Why Are You Leaving Your Job?

John Krautzel
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If you're currently employed and seeking another job, an interviewer may ask you, "Why are you leaving your job?" It's a fair question, but it's not the easiest to answer because your answer reflects your personality. An interviewer is trying to understand your motives and work relationships with this question. Discover how to answer this interview question properly and effectively.

Stay Positive

Stay positive with regards to reasons you are leaving your job. For example, you may say you want to expand your horizons by seeking work at a forward-thinking firm. What you do not want to do is bad-mouth your current company. Your interviewer may see you as difficult to manage.

You may feel as if there is no room to grow at your current job. Perhaps the firm is new and the job was wonderful, you just felt as if you were ready to expand and grow your career. You could even go so far as to say you did not want to waste the company's time by staying with the employer while job hunting. Since you are trying to convince a hiring manager you're the perfect fit for the job, state in a positive way how you are no longer the perfect fit for the previous company when leaving your job.

Mention Results

Use hard numbers to back up what you accomplished at your most recent position. Then explain that you're ready for new and exciting challenges. Avoid saying, "The work was boring," or "The pay was too low." Either of those statements means you simply left because you did not like the job any more. Stay focused on hard numbers and results to impress your interviewer about why you are leaving your job.

The perfect scenario for listing results could be just as you finished a big project for Acme Brick. The project is fresh on your supervisor's mind, and you have hard numbers to back up your accomplishments. Then say you were ready for new things and Acme simply was not the firm to take you to the next level. Acme's a great company, but you are ready for greater things.

Don't Dwell

Don't dwell too long on this interview question because the interview is about you, your results, your reliability and your capabilities. The longer you dwell on previous employers, the more curious your interviewer may become and want more information. Leaving your job is a normal thing, and your hiring manager should recognize that, especially in a highly competitive job market.

Leaving your job should not take up too much time in an interview. Instead of focusing on that, convince your interviewer why you're the perfect fit for the position at hand. Talk about what drew you to the job, why you're passionate about it and fitting in with the company culture.

Photo courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net


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  • Fyrel B.
    Fyrel B.

    I was retired from my last position and came home to Missouri. I tried to get into a dispatcher position but could not find one. Now I'm ready.

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