For just a moment, imagine that you’re working as a salesperson. Now imagine that you have a call scheduled today with a really important client. Multiple reps from their offices have gathered to discuss whether to employ your business for the job. As the call goes on, voices go up and down…and are at times difficult to hear. But you’re getting most of it.
Cranking up the speaker just makes it sound more distorted. So you simply make do, interpreting what’s being said the best you can. You’re very good at that.
There comes a point in the discussion where things become particularly difficult to hear. This is the stage where the potential client asks “so exactly how will your firm help us solve this?””
You panic. You didn’t catch the last few minutes and aren’t sure what problem they’re trying to resolve. Your boss is counting on you to seal this deal. What can you do?
Should you acknowledge you didn’t hear them and ask them to repeat what they said? They might think you weren’t paying attention. What about relying on some slippery sales jargon? No, they’ll see right through that.
Every single day, individuals everywhere go through situations like this while working. They attempt to read between the lines and cope.
So in general, how is your work being impacted by your hearing loss? The following will help us find out.
The Better Hearing Institute questioned 80,000 people utilizing the same method the Census Bureau uses to obtain a representative sampling.
They found that people who have untreated hearing loss earn about $12,000 less per year than those who can hear.
Hey, that isn’t fair!
Hearing loss impacts your general performance so it isn’t hard to understand the above example. Unfortunately, he couldn’t close the deal. Everything was going very well until the client thought he wasn’t listening to them. They decided to go with a company that listens better.
His commission on this contract would have been more than $1000.
The situation was misinterpreted. But how do you think this impacted his career? If he was wearing hearing aids, imagine how different things might have been.
Injuries on the job
A study reported in the Journal of The American Medical Association found that individuals with neglected hearing loss are nearly 30% more likely to suffer a significant work accident. And, your danger of ending up in the emergency room after a serious fall goes up by 300% according to other studies.
And it may come as a shock that people with mild hearing loss had the highest risk among those with hearing loss. Maybe they don’t grasp that hearing loss of any type impairs a person at work.
Even if you have hearing loss, you can still be successful at work
You have a lot to offer an employer:
Hearing loss shouldn’t overshadow these. But it is often a factor. You might not even realize how huge an impact on your job it’s having. Take steps to decrease the impact like:
- When you’re talking with people, make certain you look directly at them. Try not to talk on the phone as much as possible.
- If a job is going to be beyond your capability you need to speak up. Your boss may, for example, ask you to go and do some work in an area of the building that can be really noisy. So that you can make up for it, offer to undertake a different task. By doing that, your boss won’t think you’re just trying to get out of doing work.
- Keep a well lit work space. Being able to see lips can help you follow even if you don’t read lips.
- Request that you get a hearing aid compatible (HAC) phone. The sound doesn’t go through background noise but instead goes straight into your ear. You will require hearing aids that are compatible with this technology to use one.
- In order to have it in writing, it’s not a bad plan to compose a sincere accommodations letter for your boss.
- Requesting a written overview/agenda before a meeting. Discussions will be easier to keep up with.
- Use your hearing aids while you’re at work every day, all the time. When you do, lots of of the accommodations won’t be necessary.
- Be aware that you aren’t required to divulge that you have hearing loss when you’re interviewing. And the interviewer can’t ask. But the other consideration is whether your hearing loss will have an effect on your ability to have a good interview. In that situation, you might decide to disclose this before the interview.
Hearing loss at work
Hearing loss can effect your work, even if it’s mild. But lots of the obstacles that neglected hearing loss can present will be resolved by getting it treated. We can help so give us a call!