Interviews are often the first job difficulty faced by those with Asperger’s Disorder. Their unusual language and poor ability to interact with others may result in failure to get hired despite having the necessary skills. An employment counselor or therapist can provide training and rehearsal in interviewing skills.
Once on the job, those with Asperger’s Disorder report having trouble keeping their positions. They describe that the social skills required to function in the work setting are just too overwhelming. They report it is easier to work in smaller settings with fewer people to deal with and less activity and confusion going on. Even with small work environments, the Asperger’s Disorder adult finds that too much of his mental and emotional energy is spent trying to interpret the words and behaviors of his coworkers, as well as trying to make sure he makes the correct choice about his own words and actions.
Some report not knowing what topics are acceptable to talk about and what topics are considered inappropriate. It is like working in a foreign country where you only speak a little bit of the language and know only a few of the customs. The amount of effort it takes to navigate the social arena of a job interferes with actually doing the job.
• Finding work at level of education/ability
• Keeping a job long-term
• Getting along with coworkers
• Sensory overload
• Coping with the unpredictable
• Learning unwritten rules of the job
• Failing to ask for help or clarification
• Socially inappropriate behavior
• Misinterpreting others’ words/actions
• Easily frustrated
• Time management
• Presenting well in interview
• Inability to work in a group
• Need for excessively precise expectations
• Poor organization
• Difficulty remembering verbal instructions