Why do you want to change your job?

+17 votes
asked Feb 6, 2019 in Career & Work by Ivy (830 points)
edited Feb 28, 2019
I currently have a job, but I have some interviews lined up for better jobs that I really want. I’ve been doing some research on what kinds of questions they will ask to prepare myself, and one of the most common questions for people already employed is “Why do you want to change your job?” I don’t want to sound unreliable because I’m trying to leave my job, but I want to be honest with them that I already have a job. What is the best way to answer this question in an interview?

3 Answers

+23 votes
answered Jul 15, 2019 by RCAGrazyna91 (390 points)
edited Aug 5, 2019
When an employer ask “why do you want to change your job?”, he is naturally curious of why did you leave your last job. The reasons tend to be more personal than not, something like “I’m left because I can’t stand my co-worker and the boss bullies me a lot”, if so, you don’t want the interviewer to know that. These kinds of answer just shows immaturity and that you might be “hard to work with”, putting your chances in a very bad spot. You might want to tone down and make it more formal. While some employers might sympathize with you, I would rather you to not take that risk. The last thing you want is the employer seeing you as the “problem” employee.

You can try this simple format for answering the question:

Start with something positive about the job you left, something like “I’ve work with wonderful people and learn a great deal”. You want to assure the employer that you are not just escaping the last job or that you are problematic.

Then follow it up with what makes you interested in your new job. “I’m interested in the opportunity that you are offering and I have always heard great things about your company. So your company is the logical next step for my career.” Focus more on how you will be the best person for this opportunity.

Lastly, a closing statement that will reflect nicely on you. Maybe flatter the company more. “ I’ve always been a huge fan of the company’s services and so I would love to contribute to its success.”

The point is, avoid speaking ill of your old job and show more that the new job is the right one for you. The interview is all about leaving a lasting impression. Keep the answer short, sweet and directed towards the future with the new company, rather than the past employment.
+14 votes
answered Jul 10, 2019 by Tamra (810 points)
edited Jul 28, 2019
If the real reason why you want to change your job is because of a toxic work environment or even worse a toxic boss, it’s smart to tweak the situation and not portray your current job in a negative way. They say honesty is key, but the truth is that most interviewers sympathize with your current boss more than they do you.

Complaining about your psycho boss being unfair or unreasonable just makes them think that you might find a problem with them as a boss as well. What’s to keep you from wanting to get a new job because you don’t like them as a boss too? You don’t have to lie, but just leave out the bad parts when talking about your experience with your current employer.
+4 votes
answered Jul 18, 2019 by Jillian (590 points)
edited Jul 19, 2019 by Kris
When explaining why do you want to change your job during another job’s interview, it’s important to stay positive and provide reasons that highlight your worth as a potential employee. Talk about the fact that you’re looking for more of a challenge, more responsibility, more experience, or change of environment. All of these reasons reflect positively on your work ethic and forward-thinking skills. You can easily turn this potentially negative question around to help your case by explaining why your current job can’t provide you with these opportunities anymore and how you think this new place of employment will provide the change you need.
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