Employee in a retail store explaining something to a woman with a paper and pen.

Learning Disabilities


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Let's talk about learning disabilities. This refers to a variety of disorders that affect how a person acquires, retains, or takes in information. People with learning disabilities just learn differently. Learning disabilities affect people from all backgrounds and are not caused by culture, language or a lack of motivation.

Learning disabilities are specific impairments that can result in problems with reading and language-based learning (dyslexia), problems with mathematics (dyscalculia), or problems with writing and fine motor skills (dysgraphia).

This disability may become apparent in your customer service interaction when the person has difficulty reading material or taking in and processing the information you are providing.

Some tips:

  • Take some time — people with some learning disabilities may take a little longer to process, understand and respond.
  • Provide information in a way that works for your customer. For example, keep a pen and paper handy. That way, you can explain, and then review and repeat the information using your notes. If you're discussing confidential information, consider giving the notes to you customer or offering to destroy them.
  • Be prepared to explain any materials you provide for your customers.