On December 9, 2015, Life Development Institute (LDI) welcomed Mr. Robert (Rob) Crawford, LDI’s CEO, who spoke about enhanced job readiness and employability for young adults who have Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other learning disabilities (LD). To many, this can be a difficult subject to address, as finding employment is a difficult venture for anyone seeking work. However, there is hope for each of us, including persons with ASD and LD, to find a job and develop a career that sustains the financial necessity of life as well as increase the quality and meaning in life.
During his presentation, Rob addressed the first best step in finding employment and career fulfillment, which is readiness. Being prepared to enter employment makes all the difference. At its onset, one needs to discover strengths alongside of interests. In spite of barriers that face persons with ASD and LD, understanding of expectations, development and practice of necessary workplace skills, and willing investment into the process can result in sustained success. Again, recognizing the benefit of being ready coupled with investment into this readiness makes all the difference.
As Rob was moving toward the conclusion of his presentation, he noted that obtaining a job is the easy part while keeping the job is the hard part. Imagine that reality! Achieving employment is the easy portion. Comprehending this point then leads one to understand that readiness must also include what happens after you are hired. Knowing that the primary questions for your employer are what can you do, what are you willing to do, and how will you fit in will then enable identification of how to prepare for your first day on the job as well as for those days that follow. Developing proper expectations along with correct skills that can be executed again and again will assist persons with ASD and LD in not only finding employment but also realizing a career that satisfies.
For a more detailed summary of Rob’s presentation, please email (LDI) at firstname.lastname@example.org.