You Could be Missing a Lot if You're Having Trouble Hearing While You're at Work

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Businessman worried about his hearing los at work

Imagine 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 gathered to discuss whether to employ your company for the job. All of the different voices get a bit muddled and hard to understand. But you’re hearing most of it.

And it sounds distorted and even less clear when you continue turning the volume up. So you simply do your best, interpreting what’s being said the best you can. You’re very good at that.

There comes a point in the discussion where things get particularly difficult to hear. This is the point where the potential client asks “so exactly how will your firm help us solve this?””

You panic. You didn’t catch the last few minutes and aren’t certain what issue they’re trying to solve. Your boss is depending on you to seal this deal. So now what?

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

People go through scenarios 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 affected by your hearing loss? Let’s find out.

Unequal pay

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

Individuals who have neglected hearing loss earn, on average, $12,000 less per year.

Hey, that isn’t fair!

We could dig deep to attempt to find out what the cause is, but as the example above shows, hearing loss can affect your overall performance. The deal couldn’t be closed, regrettably. Everything was going very well until the client thought he wasn’t paying attention to them. They decided to go with a company that listens better.

His commission on this contract would have been more than $1000.

It was just a misunderstanding. But that doesn’t change the impact on his career. If he was wearing hearing aids, imagine how different things might 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 have a serious work accident. Studies have also revealed a 300% increased risk of having a serious fall and winding up in the emergency room.

And people with only slight hearing loss were at the greatest risk, surprisingly! Maybe they don’t realize that hearing loss of any kind impairs a person at work.

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

Your employer has a great deal to gain from you:

  • Confidence
  • Personality
  • Experience
  • Skills
  • Empathy

Hearing loss shouldn’t overshadow these. But it is often a factor. It may be impacting your job more than you realize. Take actions to lessen the impact like:

  • In order to have it in writing, it’s not a bad plan to write a respectful accommodations letter for your boss.
  • 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.
  • Know that you aren’t required to divulge 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 effect on your ability to have a good interview. In that case, you may decide to divulge this before the interview.
  • Request a phone that is HAC (Hearing Aid Compatible). The sound doesn’t go through background noise but rather goes directly into your ear. You will need hearing aids that are compatible with this technology to use one.
  • Face people when you’re conversing with them. Try to keep phone calls to a minimum.
  • Speak up when a task surpasses your abilities. Your boss might, for example, ask you to go and do some work in a part of the building that can be really loud. So that you can make up for it, offer to take on a different job. In this way, it never seems like you’re not doing your part.
  • Never neglect using your hearing aids at work and all of the rest of the time. If you’re wearing your hearing aids you may not even require many of the accommodations.
  • Before attending a meeting, ask if you can get a written agenda and outline. Discussions will be easier to keep up with.

Working with hearing loss

Even if you have mild hearing loss, it can still effect your performance at work. But getting it treated will frequently get rid of any obstacles you face with neglected hearing loss. We can help so contact us!

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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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