Just picture for a minute you’re a salesperson. Now picture that you have a call scheduled today with a really important client. Multiple representatives from their offices have come together to talk about whether to employ your company for the job. All of the various voices get a little jumbled and difficult to understand. But you’re pretty certain you got the gist of it.
And it sounds distorted and even less clear when you keep turning the volume up. So you just do your best at filling in the blanks. You’re quite 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 assist us with this”?”
You freeze. You have no idea what their company’s issue is because you didn’t hear the last part of the conversation. Your boss is depending on you to close this deal. So now what?
Do you ask them to repeat themselves? They’ll think you were distracted. Do you begin using a lot of sales jargon? No, they’ll see right through that.
People go through situations like this every day when they are at work. Oftentimes, they try to pretend they’re fine and wing it.
But how is neglected hearing loss actually impacting your work as a whole? The following will help us find out.
The Better Hearing Institute questioned 80,000 individuals utilizing the same technique the Census Bureau uses to get a representative sampling.
Individuals who have disregarded hearing loss earn, on average, $12,000 less per year.
Hey, that’s not fair!
We could dig deep to try to figure out what the cause is, but as the example above shows, hearing loss can affect your general performance. Sadly, he couldn’t close the deal. When they thought that the salesperson wasn’t paying attention to them, they pulled out. They decided to work with a company that listens better.
His commission on this deal would have been more than $1000.
It was only a misunderstanding. But how do you think this impacted his career? If he was wearing hearing aids, imagine how different things could have been.
Injuries on at work
People who have untreated hearing loss are almost 30% more likely to sustain a significant workplace injury according to a study carried out by the American Medical Association. And, your risk of ending up in the emergency room after a significant fall increases by 300% according to other research.
And it might come as a surprise that individuals with minor hearing loss had the highest risk among those who have hearing loss. Maybe, their hearing loss is mild enough that they don’t even know about it.
Even if you have hearing loss, you can still have a successful career
Your employer has a great deal to gain from you:
Hearing loss shouldn’t overshadow these. But it is frequently a factor. You may not even recognize how big an impact on your job it’s having. Here are a few ways to decrease that impact:
- Before attending a meeting, ask if you can get a written agenda and overview. Conversations will be easier to follow.
- Ask for a phone that is HAC (Hearing Aid Compatible). The sound doesn’t go through background noise but instead goes straight into your ear. In order to utilize this technology you will need a hearing aid that’s appropriate.
- Write a respectful accommodations letter to your boss. This way, you have it in writing.
- Understand that during a job interview, you’re not required to divulge that you have hearing loss. And the interviewer can’t ask. Conversely, you may need to think about if your neglected hearing loss will affect your ability to interview well. In that case, you may choose to reveal this before the interview.
- Face people when you’re speaking with them. Try not to talk on the phone as much as you can.
- Keep a brightly lit work space. Even if you’re not a lip reader, being able to see them can help you discern what’s being said.
- Never disregard using your hearing aids while you’re working and all of the rest of the time. When you do this, lots of of the accommodations aren’t necessary.
- Speak up when a task surpasses your abilities. For example, your boss might want you to cover for somebody who works in a really loud part of the building. Offer to do a different job to make up for it. This way, it will never seem like you aren’t doing your part.
Working with hearing loss
Hearing loss can impact your work, even if it’s slight. But many of the obstacles that untreated hearing loss can present will be resolved by getting it treated. Give us a call right away – we can help!