Bad attitude

One of the biggest reasons which keep jobs from ex-offenders is the bad job attitude. Most employers will simply label this as an 'attitude' and blanket most ex-offenders wanting jobs with this label. The problem is that not all ex-offenders wanting jobs have the bad job attitude, and must prove otherwise during the first meeting, first interview, or first day on the job.

Reflections of a Bad Job Attitude

There are many ways to show a bad attitude at the job. Employers of ex-offenders are always looking out for any of the following signs for them to push you out the door.

  • Wearing hairstyles, jewelry and clothing which is inappropriate for the job or environment.
  • Having excuses for not getting the job done or not being on time.
  • Unwilling to put in extra hours when needed.
  • Treating other employees or the employer with disrespect.
  • Use of bad or foul language
  • Use of derogatory or hate speech
  • Not keeping busy
  • Badmouthing the employer, other employees, clients, or the company
  • Being mean and unaccommodating
  • Unwillingness to learn new tasks or methods
  • Frequently complaining

There are many ways around the bad job attitudes that employers see on jobs and from ex-offenders. Here are a few ideas.

  • Inquire about the dress code and be reasonably willing to follow the general guidelines of the job
  • Before thinking of the excuse, think of five reasons to not have an excuse
  • Overtime may not happen on a constant basis. If it does you have the ability to negotiate for a raise in pay.
  • Consider what language you would use around your grandmother, minister or father; keep that language in public use
  • Consider how you would treat your parents, or someone you respected; make an attempt to treat others with this attitude
  • Keep yourself moving and motivated at work so as not to appear lazy
  • Learn new ways to do things so you are more capable to handle new challenges as they arrive
  • If you find yourself constantly complaining, look inward then look for other work
  • Treat co-workers with decency and respect; if they can not return the favor, consider yourself at a level beyond this and stay clear of the situation.

While it is true that bad attitudes on the job are not always contributed by ex-offenders, jobs which are held by ex-offenders are more often watched with a wary eye. Your main goal as an ex-offender with a new job is to show the employer your skill and ability while not becoming part of the stereotype.