How do I answer the previous job question ?

Friday December 7 2018

Alice Nankya

Alice Nankya  

By Alice Nankya L. Nsibuka

I need a new job but dread the interview question “Why do you want to leave your job?” I do not want to talk about my current employer. What is the best way to answer the “why do you want to leave your job or why you left your job question’’? Resty

Dear Resty,
The interviewer is always curious about why you want to change jobs and if you are worth the risk of hiring. They want to be sure that you’re leaving for the right reasons, a better opportunity, new challenges, and career growth as opposed to reasons like poor performance, integrity issues, difficult working relationships, or because you hate your job or your supervisor. Thus when answering this question, it is important to provide reassurance that you are moving on for the right reasons, not just to get out of a bad work situation.
Consequently you should highlight the positive reasons for considering a new position and avoid talking about any negative ones if you can, like references to management, salary or the number of hours worked. Thus discuss the accomplishments in your current role, how you have conquered past challenges and how the new job will be an exciting challenge for you.
However, it is also necessary to talk about negative reasons in some situations for instance your company may be eliminating your department, maybe the company has been acquired by a competitor and massive layoff are rumored. Even in situations like these, it’s a good idea to emphasise the positive and why you are the perfect fit for this position. Though you may want to address the negative situations briefly or better still avoid getting into the dirty details, it really depends on the situation.

Alice Nankya L. Nsibuka
HR business partner
NMG - Uganda
[email protected]