Stuttering is essentially a speech disorder that affects the general fluency of the person’s speech. A stutter may be of different types and does not sound the same on all people.
Oftentimes, stuttering is seen mostly in children. When kids have a complete idea of what exactly they want to say, but their language skills are not up to the mark, they may stutter while speaking. While most children outgrow this condition once they grow older, not all adults are free from this speech disorder.
People who stutter often have the same ambitions as those who don’t, and are just as intelligent and qualified to go out and get the job they want. Many employers wrongly assume that people who stutter would not be a suitable match for a job position that requires them to communicate with clients or the public.
Contrary to this belief, people who stutter have so much more to offer on the work front, which may often be masked by insecurities on their part, or misjudgment on the part of their employers. In fact, many people who have a stutter are excellent in their jobs and have achieved great success.
What Employers Can Do
One of the first things that employers should do is to consider the bigger picture. People who stutter are not bad communicators in general. Good communicators require good listening skills, empathy, diplomacy to a certain extent, and the ability to be thoughtful and meaningful when they do speak up. These qualities can easily be found in people who stutter but are often overlooked due to the lack of fluency in their speech. Employers must not be too quick to judge the capabilities of an individual simply because of their stutter. This potential candidate may have excellent past work and life experiences, all of which would prove valuable to the organization.
Second, it is important for employers to leave assumptions at the door. Most people believe that people who stutter do so because they are shy, nervous, or fearful of social situations. This is not true. Stuttering speech arises from certain genetic and neurological lapses and is not an indicator of the person’s emotions at a given time. Some stutterers may be the most confident people you have ever met, despite not being able to relay their thoughts with complete fluency. Approaching stuttering with an open mind will open up a lot more opportunities for the individual in question, as well as the organization they become a part of.
What Employees Can Do
Sometimes, people who stutter may not always acknowledge their condition due to the fear of losing their jobs or missing out on promotions. They may feel stressed about keeping their condition a secret, which will undoubtedly affect their job performance.
Employees who stutter should take an active approach towards their condition. They should opt for professional therapy or self-therapy to help them navigate their daily lives much more smoothly. They can make use of an anti-stuttering device or an electronic speech device to bring fluency to their speech.
In addition to this, employees who stutter should maintain transparency with their employers and managers, and remain open about the range of their capabilities. Doing so will establish a system of trust between the employer and employee, which will also allow them to witness greater professional success.
Stuttering is very common and is not an indicator of intelligence or confidence. If you are seeking help for your stutter, you can choose to try out a stuttering device or electronic speech device that will help you navigate your speech with much more fluency.