Happy Valentine’s, my friend. Maybe your mind is on your special date this evening or perhaps it’s on Singles Awareness Day (It’s legit, look it up!). Regardless, allow me to turn our attention from that ever-so-cute and chubby cupid to that ever-so-overwhelming and important job hunt.
Take heart, folks who are blind or visually impaired can be successfully employed. Case in point—browse APH CareerConnect’s success stories and note the variety of jobs held by people with visual impairments.
Yes, it’s possible for people with visual impairments to secure jobs, as well as exceed expectations and advance in careers. I think this begs the question for first-time job seekers, what does it take to land the job and perform well?
Let’s focus today on what it takes to land the job, and thereafter we’ll focus on what it takes to excel in the job.
- It takes sound blindness-specific skills such as Orientation and Mobility, braille or alternative literacy/ communication, assistive technology, and organizational techniques.
- It takes courteous social skills. This entails using proper body language which will be visually interpreted.
- It takes presenting oneself professionally, with good hygiene and mature clothing choices.
- It takes knowledge of one’s skill sets. Think about what you have to offer an employer; be aware of what job accommodations you need to excel.
- It takes exploring careers which match your skill sets. I recommend the free, accessible Job Seeker’s Toolkit course to help.
- It takes the ability to find job leads.
- It takes researching potential jobs.
- It takes building a resume, writing cover letters, and likely filling out job applications.
- It likely takes disclosing a visual impairment.
- It takes preparing for an interview, including preparing to address liability, accessibility, and transportation.
APH CareerConnect is here to guide you through these processes. Here you can gather expertise and ask questions. However, don’t forgo working with a local service provider; if you do all of the above, you will be best equipped to land your first job—one I hope you will love!