Top 20 Worst Jobs in America 2024 [With Reasons]

June 7, 2024 0 Comments

Do you love your job?

According to job satisfaction statistics, about 77% of American employees are very satisfied or satisfied with their jobs, while 7% are unsatisfied or very unsatisfied. Only 20% are passionate about their jobs. [1]

But what about people stuck in lower-paid, unsafe jobs with toxic work environments and no job security? And a combination of all of these- The Worst, right?!

What defines the worst job?

While no job is inherently “bad”, the combination of some negative factors can make certain occupations particularly undesirable. 

Unlike popular opinion, money is not the only major factor, other factors are equally important. How? Let’s take a look at statistics and data. According to a study conducted by myperfectresume.com, When people were asked, “What makes you think that a certain job is bad?”

We have reviewed the results in the following table:

Reasons% of people
Low earnings42%
Working with customers39%
The negative atmosphere at work37%
Working with customers39%
Doing a meaningless job37%
Work monotony36%
No chance of growth31%
Disturbing tasks [e.g. requiring contact with death, human waste, etc]29%
Other6%
Source: myperfectresume

It is to be noted here that, a study by the Good Jobs Institute reveals that less than $15 an hour is a constant struggle to pay bills and support families. [3]

The Top 20 Worst Jobs in America in 2024

RankJob TitleMedian Annual SalaryWhy It’s Considered a Bad Job
1Waiter/Waitress$28,880Long hours on one’s feet, dealing with demanding customers, inconsistent tips leading to financial instability 
2Housekeeper$31,920Repetitive tasks, lack of intellectual stimulation, social isolation, physically demanding work 
3Telemarketer$35,170Declining effectiveness of traditional telemarketing methods, regulatory restrictions, shifts towards digital marketing, may not exist in 20 years 
4Fast Food Cook$27,920Low pay, high-pressure environments, physically demanding work 
5Amusement Park Attendant$28,350Monotonous tasks, exposure to the elements, dealing with crowds, stressful work environment 
6Cashier$28,730Repetitive tasks, dealing with difficult customers, lack of job security 
7Dishwasher$29,560Low pay, physically demanding work, lack of advancement opportunities 
8Janitor$31,410Physically demanding work, exposure to hazardous materials, lack of job security 
9Retail Sales Associate$30,950Low pay, inconsistent hours, dealing with difficult customers, lack of job security 
10Childcare Worker$29,570Low pay, high stress, dealing with difficult children and parents, lack of job security 
11Nursing Assistant$30,290Physically demanding work, dealing with difficult patients, lack of job security 
12Bartender$30,340Inconsistent hours, dealing with intoxicated customers, lack of job security 
13Taxi Driver$31,340Low pay, long hours, dealing with difficult passengers, lack of job security 
14Maid$27,700Physically demanding work, lack of job security, low pay 
15Parking Attendant$28,960Low pay, dealing with difficult customers, lack of job security 
16Landscaper$30,440Physically demanding work, exposure to the elements, low pay 
17Delivery Driver$31,720Long hours, dealing with difficult customers, lack of job security 
18Hosts and Hostesses, Restaurant, Lounge, and Coffee Shop

$28,380Low pay, high-stress levels, and limited career advancement opportunities 
19Ushers, Lobby Attendants, and Ticket Takers
$28,700Low pay, high-stress levels, and limited career advancement opportunities
20Lifeguards, Ski Patrol, and Other Recreational Protective Service Workers
$28,370Low pay, high-stress levels, and limited career advancement opportunities 

The worst jobs are often those that are most invisible, like janitors, dishwashers, and fast-food workers. These jobs are often low-wage, lack benefits, and provide little opportunity for advancement. They are also often physically and emotionally demanding, which can lead to burnout and chronic health problems. 

A study by the Beauro of Labor Statistics found that low-wage workers are more likely to develop chronic conditions and experience financial insecurity, which can be passed down to their children.[3] The worst jobs are not just bad for workers, but also for society as a whole, as they perpetuate inequality and undermine social mobility. 

FAQs 

What are the best jobs in America? Compare the best and Worst jobs in America.

Professions in technology, such as software development and data science And healthcare roles, including physician assistants and nurse practitioners are highly regarded due to their significant demand, lucrative pay, and opportunities for remote work.

In contrast, the worst jobs in the world incluse positions such as retail salespersons, food service workers, and manual laborers are included in the list of the worst jobs.

What criteria determine the “worst” jobs in America?

The criteria for determining the “worst” jobs in America often include factors such as low pay, high stress, poor working conditions, lack of job security, and limited opportunities for advancement. 

Jobs that rank poorly in these areas tend to have higher turnover rates, low employee satisfaction, and significant physical or mental health risks. Additionally, jobs with minimal benefits, long hours, and poor work-life balance are often considered among the worst.

Why is a telemarketer job considered a bad occupation?

Telemarketing jobs are often considered among the worst due to the high levels of stress and monotony involved. Telemarketers frequently face rejection and must handle angry or rude responses from potential customers. 

The job typically involves repetitive tasks and strict performance metrics, such as sales quotas, which add to the pressure. Furthermore, telemarketing jobs usually offer low wages, limited benefits, and little opportunity for career growth, contributing to high turnover rates.

Are parking attendants unhappy in their jobs?

Yes, parking attendants’ jobs are quite challenging. They often face monotony and repetitive tasks, such as monitoring parking areas and issuing tickets. Dealing with frustrated or angry customers is common, adding stress to their daily routine. 

Many work outdoors, exposing them to harsh weather conditions, and the pay is typically low, contributing to financial strain.These factors combined often result in low job satisfaction among parking attendants.

How has the rise of gig economy jobs impacted the list of worst jobs?

The rise of the gig economy has significantly impacted the list of worst jobs by introducing positions that often lack job security, benefits, and fair pay. Gig economy jobs, such as ride-sharing drivers and food delivery workers, can involve long hours and unpredictable income, as they depend on demand and customer tips. 

These workers are typically classified as independent contractors, which means they are not entitled to benefits like health insurance, paid leave, or retirement plans, making these jobs less stable and secure.

What can be done to improve worst jobs and make them better for workers?

Improving worst jobs requires a multifaceted approach:

  • Legislation: Implementing and enforcing labor laws that ensure fair wages, reasonable working hours, and adequate benefits can protect workers’ rights.
  • Unionization: Encouraging the formation of unions can help workers collectively bargain for better conditions, pay, and benefits.
  • Training and Education: Providing opportunities for skills development and career advancement can help workers move into better-paying and more secure jobs.
  • Corporate Responsibility: Companies should be encouraged or required to adopt fair labor practices, including offering benefits, ensuring safe working conditions, and promoting work-life balance.
  • Public Awareness: Raising awareness about the challenges faced by workers in these jobs can lead to consumer support for companies that treat their employees well and pressure for regulatory changes.

Conclusion

The worst jobs in America are marked by low pay, high stress, and poor working conditions. Addressing these issues through better laws, union support, and corporate responsibility can improve these jobs. By understanding these challenges, we can work towards creating better work environments for everyone. Let’s aim for a future where all jobs are fair and fulfilling. 

Sources

  1. Jobera.com. 50+ Job Satisfaction Statistics, Facts & Trends in the Spotlight 2024
  2. Myperfectresume. Worst jobs in America
  3. NIH. Food Insecurity Is Associated with Chronic Disease 
  4. en.as. What are the lowest paid jobs in the US in 2024?