Advocacy & Allyship: Harnessing Your Power | Insights from Parham Doustdar

Posted by Templeton on Wednesday, 29 May 2024

Blind programmer Parham Doustdar has a wealth of insights into inclusion and advocacy in the working world, in his position leading Product Accessibility at, and his own experience seeing the world differently. 


Parham shares: 

  • His personal career journey as a disabled tech professional working around the world 
  • How working as a blind professional informs his approach to Tech and Engineering 
  • The forgotten accessibility and inclusion challenges that most impact diverse and disabled professionals in the workplace 
  • The power of allyship: how allies have supported his career, and how to become a true ally. 


Tune in now!

Here's a recap of the insightful discussion and key takeaways from the podcast:  

Parham's Personal Journey 

Parham's career trajectory is as inspiring as it is illuminating. From teaching himself programming at the age of 14 to relocating from Iran to the Netherlands, his story is a testament to perseverance and passion. Initially starting as a backend engineer, Parham's transition into Cloud engineering and DevOps showcased his adaptability and willingness to embrace new challenges. 

In 2018, Parham assumed the role of co-chair of an Employee Resource Group at, focusing on supporting individuals with physiological and neurological diversity. His personal experiences, particularly as a blind professional, fueled his commitment to advocating for accessibility and inclusion in the workplace. 

The Power of Allyship 

During the podcast, Parham shed light on the forgotten accessibility and inclusion challenges that disproportionately impact diverse and disabled professionals. He emphasized the transformative power of allyship, sharing how allies have supported his career and offering guidance on how others can become true allies. 

Advocacy and Self-Advocacy 

The insights into self-advocacy resonate deeply with professionals navigating diverse workplaces. He highlighted the importance of advocating for one's needs, balancing mental health with professional demands, and developing personal and professional resilience. Parham also provided practical strategies to prevent accessibility burnout and foster a culture of proactive engagement among colleagues. 

Seeking External Guidance 

Central to Parham's journey is the value of seeking external guidance and support. As a life coach for diverse individuals, he emphasized the role of coaching in exploring new perspectives and potential solutions. Cultivating a supportive social network, both within and outside the workplace, emerged as a crucial component of personal and professional growth. 

Check it out!

Our podcast offered invaluable insights into the power of advocacy, allyship, and self-advocacy in the tech industry. Parham’s journey serves as a beacon of hope for professionals facing similar challenges, reminding us of the importance of inclusivity and empowerment in fostering diverse and thriving workplaces. 

At Templeton and Partners, we are committed to championing diversity and inclusion in the tech sector. We strive to create a more equitable and supportive environment for all professionals. 

Join us in embracing the principles of advocacy and allyship to harness your power and drive positive change in the working world. Together, we can build a more inclusive future for all. 


Topics: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI)