Top 32 Common Thankless Jobs

In the broad field of employment, there are various jobs that usually remain unnoticed and unappreciated. These roles are called thankless jobs. Thankless jobs are crucial to the smooth functioning of our society, but they rarely receive the recognition they deserve. From farm workers to garbage collectors, these individuals work tirelessly without acknowledgment for their contributions. They are the unsung heroes in our society who keep things running smoothly behind the scenes. In this article, we will look at the most common thankless jobs in our community, exploring their challenges and the importance of recognizing their contribution to the world around us. 

Top 32 Thankless Jobs:

Farm workers

A farmer probably raised the food you are putting in your mouth. You eat something every day that has been grown by a farmer. While we cannot be really blamed for not displaying our gratitude for all farmers’ efforts to keep us fed, that does not change the fact they have a thankless job. Farm personnel works in challenging conditions and environments to grow and harvest the food you eat. They work tirelessly and for long hours to ensure we have a sufficient food supply, but they often get low wages. 


Compared to farmers, you know your teachers better. At least you have met and interacted with several in your life. But how many have you contacted or thanked after school completion or graduation? No matter how small a role a teacher played, the individual still contributed to becoming the person you are today. Some people argue teachers do not get paid enough for the amount of work they do. They play a significant role in shaping the future generation but still get little appreciation. 

Social workers

Social workers help us get back on our feet. They help diagnose and treat emotional, behavioral, and mental problems. Social workers help vulnerable populations and often deal with challenging and sensitive conditions. But you will find some being abused physically and psychologically. Despite working for long hours, including evenings and weekends, they get little pay and may not always get the recognition they deserve.

IRS agents

No one likes to pay taxes. IRS agents review tax returns, collect overdue tax payments, identify taxes owed, and conduct audits. They get what eligible citizens owe their government. Their salary is insufficient to compensate for their work, and the public constantly ridicules them for doing their job. 

Garbage collectors

Just think about how your neighborhood would be without garbage collectors. It would be virtually unlivable. Think about how the streets would fill up with filth and stink without these workers. The work of garbage collectors often requires physical involvement, but they are usually underappreciated. 

thankless jobs

Window cleaners

The clean windows you see on skyscrapers are not the work of weather alone. Humans also keep them clean. These workers risk their lives by hanging on a thread when cleaning the windows. Window cleaners hardly get a thank you or a smile from the people sitting comfortably on the other side doing their office job or talking on a phone. 


Paralegals are personnel who help lawyers during trials. They assist with drafting, opinion writing, and conducting legal research. They perform various everyday office duties, including keeping track of case files. Unfortunately, they hardly receive the same gratitude as lawyers. Paralegals get less than half the salary that lawyers get. 

Interns and attaches

Interns and attaches hardly get noticed at their workplaces. They even end up doing duties outside of their career. Other workers even exploit them by sending them to get office tea or snacks outside the workplace. Some workers use courteous words like please when giving them unnecessary tasks to make them feel better about themselves. In most cases, interns and attaches do not work for money. They are just there to get a good reference or some honorable mention on their resume. 

Security guards

Security guards sleep a little less to ensure you are safe. Most people sleep peacefully, knowing that security guards got their safety covered. This personnel ensures our safety and security and that of our properties. Security guards work in risky environments like high-crime regions, yet they go unrecognized. They also preserve harsh weather conditions to ensure our safety. Be kind and thankful any time you meet a security guard. 


Despite surgeons and doctors playing a significant role in determining the cause and treatment for health issues, nurses play an essential role in a patient’s overall wellness. Nurses administer medications, maintain patients’ records, monitor patients’ vital signs, and provide emotional support to patients. Most people view them as doctors’ errands, boys or girls. Even after recovery, most of us thank doctors and surgeons and forget nurses exist. 

9-1-1 dispatchers

9-1-1 dispatchers include police, fire, and ambulance attendants. They respond to emergencies regardless of how risky they might be. Without 9-1-1 dispatchers, you have a slim chance of an ambulance, police car, or fire truck reaching your emergency site. These unsung heroes provide critical assistance and guidance during life-threatening situations. Despite their invaluable contribution to public safety, 9-1-1 dispatchers rarely get appreciated. 

Prison officers

Prison officers are another group of unappreciated workers. They have to keep up with different criminals with various offenses. Dealing with prisoners can be one of the most hectic tasks. Some prisoners do not accept their crimes, so they tend to relay their anger to the prison officers. The prisoners feel that the officers deny them freedom. Because of the much pressure prison officers get from the prisoners, some succumb to mental disorders like depression and anxiety. 


Accountants are sometimes called bean counters. These workers keep records of all finances. People spend money, but accountants must track a company’s resources and be realistic about whether it is financially solvent. Accounting is a crucial sector in every company and mostly gets hiccups which an accountant must work on to ensure things run smoothly. 

Cleaning staff

Cleaning staff ensures the environment we live or work in is tidy. These individuals wipe, sweep and dust all corners of our homes, offices, and hospitals. The job became even more challenging during the Covid-19 pandemic as they were exposed to environments infected with the deadly virus. During the pandemic, some facilities had to close down, making them jobless. Cleaning staff tidy everything from making beds to wiping bodily fluids off surfaces, risking their health for us to live in hygienic environments. Anytime you interact with the cleaning staff, be kind. They deserve it. 

Childcare workers

Handling children can be challenging, especially when dealing with young kids or a large number. It is even more difficult when you taking care of a child whose parents do not understand their kid. When caring for children, you are often responsible for their safety and well-being. Sometimes, parents blame childcare workers when their kids behave or act in a way they do not like or expect. If you value your kids, you should respect the person caring for them. 


Caregivers take care of the most vulnerable people in the society. They give physical and emotional support to the elderly, disabled, and ill. Sometimes they risk their lives by taking care of patients with infectious diseases. The job can sometimes be overwhelming, affecting their emotional well-being. Appreciate a caregiver next you meet or recognize one. 

School custodians

The admins are yet to learn what school custodians do. Sometimes teachers request favors from school custodians, like cleaning and tidying up their offices, and in return, give them a Starbucks gift card or their favorite drink. What teachers give in return for the favor is too little compared to the work the custodians do to the extent of working extra hours. About once a year, students are encouraged to thank school custodians, but more is needed compared to the duties they perform.

Science and engineering researchers

Science and engineering researchers work on real problems affecting the world that you do not even know about. No one gets to thank them. Scientists and engineering researchers work on complex projects trying to determine the causes of certain events in the world and develop the best solutions to improve the world. They solve significant problems in the world and yet get no appreciation.


When we say journalists, we are not focusing on the talking heads on cable TV. We mean the personnel who go out there and hold influential people accountable and tell stories about those who are overlooked. Sometimes these people are criticized for exposing the absolute truth people face in society. They also risk their lives to get information, especially during non-peaceful demonstrations, fire accidents, or crime scenes. 

These journalists work for long hours and are compensated with low wages. No one really thanks them or understands how they work selflessly to help us know what is happening in our society. 

Water treatment plant operators

Water is an essential element in our everyday lives. Imagine how the world would be without people to provide clean water. We would be having disease outbreaks one after the other. Personnel who work at water treatment plants need to be appreciated enough. They work day and night to ensure the water we use is safe and clean for consumption. We should have a parade every year to appreciate these workers. 

Restaurant cooks

In most cases, you will always praise a hotel or a restaurant for its excellent food, but you do not get to appreciate or know the person behind the delicious meal. Cooks are among the most unappreciated workers in a restaurant. They work their asses off to ensure your order is made correctly and on time. The personnel may have to work on more than three orders simultaneously. They work tirelessly to ensure customers are satisfied but rarely get appreciation from the management or other servers. 

Call center operators

Call center operators handle client inquiries and complaints over the phone. They work with all customers, including stubborn, impatient, and rude individuals. Call center operators are responsible for resolving all issues, yet they rarely receive appreciation for their efforts. Whether a customer is impatient or stubborn, call center operators try their best to offer solutions.

Public transit workers

Public transit workers include bus drivers, subway operators, and other personnel. They offer essential transport services. Public transit workers often work long hours, deal with stubborn and difficult passengers, and navigate challenging traffic and weather conditions, while ensuring all passengers reach their destinations safely. Thank a transit worker and give the individual an easy time any time you use public transport. 

Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs)

Emergency Medical Technicians focus on saving lives. They offer critical medical care and transportation to individuals in emergencies. EMTs usually work in high-pressure conditions and selflessly do everything to help save a life. This personnel even helps in risky situations like fire accidents to ensure they save lives. Despite their hard work, they are often overlooked. 

Delivery drivers

Delivery drivers deliver packages and goods to our doorsteps. They work on tight deadlines and face harsh weather and traffic conditions to ensure we get our packages on time. Sometimes they face harassment from customers, especially if goods are not delivered on time or there is even a slight defect in the package. Always appreciate a delivery driver when you get your package. They deserve it. 

School bus drivers

School bus drivers transport students from their homes to school and vice versa. They often deal with challenging behaviors of the students and traffic conditions. School drivers make sure they pick up and drop off each student at the right location and on time. They ensure each student’s well-being, yet their work goes unrecognized. The drivers are responsible for reporting an awkward event that may happen during transportation to the school admin or the parents. 

Deep sea fishermen

If you have never thought about deep sea fishermen, watch The Deadliest Catch on Discovery and recognize how risky the job can be. Deep sea fishing is the most dangerous job in America. It is sixty times deadlier than the overall workforce. Deep sea fishermen risk being dragged overboard when snagged by hooks or swept out in the sea during bad weather. Think about fishermen anytime you pop a fish in the oven. 

Ambulance drivers

The ambulance driver is a high-pressure job. These individuals often work in life-or-death situations. Most ambulance drivers are trained as emergency medical technicians. The role is physically and emotionally demanding and often needs an irregular work schedule. Ambulance drivers require incredible concentration and driving skills because they are needed to get patients to a medical care facility as fast as possible to help save lives. Appreciate an ambulance driver any time you meet one. 

Maids and housekeepers

Most maid and housekeeper jobs are neither glamorous nor lucrative. Because there are a lot of people who can do or are willing to do these jobs, they will always be underpaid. Maids and housekeepers spend their days tirelessly cleaning, organizing, and maintaining our homes, only to receive minimal or no appreciation. 

Maids and housekeepers face a lot of challenges in their line of work. They deal physically with demanding tasks like scrubbing floors and toilets and also navigate through cluttered rooms and tight spaces. Also, they must adapt to each client’s varying preferences and expectations. These individuals ensure our living areas are comfortable and enjoyable, yet they rarely get a thank you for their dedication.

Food service worker

The demand for inexpensive and convenient food has increased with the current economy. Sometimes, food service jobs are the easiest to procure during hard times. Food service workers suffer each day to feed us, and they deserve better income to get enough to provide for their own families. These individuals endure long hours on their feet, deal with demanding customers and manage a wide range of responsibilities in return for a minimum wage.

Street cleaners

Street cleaners play a significant role in maintaining hygiene in our urban environments. They perform various tasks, including sweeping sidewalks and emptying trash cans to ensure our cities remain presentable for residents and visitors. Street workers face many challenges, such as heavy traffic, unpredictable weather conditions, and hazardous materials. They also work long hours under harsh climatic conditions, from scorching sun to cold. Despite their efforts, they often go unnoticed. We rush past them without a glance or a thank you. 

Construction workers 

Construction workers toil day in and day out to build our cities and infrastructure. They usually work for long hours and face extreme weather conditions, hazardous materials, heavy machinery, and physically demanding tasks daily. Construction workers perform many duties, from towering skyscrapers to laying down roads and bridges to help shape the world around us. These workers remain committed to their job, but their efforts are usually overlooked or taken for granted. 

In conclusion, thankless jobs play a significant role in our society and deserve recognition and appreciation. From caregivers to construction workers, they work tirelessly behind the scenes to keep our lives running smoothly. Without these unsung heroes, our schools, offices, and streets would be dirty and chaotic. It is essential as a society we acknowledge and appreciate thankless jobs. 

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