Image: Micro Learning graphic with colored diamonds with icons and text. From left to right, (orange) Targeted, (teal) Just in Time, (navy) Retention-boosting, (green) Mobile friendly, (purple) Enganging, (light blue) Cost-effective.


The Simple Truth: Everyone Deserves a Chance to Explore Their Passions!

Victoria Boateng found her voice, purpose and employment when those who listened and believed in her helped her find and learn Djembe (African drum).  Listen to her advice for those supporting people with disabilities!

Please watch this video from Victoria Boateng (27 seconds):

Check out Victoria's website:

"How" vs "Can": Which Question Is Better, and Why?

The question you ask matters!

Here's why asking "How?" matters...

Can?                                    How?

Barrier-focused Solution-focused
Limits Creativity
Can I picture success? How could success happen?


Please watch this video from Robyn Slocom (30 seconds): 

How (and why) to Build Trust with People You Support: 4 Simple Steps

It is vital to build relationships and trust to support people well.  Here are some tips: 

  • Spend informal time together just to get to know each other 
  • Be patient 
  • Let the person direct their activities and give choices 
  • Don’t start with your own agenda, but work with them to develop their own plan 


Please watch this video from Lance and Chuck Goodwin on how they built trust (1 minute): 


Boost Your Discovery Insights with These 6 Simple Questions

What Insights do I want to uncover?

  •        Where will they shine?
  •        What are they passionate about?
  •        When are they happiest? Most engaged?
  •        What are their learnable skills?
  •        What vocational themes are they drawn to? and
  •        What’s Next?

Top 6 Reasons Discovery is KEY

Discovery is an ESSENTIAL part of getting to know your job seekers. Here are 6 reasons why: 

    • Creates a relationship 
    • Shows the client’s advocates that you care 
    • Helps you understand the client’s skills 
    • Creates ideas for Job Development 
    • Creates great job matches 
    • Helps you understand support needs for coaching 

Please watch this video from Casey Serquinia (1 minute):

You've Got to "Show Up": Here's Why

I want you to ask questions.  You are necessary for us to have even a snowballs chance of gaining those things that you take for granted, a job, a home of our own. My disability doesn’t make me less human. You’ve got to show to up to change things.  You’ve got to show up to make a difference.

- Jeff Grace, recipient and provider of services  

Please watch this video from Jeff Grace (1.25 minutes): 


4 Great Tips You Can Use to Overcome Tough Communication Challenges

Are you stuck trying to figure out how to communicate with someoneyou support?

Tips on communication: 

    • How is the person communicating now?
    • What have they used in the past?
    • Use a communication chart 
    • Request a communication assessment

Try these tips! 

Please watch this video from Debra McLean (1 minute):

Is It The Right Job? 4 ESSENTIAL Things You Must Know

      • Know the person’s skills 
      • Know the work environment is accessible 
      • Ensure the person is comfortable 
      • Ensure the person is empowered

  Please watch this video from Ivanova Smith (1 minute):


4 Top Mistakes for New Job Starts

Supporting someone on a new job? Here's what you should NEVER do

      1. Start the job immediately after an offer – without advance preparation time for the employer, supported employee and team  
      2. Learn tasks “on the job” – without knowing in advance the expectations 
      3. Fail to identify sensory issues for which your client may need accommodations 
      4. Tell coworkers to talk only with you – instead of supporting the employee to build relationships and natural support.  

Want better strategies for job start success?  

Please watch this video from Anne-Marie Lake (1.25 minutes):

Should You Disclose a Disability? 3 Important Factors you Need to Consider

It is important for you to understand a person’s rights re: disability disclosure.   

    • It is the person's decision when or if to disclose their disability (you may not without permission)
    • Employers can ask a person if they will be able to perform the “essential functions of the job with or without accommodations”
    • Generally there is no obligation to disclose disability to an employer unless there is a need for an accommodation

Please watch the video version of this tip with Jim Corey:

Click here to learn more:

What the Heck is an IRWE and How Is it Helpful to people on SSI?

Impairment Related Work Expenses (IRWEs) allow a person to keep more SSI/SSDI when a beneficiary pays certain expenses out of pocket if:  

    • It is paid by the beneficiary 
    • It is related to the impairment /disability 
    • It enables the person to work 
    • It is reasonable in price 

Example expenses include medications, job coaching, medical devices/supplies/services, and some transportation 

Please watch this video from Scott Leonard (1 minute): 

View this fact sheet: 


The One Infographic You Really Need for Job Development Success

Would a quick visual of Job Development activities be helpful in your work as an employment consultant?

See it, and hear how it is used in this short video excerpt with Aimee Sharp (1 min):

Check out the full session "How to Use a Business Analysis as a Marketing Tool"

Top Job Developer Explains: 8-Step Process to Asking for a Job

    1. Environmental Analysis - initial observation- get information about who the decision maker is and a good time to meet them.
    2. Cold call - Introduction to decision maker and ask for a job tour/informational interview ​ 
    3. Job Tour/Informational interview
    4. Follow up meeting to explain what you do ask for a job analysis ​ 
    5. Job/needs analysis​ 
    6. Proposal presentation​ 
    7. Visual resume presentation and negotiate proposal​ 
    8. Interview job candidate​

Note: Steps 4-7 may take additional meetings or may flow quickly and easily.  Content from Aimee Sharp.

What is a Job Analysis, and Why Do You Need One for Job Development?

Job analysisis the process of studying a job to determine which activities and responsibilities it includes and the necessary qualifications and skills.

A good job analysis allows you to create a customized employment proposal to meet the needs of the business and your job seekers. 

A business can use job analysis data to assist with their own workforce planning, recruitment and selection, career planning, training and development, compensation, health, safety and security, and risk management.

Watch this video from Aimee Sharp (1 minute):

How to Build Your Bank of Businesses: 5 Simple Tactics

 Consider every interaction with a business a way to build a relationship 

      • Be open-minded and nimble-thinking about current and future job seekers 
      • Schedule a time to follow up even if the employer seems uninterested in Supported Employment at the onset
      • Schedule follow ups in your calendar, so you don’t forget 
      • If the business isn’t a good fit for current job seekers they likely will be for someone you support in the future

Please watch this video from Charly Walters (30 seconds):  

What is Community Mapping and Why is it a Great Tool for Job Searches?

Community mapping is a helpful tool to find and explore opportunities nearby.

      • Start with the job seeker’s interests and skills
      • Research places in their communitybroadly associated with those interests and skills 
      • Map them on paper or use online mapping tools
      • Decide which places to go explore
      • Go to those places and ask for information about what they do there (don’t ask for a job, just information)

Please watch this video from Dan Rutten (1 minute):


5 Reasons for hiring People with Disabilities: The Business Case

It is crucial for Employment Specialists to be able to explain to businesses the benefits of hiring people with disabilities, including:

  • Free resources exist to help find the right matches, hire, and train them
  • When a good match is made and there is support, employees will have better performance and retention
  • They draw in new customers because people like to support businesses that hire them
  • They spur innovation and universal design
  • They have a positive impact on business culture   

 Please watch this video version from Jim Corey (30 seconds):

Top Job Developers Use This Easy Online Research Tool: You Can Too!

Check out!

      • Search for your job seekers' job skills by keyword 
      • provides listings of all the industries where those skills are needed 
      • Search local area for job opportunities in those industries 
      • Find businesses to do informational interviews 

Please watch this quick video demonstration with Lisa Latchford (40 seconds):


Roadblocks to Independence – don’t do this!

One way to guarantee you’ll NEVER get to fade your coaching is to build yourself into the job and “become the cue!”. Cues should be something in the environment that naturally reminds someone how or when to do a task, or tells them it’s complete. If YOU are always telling or showing, instead of training to natural cues – you have become the roadblock to independence. When you stop being the cue, you can break that cycle of dependence and fade supports faster! 

Please watch this video from Robyn Slocom (1 minute):

Improve Job Performance and Coaching with Visual Schedules: How and Why?

Visual schedules can help people understand and organize their worlds (and jobs)! They: 

  •        Display activities or tasks in the order they’ll occur using symbols, pictures, icons, etc.
  •        Clarify expectations about what needs to be done when
  •        Help the individual move from one activity to the next with less frustration
  •        Should be built with the person and their coworkers and individualized
  •        There are a variety of low- and high-tech options available!

Please watch this video with Ashlee Roden (1 minute):  


Top 5 Tips for Job Retention

Did you know job retention starts before job start? Being intentional before, during, and after the job start is key: 

    1. Take your time setting up the job for success 
    2. Learn how everyone communicates best and create a plan 
    3. Set up a coworker/manager to train their new employee 
    4. Build and maintain your relationship with the employer 
    5. Use Universal Design principles to solve problems in ways that help everyone at the workplace to do better. 

Please watch this video from Lisa Latchford (1minute):


3 Steps to Facilitating Career Advancement

Everyone grows and advances in their careers.  Three steps which can help facilitate this for those you support include:

      1. Create more independence on their current job, think about supports to replace yourself, and engage coworkers to become invested and assist
      2. Explore Career Advancement by observing, asking questions, and finding new tasks beneficial to the business and employee. Also consider a new job if appropriate, and
      3. Make a Proposal to the business outlines the details and benefits.

Please watch this video from Jim Corey (1.2 minutes):

The Best Playlist Ever: Setting Work to Music

Did you know a music playlist can be linked to a work task list to help with motivation to work, and lead to fading of coaching supports?

      • Find out what kind of music the supported person likes
      • With their help, choose songs to go with different work tasks
      • Use the songs as natural cues to help move from task to task
      • Fade your support cues as the music does its magic!

Please watch this video from Brandi Monts and Shaun Wood (1 minute):

One great way to find accommodations for people you support!

Good news!  The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) is the place to go! 

      • JAN has a vast amount of information all about accommodations
      • You can search different industries, disabilities, environments, and adaptations/adaptive equipment
      • It can help you identify accommodations that might work for the individuals you support

Watch this short video on JAN with Amy Fiddes (1 minute):

Which is best, direct or indirect verbal prompting?

    • When you tell someone what to do, that’s a direct verbal prompt.
        • “Now close the door” or “Hover the mouse over the green text”
      • When you ask what they should do next, that’s an indirect verbal prompt.
          • “Where should you mop next?” or “Is it time for your break now?”
        • While you might start with direct prompts, indirect prompts are the best way to identify the natural cues built into a job, helping your client to be more independent.

          Please watch this video from Anne-Marie Lake (45 seconds):


5 Things you MUST do to be seen as a Professional

Acting professionally is important for getting great outcomes for your clients and yourself.   

Practice these five tips every day:  

      1. Answer communications within one business day
      2. Listen more than you speak
      3. Dress professionally for each appointment, meeting, and coaching shift
      4. Use professional language in your documentation
      5. Always maintain a positive attitude about what the people you serve can do  

Use these tips to show you are serious about your client’s success – and your own as well!  
Please watch this video from Anne-Marie Lake (40 seconds):

One Powerful Tool: Creating Positive Change through Motivational Interviewing

Don't miss this powerful tool.

Motivational Interviewing

      • Is a collaborative process to strengthen motivation for change
      • Avoids putting you in the expert role of having to identify a problem and offer a solution, and uses the person's own motivation for action
      •  Helps people see differences between where they are now and want to be
      • Is excellent for helping a person identify their own vocational interests and goals
    • Please watch this video from Shaun Wood (1 minute):


      For more information, visit:  

8 Fun Ideas for Celebrating Work and Life Milestones

Everyone wants to be celebrated in their own way.  How do the people you support want to be celebrated? 


      • Say, “Thank you”
      • Small gifts 
      • Pat on the back
      • Go for coffee
      • Certificate
      • Money
      • Public recognition
      • Notes

If there are not already people in the workplace celebrating the person you support, work on making that happen before you fade your support! 

Please watch this video from Chisa O'Quinn (22 seconds):

This Video Reveals 4 of the Best Tips for Using Respectful Language

The language you use is important and the main point is to be respectful.

      • Use words that are appropriate for a professional relationship
      • Give someone time to formulate their response
      • Never use a threatening voice or pressure someone to respond in the moment
      • Use open-ended questions and avoid leading questions

Watch this short and fun video with Stephen Eyman (1 minute):