Can’t Hear Well at Work? You Might be Missing More Than You Think

Businessman worried about his hearing los at work

Imagine for a minute you’re a salesperson. Today, you’re having a very important call with a possible client. Your company is being looked at for a job and numerous individuals from your company have gathered on a conference call. As the call goes on, voices go up and down…and are at times hard to hear. But you’re pretty certain you got the gist of it.

Cranking the speaker up just makes it sound more distorted. So you simply do your best, reading between the lines. You’re really 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 hear the last few minutes and aren’t certain what problem they’re trying to solve. This is your deal and your boss is counting on you. So now what?

Should you acknowledge you didn’t hear them and ask them to repeat what they said? They’ll think you were distracted. What about relying on some slick sales jargon? No, that will be too obvious.

Individuals go through situations like this every day when they are at work. Sometimes, they try to pretend they’re okay and wing it.

But how is untreated hearing loss actually affecting your work as a whole? The following will help us find out.

Lower wages

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

They found that people who have untreated hearing loss make around $12,000 less per year than people who can hear.

Hey, that’s not fair!

We could dig deep to attempt to find out what the cause is, but as the example above demonstrates, hearing loss can affect your overall performance. Sadly, he didn’t close the deal. When they got the impression that the salesperson wasn’t paying attention to them, they went with someone else. They didn’t want to work with a firm that doesn’t listen.

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

It was just a misunderstanding. But that doesn’t change the effect on his career. How might things have been different if he were wearing his hearing aids?

Injuries on the job

Individuals who have neglected hearing loss are almost 30% more likely to sustain a serious on-the-job injury according to a study conducted by the American Medical Association. Studies also show a 300% increased danger of having a serious fall and ending up in the emergency room.

And people with only slight hearing loss were at the greatest risk, unexpectedly! Maybe, their hearing loss is minor enough that they don’t even know about it.

How to have a prosperous career with hearing loss

Your employer has a great deal to gain from you:

  • Skills
  • Experience
  • Personality
  • Empathy
  • Confidence

Hearing loss shouldn’t dominate these. But it is frequently a factor. You may not even realize how big an impact on your job it’s having. Here are some ways to lessen that impact:

  • Write a respectful accommodations letter to your boss. By doing this, you have it in writing.
  • Asking for a written overview/agenda before attending a meeting. Conversations will be easier to keep up with.
  • Request a phone that is HAC (Hearing Aid Compatible). The sound goes straight into your ear instead of through background noise. You will need hearing aids that are compatible with this technology to use one.
  • If a task is going to be beyond your capability you need to speak up. For instance, your boss may want you to cover for somebody who works in a really loud area. Offer to do something else to make up for it. By doing that, your boss won’t think you’re coping out.
  • Look directly at people when you’re talking to them. Try not to talk on the phone as much as possible.
  • Use your hearing aids while you’re at work every day, at all times. When you do this, lots of of the accommodations aren’t necessary.
  • Be aware that you’re not 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 successful interview. In that case, you might decide to disclose this before the interview.
  • Keep a well lit work space. Even if you don’t read lips, being able to see them can help you understand what’s being said.

Hearing loss at work

Hearing loss can impact your work, even if it’s slight. But having it treated will frequently get rid of any barriers you face with neglected hearing loss. We can help so call us!

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Schedule an appointment to see if hearing aids could benefit you.