Yoh encourages their employees to bring their whole selves to work every day, which is exactly what I've accomplished with the support of my friends, family, and coworkers. After surviving the unthinkable from suffering a Grand Mal seizure and my journey to recovery and back to work, which I discussed in part one of this blog, I found community in the ADAPT (Abled and DisAbled Advocates Partnering Together) Employee Resource Group. I’d love to share more about our group’s accomplishments and impact on the disabled community.
ADAPT provides a support and communication network for employees to foster the personal and professional growth of people with diverse abilities to realize their aspirations and to facilitate and support a communication network for employees, family, and friends with disabilities.
Serving as a co-chair for ADAPT and watching it grow over the years has been extremely rewarding. We have hosted events and raised awareness for causes near to us. We are already planning our celebrations and fundraising efforts for National Epilepsy Awareness Month this coming November! Our festivities start in March with Purple Day - Epilepsy Awareness Day.
Through our company-wide learning platform, a series of training courses to educate employees on neurodiversity was established. This was a wonderful addition to our Neurodiversity Celebration Week, a worldwide initiative that challenges stereotypes and misconceptions about neurological differences. It’s important to know that despite having challenges, many individuals who are neurodiverse, such as myself, can have a successful career and be an asset to a company just as those who are neurotypical!
We’ve experienced leadership changes over the years, most recently with the retirement of ADAPT’s Executive Sponsor, Joe Ritzel. Joe’s desire and willingness to help hire those in the disability community have been both inspiring and motivating. ADAPT is excited to welcome our new Executive Sponsor, Kathleen King, and new co-chairs to our team. It is an exciting time to join ADAPT! Together we are always learning the needs of people with disabilities and how we can all be supportive in and out of the workplace.
Thaxton Family 2023
LIFE AT DAY & ZIMMERMANN
As for me, I am ever grateful to have found a career within the Day & Zimmermann enterprise. The work-life balance I have achieved by working remotely and having a flexible schedule allows me to accommodate doctor’s appointments and protect my overall safety, as driving can be dangerous for someone with epilepsy at times.
Leadership understands what I need to succeed and provides me with the tools to support me and meet me where I am on a daily basis. My Director, VP, SVP, and higher-up leaders are always willing to meet me where I am to help me reach my fullest potential.
Even the benefits offered as a Day & Zimmermann employee have made a huge difference, specifically with my prescription costs. My benefits and prescription plans are all automated, which is very accommodating and a big help for someone with memory loss.
Crystal celebrating Purple Day - Epilepsy Awareness Day with her son at his basketball game.
With the tools I’ve been given to succeed in my recruiting role, I am happy to say that I can do what I love each day. Connecting diverse talent with their dream careers is my passion, and I’m grateful I can have such a successful career and be an asset to my company.
If you are a person with disabilities in the workforce, I advise you to always put your health first. You can’t perform well if you are not feeling well. With proper management, you can receive the support to be your best and achieve the best. Don’t be afraid to speak up and be your authentic self in the workplace! If you are at the right place, your team will embrace you with openness and receptiveness, just like I have been.