"Let the watchwords of all our people be the old familiar watchwords of honesty, decency, fair-dealing, and commonsense... "We must treat each man on his worth and merits as a man. We must see that each is given a square deal, because he is entitled to no more and should receive no less. The welfare of each of us is dependent fundamentally upon the welfare of all of us." --Teddy Roosevelt
I often wondered, when I was filling out applications for jobs or sending in my resume, about those employers who informed me that they would be doing a credit check as part of the pre-employment screening project. I knew, generally, what they would find on my credit report. It wasn't pretty. Divorced, single parent of two, part-time college teacher, student loans weighing me down, and eventually, a bankruptcy some years later. My credit report looked like downtown Beirut in '82. Still, I was a bit confused. Yes, my credit history would cause a bank loan officer to flee his desk in horror, but this had absolutely nothing to do with my being able to DO THE JOB.
The course of my life has been, to say the least, interesting. It's a bit calmer now. I teach history at college. I'm not tenured, but that's coming. I have a writing career that is right on the edge of taking off, but these are very recent events.
Last year was another matter. My business, tied directly to the real estate market, went from boom to bust. Finally, after many months, I had an opportunity for a very good position at a Fortune 100. I had all the qualifications they were seeking. Three interviews in I felt extremely confident, especially since they were staffing for multiple positions in this department.
Everything had checked out. My references, both personal and business, couldn't praise and recommend me enough. The hiring team was excited. Then the senior manager of the department mentioned the “one last little thing,” a credit check. I didn't flinch. I don't flinch these days. I've raised two kids on my own to become wonderful, responsible adults. I'm all flinched out.
I told them that my credit report would not look good and here's why. The senior manager, Steve we'll call him, waved it off as no big deal. I left with all but the words “you're hired” coming from his lips.