October is ADHD Awareness Month. How aware are you of the impact of ADHD in the workplace?
“I have trouble paying attention in meetings.”
“My boss is upset because I’m always late.”
“I feel overwhelmed learning this new system.”
“I lost my job because I could never get my paperwork done in time.”
Statements like those above might come from anyone, though they are heard more commonly from people with ADHD.
The neurobiology of ADHD can lead to certain challenges in the workplace. For example,
people with ADHD tend to have trouble with the following work-related areas:
- Time management
- Listening and paying attention
- Following directions
- Completing assignments
- Attending to details
- Getting to work on time
- Speaking in turn
- Sitting still
- Controlling emotions
So: What’s important to know? What can I do?
**If you are an employer, learn all you can about ADHD. Welcome disclosure of ADHD without recrimination. Work with employees to support their strengths. Engage your employees in developing an ADHD-friendly workplace with opportunities for movement, collaboration, and even flex-time. Offer accommodations for employees with ADHD, including those identified by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Job Accommodation Network, here: http://askjan.org/media/adhd.html You can make a difference!
**If you have, or think you might have ADHD, here are eight steps to take and plenty of resources for learning more:
1. If you think you might have ADHD, get a diagnosis (ideally from a mental health provider familiar with ADHD)!
2. Seek treatment! Treatment can be several-pronged and should be with professionals experienced working with individuals having ADHD. Treatment can include:
3. Explore career options and consider a career assessment with a career counselor, therapist or coach who understands ADHD.
- Finding a Career that Works for You by Fellman
- O-Net Online
4. Be alert to potential ADHD challenges on the job:
5. Carefully consider the issue of disclosing your diagnosis.
6. Whether or not you decide to disclose, consider requesting accommodations, your legal right:
7. Work with a coach to develop helpful structures, skills, and routines.
8. Implement strategies for success:
Curious about how coaching might help you select a career path, structure and stick with a job search, and/or develop structures, skills and routines to promote successful employment? Contact me for a free half-hour consultation: www.lizahmann.com
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