Work Regardless Week
From November 28th – December 2nd, Causeway is celebrating its third Work Regardless Week, a campaign that aims to show the value, strengths, and abilities that every person has regardless of the challenges that they face.
Have you ever been in an interview and felt that moment of panic when the interviewer asks, what is your biggest weakness? You freeze because, deep down, you know that there are plenty of things that you can talk about. Maybe you have trouble saying no to things or you don’t feel confident about your ability to handle conflict. Whatever the weakness, you know that in an interview, you want to put your best foot forward and talk about the things that make you a strong candidate. The practice of identifying weaknesses in yourself and reframing them to instead focus on how those weaknesses have led to opportunities to learn or overcome challenges is one of the most important tools when it comes to finding work.
The reality is, at work, there will likely be people with resumes that look almost exactly the same as yours, all highlighting your strengths, competencies, and skills. What helps people stand out is the ability to talk about their experiences and challenges and explain how those have shaped them.
What we call “lived experience” is an underrated strength that can be leveraged in career development. For someone who has gaps in their resume as a result of experiencing homelessness, they may be great at creative problem-solving to ensure they had the resources they needed. A person with anxiety who can recognize when they are feeling overwhelmed may be really good at setting boundaries and prioritizing tasks.
When we help people find work, a significant part of this journey is working with people to help them see their strengths and identify opportunities for growth.
SEEING YOUR STRENGTH
That’s why, this year for Work Regardless Week, we challenged people to practice seeing their strengths. We start with a deep internal reflection and we ask ourselves: What is something that you have always considered to be a weakness in yourself? Then we ask them to flip the script. How would you consider this part of yourself to be a strength?
“I’ve always thought my sensitivity was my weakness, but actually, it has allowed me to tap into my intuition which has led to better outcomes in my relationships, in my business, and in my life. Redefining your weakness and focusing on how it makes you stronger: this is what it means to work regardless.”Megan Kee, TwentyTwenty Arts
“I have always thought that being anxious was my weakness. But over time, I have realized that my anxiety just means I care about what I am doing and who I am with. While I will continue to decrease my amount of anxiety, I will keep reminding myself that it is a reflection of my love and care for what I do on a daily basis.”Helena Nikitopoulos, contributing writer, KBI Inspire Magazine
PARTICIPATE IN WORK REGARDLESS WEEK
If you want to participate in Work Regardless Week, here are some ways you can get involved:
- Join us for our virtual workshop: Seeing Your Strengths in Career Building hosted by Hailey Hechtman on December 1 @1-2pm. Registration is here.
- Follow us on social media and share our activity! Take a look at our toolkit for inspiration.
- We encourage everyone to practice seeing their strength and have conversations that challenge the negative stigma around hiring people with mental illness, disabilities, or other lived experiences
- If you are an employer looking for qualified candidates, get in touch with Causeway’s employment teams
- If you or someone you know are looking for work, please get in touch with our Intake office
- If you are someone looking to make a donation to help create more inclusive communities, please take a look at ways you can support us
- Tune in to An Hour to Give with Sam Laprade on Saturday and Sunday from 8-9am on City News 101.1fm to hear Sam and Hailey talk about Causeway and employment.