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Living with invisible disabilities: An Oracle veteran shares insight into his career success

“Oracle knows that the more they accommodate their employees’ needs, the more productive and effective they will become.” Joey B. Customer Success Manager

Joey Bishop is an Oracle Customer Success Manager, former Marine, and someone who describes himself as living with invisible disabilities. “You can’t see everyone’s disabilities,” Joey begins. “I suffer from depression, anxiety, and PTSD. That is more difficult for people to see than a soldier who is missing an arm.”

After leaving the military, Joey honed his IT skills at a tech bootcamp on Camp Pendleton and on-the-job in North Dakota, before securing a position with Oracle in 2018. Now, he lives in sunny Santa Monica with his wife and baby boy and counts himself lucky to work for such a diversity-driven company.

Oracle for all
"The more I learn about Oracle, the more I love it,” Joey enthuses. As a company, we conduct ourselves with an unwavering commitment to diversity, growth, and adaptability. I feel very recognized for my contributions. Oracle knows that the more they accommodate their employees’ needs, the more productive and effective they will become.”

Joey and his emotional support animal Meeko outside the Oracle officeJoey brings his emotional support animal, Meeko, to work with him to help him deal with some of the day-to-day triggers that other people might take for granted. “Throughout my military career, I witnessed difficult and often graphic situations that have affected me deeply.  In the past, I’ve experienced tendencies toward isolation, panic attacks, and shutdown,” he explains.

“Thanks to treatment, this has become a lot easier to live with. My leadership team at Oracle have been a major support. They’ve been completely receptive to my needs and instrumental in teaching how to request approval for any and everything I’ve found helpful.”

Silver linings and transferable skills
There’s no doubt that Joey’s positive attitude is also a big factor in his success. What someone else might view as a setback, he sees as an opportunity. “In a weird way, I believe I owe my anxiety some credit for driving me to over-prepare and give absolutely everything to my dream of breaking into the IT industry,” he says. “Interview preparation and resume-building became my biggest goal in life and I channeled my tendencies toward isolation into positive avenues like education, certification, and exercise.”

In fact, Joey has found many of his skills from the military to be of great use to him in his current role. “Traits like leadership, professionalism, adaptability, and overcoming adversity are some of the obvious call-outs between the Marine Corps and Oracle. Skills like time management and productivity stand to me here every day.”

Being part of something bigger
Oracle’s Military and Veterans Employment Network (MAVEN) helps veterans to achieve successful and fulfilling careers at Oracle. Joey says the Employee Resource Group has been a priceless resource to him in his career.

“MAVEN has given me a direct line to a network of Oracle employees who have similar experiences to mine. It’s a place to go with questions and come away with answers. I’m lucky that I can do a lot of my work remotely, and still know that I can turn to them whenever I need to.”

Where there’s a will there’s a way
When it comes to working with people who have differing abilities, Joey counsels patience and empathy. He believes that by making an effort to understand one another, everyone wins.

“You can’t see everyone’s disabilities, and many people can’t see their own issues that impact their conversations. Sometimes it takes a phone call or a face-to-face meeting to really understand where you might be losing a person’s understanding or point of view—but here I say, there’s always a different approach you can take,” he advises.

“Some of my favorite people to work with now are those that I initially found disagreeable, but as with most difficult situations, you should never give up. Aim for mutual success. It’s always worth it.”

Do you want to realize your potential at a company where your needs matter? Explore Oracle career opportunities today.

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Comments ( 1 )
  • Shroff Faride Burji Monday, December 9, 2019
    Thanks for sharing your story and valuable tips Joey. I am sure many more companies will learn from Oracle on disability inclusion and how it can bring mutual success for all concerned.
    All the best Joey!
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