An injury shouldn’t lead to long-term unemployment, but for customer and ex-car salesman John Youd, the battle to return to the workforce was a near three-year struggle.
For the 48-year-old Tasmanian, a back injury coupled with the daily effort to manage his anxiety over whether his sales skills were up-to-date, meant he’d written himself off.
“I’d pretty much given up on work, I’d given up on life,” Mr Youd said.
Mr Youd worried that while he waited to recover, his attractiveness to a future employer would be affected.
Emma Stewart, MAX disability employment expert, helped break down Mr Youd’s employment barriers. In reaching out to local employer Lifestyle Caravans, she felt that despite having a physical condition like back pain, it was important to see what Mr Youd could do at work, rather than what he could not.
“I saw John’s talents and worked with him to build his confidence back up,” she said.
“I saw a great position for him with Lifestyle Caravans and thought he’d be perfect for it.”
For Mr Youd, selling the great outdoors lifestyle to Tasmanians has transformed his life.
“It’s given me a reason to get up in the morning,” he said proudly.