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Communication in the Workplace around Disability

Ryan Compton - Centre for Resolution
Thank you to Ryan Compton, Director of Centre for Resolution for this guest blog.

As an employee, having a disability may feel intimidating or lower your confidence, creating a barrier to independence whilst at work. As an employer, it can also present tension and discomfort if you do not know how to communicate with someone with a disability. Yet effective communication is the cornerstone to success in any working environment.

Disability at work coaching

Coaching for disability at work provides an effective solution for both parties. Coaching will be conducted by trained leaders who will have years of experience, both in the disability sector and in the workplace environment.

Resolving conflict with mediation

If there is a general lack of communication, and as an employer you are unsure of what to do, conflict can easily arise which may lead to the disabled person feeling marginalised or discriminated. If this is the case, another option to resolve this is disability mediation.

With this latter approach, the two parties can meet to discuss the issue in a calm atmosphere of engagement, with a mediator who is skilled in disability issues. The discussions that take place will be confidential and non-judgemental, helping both sides to enjoy a successful and amicable outcome.

Training for disability awareness

Sometimes, an employer and the workforce may gain from disability awareness training. This can help resolve many challenges and difficulties which can undermine the confidence of someone with a disability, leading to lowered performance.

With appropriate training, staff and employers can gain a better understanding of the many different areas which can often cause difficulty for people with disabilities.

Communication and awareness of disability issues

Being aware of the importance of independent access to the working environment can make a big difference to how someone in a wheelchair, or who has hearing or sight impairment, may feel. Both self-esteem and confidence can significantly rise, leading to a healthier atmosphere in which everyone feels happier.

By learning how to communicate effectively, using the right terminology, a disabled person will feel more relaxed and included, leading to increased motivation and confidence.

Retaining and welcoming returning employees

A significant advantage of having good communication skills with disabled members of your team, is that it also helps with their retention of these employees, making them feel worthwhile and less isolated.

A disability mediator, coach or training consultant will also possess extensive knowledge of organisations, which can help with further added support. Workplace assessments, counselling or funding may be available through schemes such as Access to Work.

For more information about Centre for Resolution’s disability services please visit their website.

For more information about Centre for Resolution please click the link. They also have a Facebook Group called Everything Disability that you may wish to join, where best practice and knowledge is shared about disability.


Telephone: 01905 21717 Centre for Resolution logo