Joy Peters, Executive Chronicles | Fearful that a disability would hold you back from securing employment? Fear not!
There will obviously be many jobs that a person with a disability would not be able to do. For example, a person who requires a wheelchair to move around would realistically be unable to work in the kitchen of a busy restaurant, as chefs would need to be on their feet for several hours a day. Instead, the person could put their mind to creating beautiful recipes from the comfort of home and then making these in a setting that doesn’t have the pressure of keeping pace with a continuous stream of orders under duress from a hard-pressed head chef, nor the requirement to physically travel to a restaurant and navigate a cramped, bustling kitchen.
UK-based chronic pain charity Burning Nights produced this interesting infographic which contains practical advice for disabled jobseekers on how to emphasise what they can offer rather than being inhibited by the difficulties of their condition. Instead of squandering time applying for jobs that are evidently too difficult to perform, seek out those which require minimal physical exertion and aren’t likely to be highly stressful. If a position is advertised as offering flexible working arrangements whereby the candidate could work from home, this is a major plus point.
It’s at your discretion whether you wish to tell your employer about your disability, but it’s often best to inform them even to a basic degree so that a difficult situation doesn’t arise later. By disclosing your disability, the employer is adequately briefed and will most likely organise the interview in a way that’s comfortable for you. By not telling them, you risk being summoned to the upper environs of a multi-storey building for an interview, whereas if they knew, they would probably arrange it for ground level or even allow you to do the interview from home.
If you have a disability and you’re searching for part-time or full-time employment, this infographic is essential reading. It contains plenty of practical and valuable tips on how to approach the job search and any interviews that come up. An employer who sees a disabled candidate with a positive attitude and a determination to succeed will be impressed and is likely to at least offer an interview if the candidate’s aptitudes match the job description.
The key takeaway for disabled jobseekers is to focus on what you can do and communicate that emphatically to prospective employers.