ADHD at Work: Should I Tell My Boss — Or Not?

I'm about to start my first job, after receiving accommodations for my ADHD up until I graduated from college. Should I tell my boss about my ADHD and ask for accommodations? I don't even know what I would ask for!
The Experts | posted by Susan Yellin
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You do not have to disclose your ADHD (or any other disability) to an employer before you are hired. Until you understand the demands of your job, you may not know how your ADHD will affect your daily activities. You might be able to craft your own personal accommodations that will help you succeed, such as closing your office door when you need to concentrate, using headphones (if permitted) to block out noise, and keeping track of work schedules and assignments using technology.

The way to decide what you need is to analyze the tasks that make up your job and the office environment. If you find that you need accommodations, your employer is required by the Americans with Disabilities Act to offer you reasonable accommodations. First, however, you need to disclose your ADHD, by advising the human resources department (or your boss, in a small workplace) and providing the kind of documentation you needed in college. Then, work with your employer to come up with accommodations that will “level the playing field” for you while taking into consideration the requirements of your job and the cost to your employer in providing accommodations, financially and otherwise.


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