… “So, why did you leave your last job?”

In last week, I heard three, very professional, very experienced, apparently intelligent professionals give me these answers:

“Well it was just time to go…”                                                                                                             “My boss and I agreed that it wasn’t working out…”                                                                “I’d rather not discuss it…”

I could go on and on… and I only interviewed 12 candidates this week… over the years, I’ve heard the most unbelievably stupid things that people say when they are asked this question… it’s hard to believe that people don’t think before they come up with a reason as to why they are leaving their present employer or why they left their previous employer… They don’t seem to comprehend the idea that any employer interviewing them is going to imagine somewhere down the line the candidate will be leaving them for the very same reason that the candidate gives for leaving his or her present or past employer..

Please, please, please you gotta  remember that a prospective employer is looking for just as many reasons not to hire you as they are looking for reasons they should hire you… in fact, they are more sensitive to the reasons they shouldn’t hire you than they are to the ones that indicate they should…

Ask  yourself, “does this sound like a really good, solid, reasonable business reason for me to leave my present or past job?”… Whatever you say, it’s gonna be heard as, “this candidate is going to leave me for the same reason…” if the reason is even the slightest bit questionable, the candidate is not likely to be considered for the job…

so, even if you don’t know why you were let go in your last position or it is embarrassing to tell people the reason, you’d better come up with some solid, business reasons for your departure… anything that raises an eyebrow will likely eliminate you… even if you got fired, come up with a good business reason as to why it made reasonable sense…

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