How Deaf and Hearing Teams Work Together in the Business World
American Sign Language
Business Administration, Management, and Operations
In America deaf people are employed at a much lower rate than hearing people. This is a result of education differences, discrimination, and negative workforce experiences. When deaf people are included in the workplace, employees can improve their ability to work in biodiverse, culturally diverse, and linguistically diverse workplaces. The following research is an ethnography study and interviews of three different teams in the business world to better understand how Deaf and hearing people work together. These teams have a range of hearing statuses: (1) a team of all signing Deaf people, (2) a team with half signing Deaf people and half non-fluent hearing signers, (3) a team with only one signing Deaf member. The teams give insight into how the dynamics of the team change or stay the same based on the number of Deaf team members. The results indicate that teams with ASL as their default language have higher levels of Deaf Culture awareness, and a strong understanding of how to communicate with interpreters had smoother communication among the team members. This supports the fact that deaf people can work effectively in the business world and inclusive communication of deaf members is not exclusive of hearing members.