Dyslexia Awareness Week last week aimed to highlight the variety of difficulties faced by those who battle with this condition on a day to day basis. We asked Jon Dytor, digital manager for Close Brothers, who lives in Vicars Cross, to describe how he has refused to allow dyslexia to hold him back:
My name is Jon, and I am dyslexic. And I have been asked to write 400 words on how I cope with dyslexia - the irony is not lost on me!
To be honest though, I’ve never thought of myself as suffering from dyslexia. Though I would be lying if I said it hadn’t affected my life decisions.
You see my biggest problem has always been writing – my handwriting has always been bad/illegible, I have a tendency to miss out words, plus my grammar is not good – but this was never a massive deal for me.
I did fine at school (I got 11 GCSEs and even took some a year early), I got four A levels at college, and then went to university and earned a bachelor’s degree and then a master’s degree.
However, the subjects I’ve excelled in have always been the more creative: art, media, design, etc - basically anything that involved as little writing as possible!
So when I left university it was no surprise that I looked for work that would involve as little writing as possible too. However, that didn’t quite work out.
During my time at university I really got into digital (like most people who studied in the ‘00s I guess), so when I left my studies I decided I wanted to work in the web industry.
The first job I could find was working for a website selling recruitment advertising, and even though this wasn’t the most exciting job in the digital world, it did cement my love for online.
So after a couple of years I joined a top London web agency working with top UK charities on their digital strategies.
But there was a slight problem: this role involved me proposing big ideas and solutions, and these ideas and solutions needed to be explained in a lot of detail. Usually in writing.
And I won’t lie; the first few strategies I worked on needed re-writing.
But I stuck at it, and I eventually found a way of writing that works for me: I start very top-level and list a few key bullet points.
Then I expand each one into more detail using lots of images and diagrams when I find words can’t quite explain what I mean.
Oh, and I always give myself 24 hours between finishing something and proofreading it. Otherwise, there will be loads of spelling mistakes.
And I must be doing something right as, just a few months ago, I was hired as the new digital manager for a very large UK bank, charged with managing their websites and creating a digital strategy for the business.
Which of course, I will need to write.
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