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David, Business Owner

Manchester  |  Profoundly deaf  |  One cochlear implant

My job

Since becoming bilateral profoundly deaf in 2016 and subsequently having a cochlear implant fitted, I decided to start my own business and have recently just started another! The two businesses provide different technical services to companies and individuals. I work closely with individuals living with disabilities, such as deafness, providing solutions that increases their independence and quality of life. Being the sole business owner I have to cover all aspects of each business and thankfully this is what I really enjoy, engaging with prospective clients; listening to them and talking through potential technical solutions; and delivering the services and solutions. It’s all about effective communication, listening, understanding and talking so that I can employ different strategies that ensure my deafness does not hinder or hold me back.

My technology

Even though I’m self-employed, Access to Work came to my home for the assessment and have supplied me with a Phonak Roger Select (a radio aid) which helps me in meetings and noisy environments, and Nuance Dragon Speech Recognition Software that dramatically improves my note taking.

I also use the brilliant range of Cochlear’s accessories to the max, the MiniMic2 Plus, Phone Clip and Remote. The MiniMic2 Plus helps in a number of different scenarios: as a table microphone and a directional microphone to make communication with others easier when I’m in meetings and to listen to music when I need to take a break. The Phone Clip takes a lot of stress out of using the phone as I can take calls directly through my implant.

How I got here

I have a technical background in electronics and mechanical engineering and spent 30 years designing, supplying and supporting precision weighing and metal detection systems for the food and process industries. I left industry due to my sudden onset of deafness and decided to do something different that can really make a difference to someone’s life.

My advice

My words of wisdom: Never let deafness hold you back from achieving your goals, so just go ahead and make that difference!