Help for Those Who Did Their Homework: Explaining Terminations Without the ADHD Excuse

Here was the Homework:

What are the reasons for these issues?

What was YOUR role in these issues? What might you have done differently?

Hindsight is 20/20 so use it


Why did I have you review what your role is and what you might do differently? How can you answer tough interview questions about reasons for leaving without looking long and hard at this? YOU CAN’T

So you have your list of causes, what your part was in those causes and how you can improve your situation, you are better off now than you were before and even better off than many others who are still scrambling to even scratch the surface of some of this.

Common reasons for termination/separation for someone with ADHD and WHY: below are some things you may have found out about yourself. These why’s are a bit strong, heavy-handed, direct and most important they are generalizations, so take what looks like it may be you more seriously and those characteristics that are not you ignore and move to the next:

  • late: you are easily distracted, unorganized and not prepared
  • personality conflict: you may be seen by others as overwhelming, over bearing, bossy, scattered, impulsive, nosy, talkative or you may over share your personal issues
  • insubordinate: you are easily distracted, not prepared, talkative, etc… therefore you only hear parts of instructions. You complete tasks that are of interest and work on items that are not assigned to you but appeal to you and leave other work unfinished

When discussing reasons for leaving with a potential employer, even if it is in a phone interview or you are listing on an application DO NOT OVER EXPLAIN, KEEP IT SIMPLE and TO THE POINT.

The biggest key is to remember to be honest about what has occurred and focus on RESULTS and be Solution Oriented

What Does That Mean:

  1. Don’t talk about your personal issues: things about relationships at work or at home don’t belong in an interview
  2. Don’t blame others
  3. Take accountability and show some remorse and how you will improve
  4. Don’t bad mouth previous boss, company, machines … don’t bad mouth anything at all actually, it just means you are negative
  5. People want to hire and work with those who can fix things, find solutions and are problem solvers not problem makers

Here is an example of a good answer:

I was let go due to failure to adhere to the attendance policy, however since that time I have rectified the solution and am now always 5-10 minutes early for meetings, appointments and work. I created stronger habits for myself in time management and use the task manager on my phone and email so that not only am I early or on time, I also complete tasks and duties more efficiently. NO EXCUSES NO BLAMING – Just problem solving!

Bottom line is whether you have ADHD or not, being late, insubordinate, having personality conflicts with co-workers are all unacceptable actions and behaviors in the work place or most any other for that matter. The great thing is these are actions and behaviors which, with practice, can be changed and modified.



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