Hate Your Employer and Feel the Need to Talk About It in an Interview?

June 27, 2019

It can be tempting.  You’re in an interview talking about why you want to change jobs and all you want to do is tell the interviewer just how terrible and bad things are at your current firm. You may want to tell them about your lawyer’s challenging personality, how disorganized the firm is or how mean you find some of your co-workers!  Here’s the thing – YOU SHOULDN’T!

From time to time we hear stories of job seekers going into interviews and talking poorly about their current or past employers. You should never, ever speak negatively about your current or past employers. The last thing you want to do in an interview is go on a long-winded tangent of all the terrible things that are happening at your current firm.  The reality is, you have nothing to gain by being negative, and it can detract from everything else you are saying. 

Therefore, with this in mind, here are some tips when you feel the urge to speak poorly about a past employer:

1. Be honest – within reason.

It is perfectly fine to address what your push factors are from your current place of employment or a past job.  However, the key is being able to discuss it in an objective, non-emotional manner.  You do not need to place great emphasis on all of the things you don’t like and be over-dramatic when discussing it.  A matter-of-fact, frank tone will suffice.

2. Avoid giving unnecessary details.

Similarly, it is unnecessary to provide irrelevant details about the specific things you do not like.  For example, you do not need to make assumptions or speculate as to why you think one of your colleagues is mean. Simply letting the interviewer know that you were not placed in a team-oriented environment will suffice.

3. Address what you are looking for in your next role.

As we have discussed before, highlighting what your pull factors are in a new position is the best way to approach the reason behind why you are looking to make a move.  Mentioning a desire for more responsibility, a structured schedule or a better opportunity for advancement are all ways to re-frame a negative in a positive light. 

Thanks for reading! If you would like to discuss further or want to know the best way to frame your response, feel free to give me a call or send me an email.

Happy Job Hunting and Good Luck!

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