Why Did You Leave Your Last Position?

This is a question that you can almost count on being asked at your next interview. What the interviewer wants to know is, “Why are you available?”

The answer you give could set the tone for the rest of the interview. For instance, if you were to indicate that you were bored or burned out at your last job, the interviewer would quickly become concerned about your performance at this company. The question can be especially tricky if you’ve had less than favorable conditions regarding your departure from a company. Regardless of the circumstances that have caused you to move, or are causing you to think about moving, you should be prepared to answer this question.

Below are examples of possible answers to this critical question. After reading them, try to determine which is the strongest answer.

  • The company had a re-organization, and my department was eliminated. The work had begun to dwindle so it was not a complete surprise. I liked my job and the people I was working with so I had been hoping that it wouldn’t affect us but unfortunately we were all let go. I would like to find a job similar to the one I lost.
  •  I am looking for a new challenge. I have been with my current company for two years now and don’t find the work as interesting as I once did. I am looking for a company where I can take on new challenges and grow. My current job is dead-ended for me.
  • Since there are no advancement opportunities within the company, I have decided it would be a good time for me to look outside. I have set some career goals for myself that I could not achieve at that company. What I am looking for is a job with a bigger company where I can contribute, but also move on a career path that has more responsibility.

Have you selected the strongest answer? See if you agree with the advice.

(Excerpts taken from “Boost Your Interview IQ” – Carole Martin – McGraw-Hill – Second Edition 2012)

For more information: www.interviewcoach.com

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