The Wonderful World of Work: A workbook for Asperteens ~ Jeanette Purkis

When receiving the book I was expecting something like a large hard covered book that gave information about finding employment for the person on the autism spectrum. The book turned out to be far better than I expected it to be. The book itself is around 120 pages worth of excellent information and did not take very long to read at all. It’s not just a book that talks about finding employment in an upbeat way, but also a workbook where you are given a series of questions and scenarios to work out. I have not filled any out, but I do wonder about the working conditions in the 1850s compared to now. I can answer that, but I will leave all that for someone else. I am providing my thought about the book below, but I have to say it is an astonishing book that is well written and I am not sucking up or anything to any authors unless they want to send me more books, but I could provide them with a list of my wants. The book only takes several hours to devour that is unless you have plenty of distractions. I did have several friends recommend the book to me to read. I might be currently employed, but I found it enjoyable regardless.

I really did love the graphics throughout the book as they were a credit. The shelf stacking one on page 25 is actually amusing from someone who works in retail. Since I am a shelf stacker I am highly amused by the image as it does violate the OH&S rules by placing the large stock on the very top shelf. The pictures do the whole book justice and are helpful. The book does not just give people information about all aspects of employment including the different industries, but gives the reader real stories as examples of people who are within the varied areas of employment including of the author herself. In no way is the book negative about the different aspects of the wonderful world of work and hopefully provides the budding worker who wants a job with the tools to start their journey. There are basics the book does pick up upon like the differences of employment which does include part time, casual and full time work. The only area of work that I did find to be missing was seasonal work, which would include jobs like picking fruit. That is unless it was meant to be within another area that I had not seen, but the main areas were covered so I cannot complain at all. At least the areas of study does make up for the little bit being missing and study after leaving school is one area to think about that can be seen as going further.

Looking at my own journey to employment and that with the book there are similarities as people do work in different areas. While looking at the book there were techniques that I myself did use especially when with an employment agency. There was the use of cold calling, using other resources outside of employment agencies like the newspaper and the internet. The book does jump into the life of the employee and the different aspects once the person has become employed. The information on how to deal with other workers up to the boss themselves is valuable information that not everyone would be able to understand. Not everyone would realise the inner workings of the place of employment especially with things that could be considered especially if you should declare your diagnosis to the employer or not. That would be the biggest conundrum within any workplace today. The other one would be trying to find the right employment for yourself.

This book is something that should be thrown out amongst the autism community to provide the families and the people on the spectrum something positive to look at. There should be many books out like this one, but seems to be the only one directed towards anyone on the autism spectrum. Sure there is plenty of literature online including Youtube movies that explain the various aspects of the interview process. I once tried to help and explain to a friend overseas about what they needed when searching for employment and I would have to say if they were armed with this book then they would have understood. A book like this one should be placed within all professional organisations from employment agents to those who call themselves coaches for the young on the spectrum. In all honesty this is something they should be placing as top priority for the teens and young adults. Parents should read the book too so they can rest easy without being in a panic about what could happen in the future, which could be very positive. I don’t think there is much emphasis being given to books like these that are a huge credit to the community in general.

In closing I should say buy the book and have it on your shelf if you have read it. I don’t think the skills would just be directed at those on the autism spectrum as it would be helpful towards those who are not too. It might give an understanding for all on how to treat their employees well. Employers, parents, employment agencies, Charity groups, Social welfare people and those who work within the autism community including the professional coaches should all have copies of this book especially so they can understand the people on the autism spectrum in a positive light and then provide guidance in the persons decision for their future. It is their journey that they need to go on.

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