Workplace Pathways to Employment

There are various agencies and organizations that can help with your employment search. This content reviews secondary transition programs; post-secondary education programs; career fairs; internships; state departments of rehabilitation; and other community based programs. In addition, it reviews adjustments to existing programs, such as supported employment and customized employment.

Part II-Workplace Pathways to Employment (PDF)

Workshop

Workshop #7: Workplace Pathways to Employment (PDF)

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Workplace Job Searching Strategies

Finding a job is a job in and of itself. You need to learn this reality and the related skills in order to be successful. This content covers the basics about how to prepare yourself for the process, as well as the art of networking; your virtual look; resumes; cover letters; preparation and practice; taking the stage; and the subtleties of the job interview.

Part II-Workplace Job Searching Strategies (PDF)

Workshop

Workshop #6: Workplace Job Searching Strategies (PDF)

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Workplace Patterns

As we know, people are called “individuals” because each person is different. Each person has unique tendencies, traits, or styles that make them who they are. This is true in school, in your community, and, of course, in the workplace. The more you understand about these differences, the better equipped and prepared you’ll be to effectively communicate and work with each individual you meet.

The purpose of this content is to discuss these differences. Just because people are different from each other and from you, it doesn’t mean that they are less capable. It just means that they see things from a different experience, culture, or perception. When you learn how to understand some of these differences, you’ll begin to recognize that these differences make for richer work teams and broader perspectives, both of which most often lead to better results for an organization when all its individuals work together effectively.

Part II-Workplace Patterns (PDF)

Workshop

Workshop #5: Workplace Patterns (PDF)

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Workplace Job Skills

You need to discover, define, and learn how to effectively communicate your job technical or hard skills to get the job you want. While you’re not a product, you are selling your labor in the competitive marketplace. And, you’re competing with other similar products (other job seekers) to get the sale (job). As a result, you must further prepare yourself to be able to explain why your labor is something the employer should buy (hire) over other job candidates.  This content will teach you how to identify, understand, and communicate effectively what exactly you can do for an employer.

Part II-Workplace Job Skills (PDF)

Workshop

Workshop #4: Workplace Job Skills (PDF)

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Workplace Practices

Employees who are successful quickly learned the key “tricks of the trade” or the workplace rules of the road discussed in this content. Employees who don’t quickly learn these rules most often get in trouble. The interesting thing about these workplace rules is that nobody ever teaches them to you before you go to the world of work. Either you learn them through trial and error or not at all, in which case you will likely end up failing in your job.

In any case, for most new workers, it takes a long time, as well as repeated mistakes, before they understand the value of these workplace rules. In other words, you usually learn them the hard way by making mistakes. That’s too bad because you can avoid these mistakes with some basic instruction on what the key practices are. Failure to learn them before you begin your career often results in delayed advancement, lost opportunities, or even getting fired. Fortunately, you can avoid these rookie mistakes if you study, learn, and follow these workplace practices sooner rather than later.

Part II-Workplace Practices (PDF)

Workshop

Workshop #3: Workplace Practices (PDF)

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Workplace Presence

Getting a job or promotion depends on making a good impression on the person who will make the decision to hire or advance you. Workplace presence is your professional “like-ability.” Do people find you interesting, talkative, attentive, funny, warm, nice, thoughtful, well groomed, appropriately dressed, etc.? If they do, they’ll begin to like you more than if you were not these things. When this begins to happen you’re on your way to convincing them that they want to work with you. Learn how to show a potential employer your workplace presence or like-ability as the first step in convincing them to hire you. Remember, when the door closes on the interview room, it’s just you with the job interviewer. The power of your workplace presence is a very important factor in getting the job you want.

Part II-Workplace Presence (PDF)

Workshop

Workshop #2: Workplace Presence (PDF)

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The Disability Factor

Having a known or visible disability can often create negative reactions or understandings about your employment potential. This is especially true if you express yourself in ways which reinforce these stereotypes. People, including many employers, may make inaccurate assumptions about what your potential is when they learn that you have a disability. These reactions can often be negative, so building your professional skills must start here.

This content explores the various ways you can best represent your disability in the world of work. The ideas and approaches that follow can vary based on your style and personality. Accept these ideas as important considerations in order to present yourself in the best possible way. Take these concepts as starting points for you to refine further in the ways that are most comfortable for you. One word of caution, however: while you can adapt these techniques to your circumstances, you should try not to stray too far from the basic truths and realities these practices represent.

Part I- The Disability Factor (PDF)

Workshop

Workshop #1: Managing Your Disability in Competitive Employment (PDF)

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Chapter 8: Retirement

This chapter offers bulletproof retirement strategies that people with disabilities can employ right now to improve economic self-sufficiency. Learn about everything from long-term investment and taking advantage of compound interest, to different ways to save money and still keep government benefits. More information can be found in Chapter 8 of the EQUITY book.

Chapter 8 Retirement (PDF)

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Tools

For a lot of people, retirement seems very far off, but if you plan for it now, your future self will thank you!

Retirement Planning

Use this retirement planning tool to help you see how much savings you will have after investing a certain amount per month. Just enter how much you will put into savings each month into “monthly contribution” and enter the interest rate on your investments into “interest rate.” Then, choose “number of years” to see your final savings!

Retirement Planning tool (Excel)

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Chapter 7: Self-Employment

There are several great opportunities for folks with disabilities when it comes to self-employment. Whether you want to start the next Silicon Valley garage start-up or just arrange a little side-hustle for extra dollars, this chapter can help get the creative juices flowing. More information can be found in Chapter 7 of the EQUITY book.

Chapter 7 Self-Employment (PDF)

Video

Tools

Though creating a full-fledged start-up may sound a little daunting, many highly successful people have a small side-hustle. Maybe you love to take pictures at weddings or you want to drive for a ride-share company. Feel free to get creative!

Small Business Planning

It’s time for self-employment! Use this sheet to calculate your start-up costs and how you will fund your business. Feel free to change the categories and amounts to fit your style – and once your “Extra Funds” is more than $0, you’re good to go!

Small Business Planning tool (Excel)

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