By Cindy Bahl
If you are like many of us, you have been unemployed at one time or another. You might have felt like I did during my 7 months “between jobs”, experiencing a variety of emotions. The spectrum for me ranged from the excitement of having some “free time” to denial that sounded like, “how could this happen to me?” Feelings like discouragement, depression and doubt around self-worth were the common enemies of my soul. Like many of us, my self-esteem, independence and basic existence since the age of 16 has been in my career (since 11 if you count babysitting!). But for 7 months, I applied to positions for which I was very qualified and that matched my skill set and got very few interviews or opportunities. I experienced what many job seekers with disabilities experience every day even in this economy of low unemployment.
At the recent Amplify Rock Stars event, our guest speaker, Jeff Akin, Manager of Imaging, Records Management Systems with The State of Oregon asked attendees this very question: “How many of you in this room have ever been unemployed?” By a show of hands, it seemed that most of us could relate. He threw down a challenge to the employers in the room and stated, “As employers, we have the golden ticket, we have jobs.”
I challenge you to take 10 minutes out of your work day and listen to the whole story from Jeff. It will get you thinking about unemployment and what you can do to tap in to the potential of people with disabilities who are often under-utilized. This is a diverse group of motivated people who have the skills and abilities to meet business needs, to contribute to a team and to society in a meaningful and dignified way. Isn’t that what we all want?
SAVE THE DATE
2nd Annual Amplify Success! Event at Nike WHQ – October 18, 2018!