Living with ADHD, or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder can present many challenges, not the least of which is the ability to find and hold down a meaningful job. The condition affects about one in every twenty Australians, so it’s more common than most people realize. It’s also more prevalent in boys than girls and often affects younger people.
Realizing that finding and keeping a job is definitely more challenging for individuals with ADHD, let’s take a look at some helpful tips for getting a job, as well as some of the best and most suitable industries and jobs for people with ADHD.
Apply For Jobs That Target Your Strengths
Everybody has strengths and weaknesses, whether they have ADHD or not. As someone living with ADHD, you will have certain strengths and also certain weaknesses that result from the condition. Step one is to define those strengths and weaknesses and then target jobs where your strengths will shine and where your weaknesses will be minimized.
A simple example of this is if your condition makes it hard for you to sit still for lengthy periods of time. Someone who is very hyperactive is likely going to struggle with a desk job. In this instance, you’ll want a role that sees you being more active and on the move rather than being forced to try and remain behind a desk all day. For this reason, many people with ADHD are attracted to industries such as hospitality, where you’re constantly active, and there is a lot of variety.
Also working as a first responder in emergency services can also be a very fulfilling role for someone with ADHD. Often, people with ADHD thrive when faced with intense or rather chaotic situations. Your natural desire to take action will take over.
In order for someone with ADHD to successfully find and hold down a job, it’s vital that you understand what your strengths and weaknesses are and then target job roles that play to your strengths.
Create a Resume That Highlights Your Skills
For some people living with ADHD, their work history may contain gaps or periods where they remained at certain jobs for only a short period of time. Rather than highlighting this kind of information in your resume, focus more on highlighting your strengths, your skills and any previous relevant experience you’ve had.
Another good idea is to tailor your resume for each job you apply for, focusing intently on the positives that are most relevant to the position.
Avoid listing previous employment in sequential order if it’s full of gaps or brief employment periods.
Seek Assistance From Disability Employment Services
As being diagnosed with ADHD is considered to be a disability in Australia, you may be eligible for assistance under the DES scheme. This scheme will provide you with the help you need to both find a suitable job and keep that job.
If you want to know more about how DES works, there is plenty of information on this Australian Government website.
DES is most often administered through a Workforce Australia provider (formerly known as a Jobactive provider). Workforce Australia providers are located all around the country, so you’ll be able to find one in your area.
Jobs To Target When You Have ADHD
We’ve already mentioned the hospitality industry and emergency services as two good options for people living with ADHD, but what else is suitable for someone with the condition?
You’ll want to find a position that offers plenty of variety so you don’t grow bored and easily lose focus. Jobs, where you get to move around a lot or be involved in creative activities, are also highly suitable.
Let’s list some examples for easy reference:
- Jobs in the health and fitness industry, such as a personal trainer or gym instructor
- Working creatively as a photographer, writer, video game creator, graphic designer, video producer, and more
- Non-repetitive factory and production environments
- Sales and marketing
- Disability support worker
- And more…
People with ADHD offer many skills and strengths when it comes to various sectors of the workforce. The trick is to target jobs that play on your strengths and minimize any weaknesses associated with having ADHD.