Job Hunting Tips for People with Disabilities
Finding a good job is not an easy task even for young and promising college graduates, who are full of enthusiasm and desire to soar to new heights. If one has a disability, he may worry that it will limit his job prospects or that he won't be able to get a job offer at all. There is a bias that a disabled employee in one place will carry over into others and that will create difficulties.
In fact, there are various government-backed programs and awareness-raising initiatives in many countries which are designed to help the society and disabled people to reduce some disparities, which still exist in our world. People with disabilities have a fair chance of working and these tips will help boost chances of success.
1. Know Your Rights
You must know your rights, whether you have physical or learning disability, every disabled person has a right to respect, equality, fairness, and understanding at the present or/and new workplace. As a rule, in the USA, in the UK, European countries disabled workers and unemployed, looking for a job, are legally protected against discrimination. They have a right and must be legally entitled to fair treatment while recruiting, promotion and in terms of salary. These rights also imply the fact that the workplace of a disabled employee must be accessible.
2. Define Your Strengths
Every job hunter is selling his skills, knowledge, and experience to the prospective employers and it goes without saying that it is necessary to sell the good points only. It is necessary to identify the strengths, qualities and personality traits one has which HR managers would definitely like. It is possible to manage to highlight the skills, make a good self-presentation (with the help of your resume, CV or while Skype-interview), and show the employers that you are worth hiring.
3. Make Use Of Disability
In fact, disability can bring benefits if you are applying for a job. The thing is that being disabled does not mean being ‘imperfect' - it means having extra skills. Disabled people have to learn how to navigate their way around the world, which was not designed for them (to put it bluntly); all the time they have to develop skills like problem-solving, overcoming obstacles, abilities to think creatively, being innovative, persistent and determined. Also, it is possible to take advantage of assistive technologies that can make one faster and more accurate than colleagues, who have no disabilities.
4. Use Modern Technologies
There are good websites and social media networks like, LinkedIn, which can help showcase your skills, experience, and positive professional image. Many HR managers now are actively using them in order to find the candidates. Moreover, there are many resources which can educate you or help acquire necessary skills.
5. Do Not Make Accent On Your Disability
For example, if you can't get up the stairs or disability is evident, it is better to briefly acknowledge it (ahead of time) and then go to ways you can do the work. It is necessary to accentuate that you can confront it and that does not affect the ability to do the job well.
6. Show, Do Not Tell
Just like the other job candidates, it is necessary to demonstrate that you are the best applicant for the position. You can point to the past jobs, internships or volunteering, some experience which will impress the hirers.
And here is the last tip: always be confident in yourself; the feeling of confidence can have a huge impact on the prospective hirers. If you feel confused or a lack of self-confidence, work on boosting your self-confidence before the interview. You have much more to show this world than you think.