For just a moment, picture that you have a job as a salesperson. Today, you’re having a very important call with a possible client. Your company is being considered for a job and several individuals from your business have come together on a conference call. As the call goes on, voices go up and down…and are at times hard to hear. But you’re getting most of it.
Cranking up the speaker just makes it sound more distorted. So you just read between the lines the best you can. You’re really good at that.
As you try to listen, the voices sound particularly muffled for about a minute. Then all of a sudden you hear, “so what can your company do to help us with this”?”
You panic. You didn’t catch the last few minutes and aren’t sure what issue they’re attempting to solve. This is your deal and your boss is counting on you. So now what?
Should you confess you didn’t hear them and ask them to reprise what they said? They’ll think you were distracted. Do you begin using a lot of sales jargon? No, they’ll see right through that.
Individuals go through situations like this every day when they are at work. Oftentimes, they try to pretend they’re okay and wing it.
So in general, how is your work being impacted by your hearing loss? Let’s find out.
A representative sampling of 80,000 individuals was collected by The Better Hearing Institute utilizing the same approach that the Census Bureau uses.
People who have neglected hearing loss earn, on average, $12,000 less per year.
Hey, that’s not fair!
Hearing loss effects your overall performance so it’s not hard to understand the above example. The deal couldn’t be closed, unfortunately. When they thought that the salesperson wasn’t paying attention to them, they went with someone else. They didn’t want to deal with a company that doesn’t listen.
His commission on this contract would have been over $1000.
The situation was misinterpreted. But that doesn’t change the effect on his career. If he was using hearing aids, imagine how different things may have been.
On the Job Injuries
A study reported in the Journal of The American Medical Association found that individuals with neglected hearing loss are almost 30% more likely to suffer a serious work accident. And, your danger of ending up in the emergency room after a significant fall goes up by 300% according to other research.
And it might come as a surprise that people with mild hearing loss had the highest chance among those with hearing loss. Perhaps they don’t grasp that hearing loss of any kind impairs a person at work.
How to have a successful career with hearing loss
Your employer has a great deal to gain from you:
Hearing loss shouldn’t overshadow these. However, that doesn’t mean it’s not a factor. You might not even know how huge an impact on your job it’s having. Take measures to decrease the impact like:
- Use your hearing aids while your working every day, at all times. When you do, many of the accommodations aren’t necessary.
- Request that you get a hearing aid compatible (HAC) phone. The sound goes directly into your ear and not through background noise. You will require hearing aids that are compatible with this technology to use one.
- If a job is going to be beyond your capability you need to speak up. Your boss might, for example, ask you to go and do some work in an area of the building that can be really loud. Offer to do something else to make up for it. If you do that, your boss won’t think you’re coping out.
- Before a meeting, find out if you can get a written agenda and outline. Discussions will be easier to keep up with.
- Compose a respectful accommodations letter to your boss. This way, you have it in writing.
- Be aware that you aren’t required to disclose that you have hearing loss during an interview. And it’s not okay for the interviewer to ask. Conversely, you may need to consider if your neglected hearing loss will impact your ability to have a successful interview. You will probably need to make the interviewer aware of your condition if that’s the situation.
- Face people when you’re speaking with them. Try to keep phone calls to a minimum.
- Make sure your work space is brightly lit. Being able to see lips can help you follow along even if you don’t read lips.
Hearing loss at work
Hearing loss can effect your work, even if it’s slight. But lots of the obstacles that untreated hearing loss can create will be solved by having it treated. We can help so contact us!