Paul Orfalea (Kinko’s).

If this topic interests you be sure to check out the book written by Paul Orfalea, the founder of Kinko's called Copy This!: Lessons from a Hyperactive Dyslexic who Turned One Bright Idea Into One of America’s Best Companies.

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