Why Would You Change Jobs Now?

I read an article on the Ladders today about interviewers asking why a job seekers would make a job change during a recession.  As the article points out, this is a tough interview question – one of the toughest you might encounter.  It's also a question you can expect to hear a lot.

I've been getting a lot of resumes lately from people who have been in their current position for only a year or two.  They show significant accomplishments on their resume in their current job.  Despite the short tenure, they're actively looking for a change.  It's impossible to avoid wondering why.

There are a number of reasons a job seeker might want a change soon after taking a job:

  • The job seeker is failing and worried about being fired

  • The company is in trouble and they expect to be laid off

  • The job seeker misjudged the opportunity and is looking for something that better suits their goals

  • The job seeker has personal issues that require a move

  • The job seeker has a professional goals that are being satisfied in their current position

There are numerous other reason why a job seeker would want to make a change.  The article on the Ladders discusses how to answer questions about why you want to make a change in an interview.  This is important, but you need to address it before the interview.

What do you think the hiring manager will assume when they read a resume?  If you don't explain why you are looking for a job, the hiring manager will usually assume the worst.  This makes it important to answer why you are looking, either in your cover letter or resume.  Provide a short statement as to why you are on the market despite the short tenure in your position.  If you are out of work, addressing this is even more important.

You can check out the article on the Ladders at Tough Interview Questions: Why Are You Making a Move in a Recession?