The Thought That Businesses Dare Not Speak

Esi HardyAttitudes, Business, Communication, Customers, Employees, Inclusion, Purple PoundLeave a Comment

girl with mouth sealed shut

Background

I received an email the other day from a person I met at an exhibition. We had been talking about the importance of web accessibility and tone of voice used to attract disabled customers to a website and fundamentally, to a business. This person was interested in commissioning services of Celebrating Disability to advise on the overall accessibility and engagement of their new website. However, the email suggested that after thinking about it, they had decided that they did not need their website to be accessible from the very beginning.

Celebrating Disability has been in business for a year now.

When I talk about Celebrating Disability, I am becoming more and more aware that it is quite often not the social impact that helps people to understand why they should be disability inclusive but the sheer volume of potential custom that being inclusive and aware can bring.

On the surface, this view of people only doing things if they can see something in it for themselves is rather cynical. However, it’s not quite as simple as that: half the time people do not realise the volume of disabled people.

As we know, disability is it more often than not, invisible. Meaning that the disabled customers (employees and potential employees as well as consumers) that are coming to your business,  will not be easily spotted but will still need adjustments and adaptions in order to participate in, use and access your products and services. The disabled customer who does not have their needs met has also already left to go somewhere else. 91% of customers that are unhappy will never complain but will simply never return. 

Back to the email:

I responded and explained why I felt that this was not the case and that by not making every possible effort to make a website accessible and engaging for disabled customers, they would not only be discriminating but doing their business a dis-service by making it virtually impossible for millions of people to use the business.

If you’d like to discuss the ways your business can attract disabled customers and employees, get in touch.

Esi set up Celebrating Disability in 2017; offering training, consulting and auditing to support businesses attract, engage and retain disabled people. Having the opportunity to support businesses to see the wealth of benefits that disabled people can bring to business, either as customers or employees is a privilege. She is passionate about disability equality and inclusion and loves nothing more than that “Ah ha” moment with a client when they see what disability equality and inclusion can do for them.

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