Why did you resign from your previous job?

‘Why did you resign from your previous job?’ or ‘Why did you leave your last job?’ is a standard question you should expect, that is unless you are a complete fresher. The question is pretty straightforward. The interviewer wants to know what happened and why are you looking for a new job. What was the problem? Did you leave or were you fired? Are you an unsatisfied employee or a problematic one? The interviewer is hoping that in answering the question, you’ll let the interviewer know more about you as a person.

Ideally, the answer should never be negative. Don’t complain about your old job and specifically your old boss or team members. This is an automatic red flag and it might indicate to the interviewer that you are immature or that you may be the problem here. Even if your boss or team was to be blamed, try putting a positive spin on it. Mention something along the lines of that your viewpoints differed with the management without actually getting into details.

A good response would be something along the lines of you are looking for something new; new opportunities to learn or grow. You feel like you had reached the limit in your previous job. You are looking for a change of scenery, or are changing your career. Anything is fine as long as it is positive and doesn’t shine a bad light on anyone. It is even better if you frame it in a manner which shows that this company is so good that you are considering leaving your previous job to join here. Of course, this doesn’t work if you are already out of a job. In which case, just focus on why this is a good company, but don’t bad mouth your previous company.

In short, your answer should be: You are looking for better opportunities. Support this with your previous achievement to show your capabilities. Everything else is just fluff.

Sample Answer:

I loved working for XYZ Company.  I joined the company as a Junior Executive and moved up the ranks to Regional Manager. However, I am now looking to work for a company with an international scope so that I can move further along in my career. My goal is to eventually handle Sales for the Asian Markets. A goal that I think this position will help me achieve.

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