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How to answer "why do you want to leave your job?"

How to answer "why do you want to leave your job?"

Keep your answer positive, and avoid anything too personal. Focus on what you've learnt in your current job, and how you want more. Make the connection between your future ambitions and the role.


A hiring manager will always want to know why you're looking for a new job. 

But it's a question that's often tricky to answer. After all, your reasons for leaving could be complicated!

Here's how to nail the perfect response...

1. Think positive

This question isn't your cue to start slinging mud at your current employer or expressing your frustration – this a job interview, not therapy!

Think about the good things the job gave you (I.e. it prepared you for this great opportunity), but conclude that it could only take you so far in your career journey.

2. Don't get personal

Remember, this is a question about your professional career. Don't start unnecessarily singling out coworkers and line managers or bemoaning your current organisation’s culture.

Even if that's the case (and we know, sometimes it is), it's best to leave it out of your answer! If you really feel you have to mention personal issues you had with other individuals, make sure you sugarcoat it!

3. Always talk about more, not less

Talk about how much more you want to be doing in this role.

Never catch yourself saying your last job involved too much work, the hours were too long or the meetings were too boring.

Even if those are all true, you'll just sound like someone who likes to complain and is expecting a lighter workload.

4. Join up the dots

Make the link between your current role and the role you're now interviewing for. 

Tell them about the skills and experiences your current role has taught you and how they'll help you succeed in this one. And in turn, explain that this organisation is the place where you can develop those skills and gain great new experiences.

This will help the interviewer understand how you've handpicked this amazing role as the next step in your career – a little bit of flattery goes a long way!

Find more interview advice here

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