Businessman worried about his hearing los at work

For just a moment, imagine that you have a job as a salesperson. Today, you’re having a very important call with a potential client. Your company is being considered for a job and numerous individuals from your company have come together on a conference call. As the call continues, voices rise and fall…and are sometimes hard to hear. But you’re fairly certain you got the gist of it.

And it sounds distorted and even less clear when you continue turning the volume up. So you just do your best at filling in the blanks. You’re really good at that.

As you listen, the voices sound particularly muffled for around a minute. Then all of a sudden you hear, “so what can your company do to help us with this”?”

You panic. You have no idea what their company’s problem is because you didn’t hear the last part of the discussion. This is your contract and your boss is counting on you. So now what?

Do you ask them to repeat themselves? They might think you weren’t paying attention. What about relying on some slick sales jargon? No, that will be too conspicuous.

People go through situations like this every day when they are at work. Sometimes, they try to pretend they’re okay and wing it.

But how is neglected hearing loss really affecting your work as a whole? Let’s see.

Lower wages

A representative sampling of 80,000 people was collected by The Better Hearing Institute utilizing the same approach that the Census Bureau uses.

They discovered that individuals who have untreated hearing loss make about $12,000 less per year than those who are able to hear.

That doesn’t seem fair!

We could dig deep to try to find out what the cause is, but as the illustration above shows, hearing loss can impact your general performance. The deal couldn’t be closed, regrettably. When they thought that the salesperson wasn’t paying attention to them, they went with someone else. They decided to go with a company that listens better.

He lost out on a commission of $1000.

It was just a misunderstanding. But how do you think this affected his career? If he was using hearing aids, think about how different things may have been.

Injuries on the job

A study revealed in the Journal of The American Medical Association discovered that people with untreated 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 serious fall increases by 300% according to other research.

And people with only mild hearing loss were at the highest risk, surprisingly! Maybe, their hearing loss is minor enough that they don’t even know about it.

Even if you have hearing loss, you can still be successful at work

You have a lot to offer an employer:

  • Confidence
  • Skills
  • Experience
  • Personality
  • Empathy

Hearing loss shouldn’t dominate these. But it is frequently a factor. It may be affecting your job more than you know. Here are some ways to decrease that impact:

  • Before a meeting, find out if you can get a written agenda and outline. Conversations will be easier to follow.
  • Speak up when a task surpasses your abilities. For instance, your boss might want you to cover for someone who works in a really loud part of the building. In order to make up for it, offer to take on a different task. By doing that, your boss won’t think you’re just trying to get out of doing work.
  • Be aware that you’re not required to disclose that you have hearing loss during an interview. And it isn’t okay for the interviewer to ask. But the other consideration is whether your hearing loss will have an impact on your ability to have a good interview. You will most likely need to make the interviewer aware of your condition if that’s the situation.
  • Make sure your work space is brightly lit. Even if you’re not a lip reader, looking directly at them can help you discern what’s being said.
  • Use your hearing aids while you’re at work every day, all the time. When you do this, lots of of the accommodations won’t be necessary.
  • Face people when you’re speaking with them. Try not to have phone conversations as much as you can.
  • Ask for a phone that is HAC (Hearing Aid Compatible). The sound goes straight into your ear and not through background noise. You will require hearing aids that will work with this technology to use one.
  • In order to have it in writing, it’s not a bad idea to draft up a respectful accommodations letter for your boss.

Working with hearing loss

Even if you have mild hearing loss, it can still impact your work performance. But having it treated will frequently minimize any obstacles you face with untreated hearing impairment. Give us a call right away – we can help!

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The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. To receive personalized advice or treatment, schedule an appointment.
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