Joined: 8 Apr 2007
Location: Nyack, NY
Joined: 11 Dec 2005
Joined: 11 Mar 2007
Location: Somewhere in the Atlantic
For me, it's more about the environment and management style of the workplace than the actual job.
I've done a lot of admin jobs, also I've worked as an events assistant and tour guide for an international summer school programme, I've also worked in video games, and as a music consultant and I am currently working as a disability access officer.
What made the difference between the jobs that were possible and those that weren't were:
1) How often people bugged me. Or, more specifically, the amount of face-to-face and verbal contact. In my current job, the main form of communication is by email, which is much better for me than the kind that requires direct social interaction.
2) Whether or not it is a quiet environment. I have sensory overload problems so I need QUIET. Most of the places I've worked have been reasonably quiet, which is good. I also need good lighting and natural light otherwise I get headaches and feel nauseous and tired all the time and on edge.
3) The attitide of your colleagues. I've worked in 2 jobs where I was bullied, 1 job where my contract wasn't renewed because, although they said on many occasions that they were pleased with the quality of my work, they didn't like having someone who was 'different' in the office and they didn't like the fact that I didn't go drinking at the pub with them all after work - they thought it was anti-social despite the fact that I was always polite to them. I also had a job offer withdrawn when they found out I had AS - so their general attitide towards disability is important.
4) I like jobs where I am left alone to get on with my work. I have had jobs in the past where things are set up so that you frequently have to get up and ask people for more work, or how to do things. I would much rather I was told what I needed to get done that week, and was then left alone to get on with it. I prefer instructions to be written step-by-step - I don't like having to ask people or have them explained verbally - I don't see any reason not to write things down. It saves people having to stop their work to come and show me what to do, and it is a lot easier for me to learn by a method that doesn't involve social interaction.
I also think it is important not to work somewhere where people are gossipping all the time or playing jokes or practical jokes (I don't understand these behaviours and they frighton and upset me). I need quiet environment where I am left alone to get on with work and only interrupted when absolutely necessary (and then, where possible I prefer the interruption to be via email).
5) I don't like it when people try to socialise me or try to 'find out' about me by asking me lots of questions, especially personal stuff like about my family and where I live and my interests - I get that they are trying to be nice, but as I find socialising difficult and sometimes unpleasant, I would prefer it if they left me alone and it was left up to me to decide to talk to them about myself when I feel safe and comfortable enough to do so.
6) I also avoid places that have 'unofficially' compulsory social events, like Christmas parties etc. If they do have such events, I ask to be excused as my disability means I cannot take these events - I'll either have a panic attack, or start stimming wildly (which I don't really want to do in front of work colleagues) or I'll collapse (seriously!).
7) I also like to have a physical barrier between myself and other employees - at work we have screens between our desks. They're not very high - if you sit up completely straight you can see right over them- so nothing too scary - but it's nice not to be sitting directly opposite someone with no barrier in between.
I like to have my own desk (or even just my own allocated drawer) - somewhere where I can leave my work and it will not be disturbed or interfered with by other people. Someone went through my desk and files at a previous work place and threw out important things without consulting me and I was really upset and actually felt quite violated. Where I work, I have my own desk and drawers and people don't go into them.
This is all I can think of for now - and it depends what kind of things you are interested and also the extent to which your AS interferes with your ability to work.
Joined: 15 Apr 2007
Location: Bath (Uni) Cambridge (Home), UK.
The idea of working in an office environment frightens me no end. I need to be on my own, and preferably outside (blame a countryside upbringing). Thats why I want to work for the Environment Agency when I leave Uni, so that I can go and examine rivers and soil and stuff and make maps about them, I find that interesting and I would enjoy it far more.
Yes there are two paths you can go by, but in the long run, there's still time to change the road you're on.
Joined: 28 Sep 2006
Joined: 15 Mar 2007
Location: Rhode Island,USA
I drive a school bus part time so I have most of the don't do's in the previous post. Sensory overload, I'm sure you can imagine the overload I get on a bus full of kids. I have the gossiping ladies in the office. I have the company parties. But hey. free pizza is free pizza, I ain't gonna turn that down no matter how Aspie I am.
I am pretty much over the whole driving kids to school thing. It's been 4 years now and like I said, I'm over it. Just haven't figured out what to do next.
I don't think I would say no to a job that I really wanted to try just because of Aspergers. It's limiting growth and just because you think the worst doesn't mean it's going to happen. You may be surprised.
Joined: 27 Apr 2007
Location: The Liberator flight deck
Joined: 6 Mar 2007
Joined: 11 Mar 2007
Location: Somewhere in the Atlantic
Games tester <heaven>
I worked in games for a while - I worked on the music and sound design and I also did some testing.
I really enjoyed the work but they got rid of me because they didn't like the fact that I had AS- they just wanted another clone and they couldn't cope with the fact that I was different, despite the fact that they made it clear on many occasions that they were very pleased with the quality of my work - it was just me they didn't like and they couldn't deal with the fact that I couldn't socialise with them outside of work.
Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Location: Detroit, Michigan
I've gone through a number of IT-related jobs over the years and I've found that in the end programming is what really does it for me. I used to sell myself as the universal programmer/admin type but after a decade of being on call almost constantly I finally snapped and ended up losing my job late last summer. It took a few months for me to get back in the game (and even now, the fact that I actually *lost* a job still plays hell with my confidence) but I finally have managed to settle into a job pattern that works for me: two part time jobs instead of one full time job. Both jobs are programming jobs but I go to one M-W-F and the other T-TH. I have found that this does wonders for my boredom and anxiety levels, because when work starts getting boring and/or frustrating I know I only have to make it to the end of the day, and then the next day I get to go to the other job and work on something else for a little while. I also prefer the comfort of having two independent income sources, especially with today's IT market.
Another nice thing about my new work arrangement is that one of my jobs is in an academic setting, and I am finding that this setting REALLY works well for me. The pay isn't as much as I make per hour at the other job, but it's very relaxing. My coworkers are mostly grad students and professors, so I'm surrounded by intelligent open-minded people and I find I really enjoy my time spent at that job. I swear it's also the largest concentration of female geeks I"ve ever seen in my life.
Quantum Mechanics -- the dreams stuff is made of
Joined: 7 Feb 2007
Location: Gulfport, MS
My favorite job was a three-month position as a researcher for a professor in the History Department. I made my own schedule, got to read all day, and worked independantly in the library (nice and quiet). This job made good use of my visual-spatial & reading skills (I'm a speed-reader). It also helped that it paid quite a good bit. I wish I could do it full-time. This is the job that made me realize I want to be a Research Librarian when I grow up. Heh. Right now I am an office manager/copywriter at a Real Estate firm. It sounds terrifying but the office is small, quiet and I have my own office to myself. However, I would rather not do this all my life as it is not very fulfilling or stimulating.
Mew mew mew, mew mew mew mew? Mew. Mew mew mew mew, mew. Mew mew, mew. Mew!
Joined: 3 Apr 2006
Something where social skills don't get in the way. You'd be surprised how many jobs this happens in.If I can't hold down a regular job when I finish college, I will just enter a trade like welding and go work in the oil patch. Everyone's a foul-mouthed redneck and noone really gives a s**t if you're crazy or look like a freak as long as you do your job.
Joined: 6 May 2007
I think the best job would be where your passion lies. It sounds dreamy, that is what my bf says but I have to work that way or I really do not give a s**t. I am considering starting my own business. It is scary and exciting. I have quit or been fired from all my jobs since uni. I have good credentials and am a hard worker but something is not working out. I feel like it is the worlds way of telling me to live up to my potential or deal with it.
Nobody puts baby in a corner.
Joined: 3 Jul 2004
Location: Houston, Texas
Joined: 28 Apr 2007
Location: Kent, England
Music Librarian was my favourite job, for many of the reasons set out by a previous poster (I manged, bought, sorted the stock, and my colleagues dealt with the public (sorry, customers); before that I enjoyed public library work - settled routine, change of work every two hours, but the cycle repeated every 8 hours ad nauseum.
But I was a cut-back, so ended up a civil servant in a legal office. The original job was fine - dealing with casework on my own, and I had my own cell (sorry room) in a small Victorian block in London and again was independent. However, recently, cjhanges in management - more intrusive, team working, barn-storming, and a move to a dreadful open-plan office (it was circular - imagine the tyre of a very big bicycle - there were 80 of us to a floor) severe sensory overload set in and I blew a fuse.
PS can anyone offer a suitable job to an A S and soon to be ex-civil servant (20 years loyal service to the Crown?) in London/Kent?
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