Success in the Workplace with ADHD & Dyslexia

Hello,

I have ADHD and Dyslexia. I have been trying to transition from school to the workforce for a long time, and I am almost there! I have a potential job opportunity working as an occupational therapist, and I was wondering if anyone has advice about what to do when starting a new job...

1. How do you manage/process all the new information being thrown at you?

2. How do you communicate your needs at the workplace? Do you disclose your learning disability?

3. What kind of systems helps you stay organized?

4. What strategies do you use to be productive?

5. How do you form relationships with coworkers on a superficial level?

That's all for now. Thank you in advance!

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2 Replies

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  • I work from home for a high tech company in Silicon Valley.

    1. How do you manage/process all the new information being thrown at you?

    It takes me a really long time to synthesize information. I always need to understand the context compared to other elements (process, tools, people, etc).

    A. When I learn from written, I need quiet.

    B. I take notes as I go along for questions I want to ask.

    C. I share my questions and even some process or training improvements for the next person.

    D. I do need to refresh my knowledge or I lose it, so if I know I need to use information for a long time I put it into practice as often as possible.

    2. How do you communicate your needs at the workplace? Do you disclose your learning disability?

    This is always a tough one. Get to know your environment before making a decision. I have worked in high tech since 1999 and have only disclosed it to a manager twice. I did it so they could understand if I struggled and to ask for ideas to be a better contributor. They both appreciated it.

    In some cases people will disclose this to HR. I would be careful if you are not a full-time employee or if you work in a state, country that does not have a strong positive view of ADA law in the workplace.

    3. What kind of systems helps you stay organized?

    There are some things that are not specifically for ADHD like alerts and notifications in email etc. I use those but if I don't recheck it then I have an inbox with 20 red flags I have ignored. :)

    4. What strategies do you use to be productive?

    Quiet is #1 when I am alone. For a therapist you need to ask lots of questions and do your research.

    I also give myself stretching and meditation time. Some kind of mental reset for 5-10 min is important. You deserve it.

    5. How do you form relationships with coworkers on a superficial level?

    - Ask them about themselves. Share about you. Talk about the work you are doing and your experience (or lack of). Ask for advise. Most people love to share it.

  • WOW! Thank you SO much! It has been especially hard to find advice about this subject. This means a lot to me. Thank you again!!!

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