Home> Blog>  “Why Are You Leaving Your Current Job?” - Interview Question

“Why Are You Leaving Your Current Job?” - Interview Question

Struggling to find good reasons for leaving a job? We walk you through it with tips, sample answers, etc. to help you have a better job interview.
By Synkdup Editorial Team  |  29 April 2024
why are you leaving your current job

Job interviews can throw out just about any kind of question at you. These could be basic questions to get to know you better, or even more technical questions to test your competency for the role. Many people pay attention to your attire, so knowing what to wear to an interview helps. Sometimes they even ask you questions regarding your previous jobs or the company you are about to leave.

One common question, which many candidates stumble upon, will be put under the microscope here. “Why Are You Leaving Your Current Job?”. A short but impactful question that is often used by recruiters. If you answer this well, it may be one of the signs you will get the job. Figure out how to deal with it in this article.

Why Do Employers Want To Know Your Reasons For Leaving A Job?

If asked, the recruiter will likely give it importance. Getting to know this is crucial for any recruiter, regardless of which industry they work in. Understanding why recruiters ask this question will help us better respond to them. Let’s dive into it.

To Know If You Got Fired

If a candidate gets fired from their previous job, employers will surely note it. They will probably also ask for further details. Unfortunately, getting fired will act as a negative for recruiters, but it is not the end of the road. Recruiters may empathize with an individual if they feel the candidate has been terminated unjustly.

To Test Your Loyalty

If a candidate has quit their previous job, the employer will likely want to know the reasons behind it. This is likely to determine if the scenario can apply to their own company. If so, there may be a chance you'll do the same to them in the future.

This is understandable, as companies usually want a candidate to work with them long-term if they do get hired. Hence, if they feel one’s commitment to the big picture is questionable, they may be unwilling to hire. It is also important to leave the job with proper notice.

Relevant Article: How to Give Two Weeks Notice the Right Way

On the flip side, if they feel your reasons for leaving a job may not apply to their company in the future, they may be willing to go ahead with the recruitment process. Loyalty is an important quality employers look for in the job market.

Assess Your Priorities

Knowing your reasons for leaving the previous job or wanting to leave the current one helps the interviewers figure out what your priorities are. Whether you are motivated by salary, learning opportunities, higher positions, scope for advancement, etc. This will help them manage you in the future if they end up hiring you.

They also want to check if your aspirations match theirs. This will make you a good fit for the company. A candidate whose ambitions do not match those of the organization may not be deemed a good fit.

Should You Explain Why You Quit Your Job?

The simple answer is yes. This is a vital question for any employer. Trying to dodge it is never a good idea. It gives the impression that you are trying to hide something or have done something inappropriate. Just look at it from the recruiter’s perspective.

If you are looking to hire someone for the company, you will likely prefer someone who can stay long-term. Companies do not want someone who will leave quickly because then they have to go through the hassle of finding a replacement and waiting for them to get settled in the role.

The answer to this question helps you in trying to figure that out. If a candidate avoids this question, you can’t determine their loyalty. This will act as a red flag and make you hesitant to hire them. Hence, answering this question is important. The key thing is wording it well.

Good Reasons For Leaving A Job (With Sample Answers)

Understanding a candidate's reasons for leaving a job can help you make better decisions later in your career. It also helps you understand different perspectives and other employees’ decision-making methods. Here are some good reasons for leaving a job, often stated during interviews.

1. Offered A Better Deal

Many employees, even if they are happy with their jobs, leave a company if they feel they are receiving a very good offer from another company. Better can be defined differently for every individual. For some, it is a higher salary; for others, it is greater scope for advancement or more learning opportunities, and so on.

Sample Answer:

"At my previous job, I was being paid enough to cover my regular expenses. However, I could not save much and felt it did not match my level of experience and qualifications. It was enough to satisfy my immediate needs, but I did not feel I could go ahead with it long-term. The increment system also did not offer adequate scope for growth in my eyes. Hence, I felt I needed to take a step forward in my career and pursuit towards financial freedom.”

2. Unjustly Looked Over For A Promotion

It is a highly demoralizing moment for any employee. They grind out for years, putting in the hard hours, reaching the KPIs, tolerating their bosses, etc., only to see a less qualified and deserving candidate get the post. Sometimes the company may hire externally for the role. Either way, it is a bitter pill to swallow.

It may force many individuals to feel detached from the work environment. You may fall out with the upper hierarchy and even begin to hate your job. Some individuals even feel betrayed. It is no surprise that many individuals opt to leave companies under such circumstances.

Sample Answer

“I had stayed at my previous company for about three years and was well-seasoned in my role. My immediate senior was going to leave, and many felt I was the one most likely to replace him. However, for some reason, instead of promoting me internally by giving me that role, the upper management decided to recruit externally and hire someone else. I was disappointed and felt it was time to move forward.”

3. Not Getting Along With The Boss

It is not at all rare for a boss and an employee to not get along. This happens all the time in companies. However, this is not to trivialize the issue but rather to make readers understand how prevalent it is. Being under a boss who does not like you is not easy.

Some bosses even misuse their authority to harm employees. It may greatly hinder the employee’s chance of growing in the organization and their scope for advancement. In such cases, leaving the company may be a smart move for one’s career and even mental health.


“I was unfortunately terminated from my job as a customer service representative. I tried my best and worked hard, but I was not able to fit in well with the organization and its culture. I did my best to follow office discipline and other rules. I also reflected greatly on the experience and have learned a tremendous amount from it. Since then, I have paid more attention to finding jobs where I fit in better with the office culture and their style of work."

4. The Company Didn’t Match Your Ambitions

It often happens that highly motivated and ambitious individuals find themselves in a company that, in their eyes, is dreaming small. In some cases, an employee may feel the company suits them, but after enhancing their skill set, they feel they have outgrown the firm and need to step up in their careers.

In such a case, there is nothing wrong with wanting to make the step up into a bigger organization that you feel suits your ambitions. It also shows that you like to push past your comfort zone and take on new challenges. This is always seen as a positive.

Sample Answer

“When I joined my previous company, I felt it would be a step up in my career. However, after a few months, I felt the company was not challenging me, and I was not learning as much as I expected. Hence, I decided it was best for us to part ways so I could find another firm that aligned better with my ambitions.”

5. The Job Didn't Live Up To Expectations

It often happens, not just in the job market but also in life, that things do not live up to our expectations. Sometimes promises end up being too good to be true, while on other occasions, luck may not be on our side.

So you’ve joined a company expecting to grow, learn new things, explore new challenges, etc., but after a while, you don’t find any of what you expected and end up feeling disconnected at work. Here, finding a new company may be the right move to re-ignite your motivation and elevate your career.

Sample Answers

“In my previous company, I had been promoted to a higher role, and it felt like a dream come true. However, after a while, I grew bored and felt it was not exactly as amazing as I thought, and I felt I needed a change to help me move past my comfort zone. This would help me re-ignite my career.”

6. Laid Off

This is a common reason for many candidates leaving their previous jobs. One positive about this is that at least the reason was out of your control. Common factors influencing layoffs are companies undergoing acquisitions and restructuring. Another reason could be that the company is attempting to reduce costs and needs to let go of excess weight.

Being laid off happens to a lot of employees throughout their careers. Typically, it is less about the employee being incompetent and more based on circumstances that are beyond their control. If an employee shows he is qualified for the role they apply for, then this may not be held against them.

Sample Answer

“Our company was negatively impacted due to the economic recession that occurred recently. The management was forced to downsize, leading to numerous employees in the firm losing their jobs. I have always done my best to be a good employee and a model professional. My bosses also liked me, but sometimes one has to accept that certain events are beyond their control. I’ve grown enormously from the setback and am looking forward to resuming my career and taking on new challenges.”

7. Pursuing Further Education

A lot of candidates leave their jobs to add more educational qualifications to their resumes. Acquiring more knowledge can certainly help you professionally. Normally, candidates seek additional qualifications for the kinds of roles they aspire to take up in the future.

For example, an individual may pursue a certification in project management because they want to take on more responsibility in future roles. This can be viewed positively by recruiters, as it indicates the candidate is motivated by growth. Such candidates can be potential assets going forward.

Sample Answer

“I was doing well in my previous job and liked it. However, I also felt I needed to acquire more qualifications so I could make a step up in my career. Hence, I made the difficult decision to leave my job in pursuit of further education. After I completed my course, I came back to the workforce with a fresh perspective and a more mature mindset. It helped me become a skilled professional and enhanced the quality of my work.”

8. Changes In Work Arrangements

Sometimes employees face unexpected changes in circumstances that make them seek a change in their current work arrangements. On other occasions, the desire for change in work arrangements may be internally driven and not something one must pursue. The aftermath of COVID-19 on the job market has also led to the rise of alternate modes of employment.

For example, a woman who has recently had a child may prefer working from home so she can better take care of her newborn. This may suit her, as she can attend to her child when needed and work at her convenience.

Sample Answer

“Previously, I had a work-from-office arrangement, which I thrived in, but later I realized that in my profession, remote work options had emerged after the COVID-19 pandemic. It takes me about an hour to commute to work daily and then an hour to travel back. That’s about two hours I can save daily, which I would like to use to enhance my skills and also to pursue a side hustle. Hence, owing to my need for a change in work arrangements, I decided to leave my job and take up this new challenge of working remotely.”

9. Growth Opportunities

There are employees out there who are motivated more by evolving and maturing as professionals than by salary. If they see a job opportunity that offers more potential to acquire new skills and challenges their comfort zone, they opt for it. This helps them grow and take on bigger roles in the future.

Sample Answer

“My previous job in my former company was good, and I was able to handle my role well. However, towards the end of my time there, I felt my career had plateaued. I needed to find a new challenge to re-invigorate my passion. I felt my scope for advancement in my previous firm declined due to the aforementioned reasons. Hence, I needed to try and push past my comfort zone by exploring new opportunities to help elevate my career and become a better professional.”

How to deal with “Reasons For Leaving A Job” Interview Question

A candidate with an interview coming up should be prepared for this question. Giving a bad answer to this question can likely go against you. It can hinder your chances of getting hired. However, do not get all tense, as you can easily overcome this obstacle with the following tips.

1. Don’t Panic If You Were Fired

A lot of candidates get worried if they have been fired from their previous jobs. They try to dodge the question. They think being terminated is a death sentence to their career. This is certainly not the truth. Also, if you attempt to hide and they find out later, it hinders your chances much more than if you just admit it upfront.

Ultimately, if the recruiter feels a candidate has the competency and fits well for the organization, they have every chance of being hired, irrespective of being fired from their previous. Showing that you have learned from your past mistakes and mentioning how you have reformed helps.

2. Be Open And Honest

Do not try to hide anything from the employer. Be honest about your mistakes and show the efforts you have made to correct them. An employee who is genuine and does not behave pretentiously will always be appreciated.

Everyone is going to have flaws, but the least you can do is be honest about them and take steps to rectify them. You may also talk about what those negative experiences taught you and how you grew from them to become a better version of yourself.

3. For Personal Reasons

Sometimes there may be certain personal details that are connected to our quitting or being booted from our former jobs. Should one answer in such cases? Simply put, yes. You can take certain measures to curb the situation, but it is best not to avoid the question altogether.

If you have to reveal personal information, ask the interviewer to keep it confidential. You’ll find that, in most cases, they will be willing to oblige. You can also try to state it briefly and avoid giving out too many details.

Another point to consider is that a lot of candidates may misuse the personal reason card to hide crucial details, which a recruiter should know. They do so, fearing it may hinder their odds of being recruited. Such kinds of practices should be avoided.

4. Choose Your Words Wisely

It often occurs during interviews that a candidate’s choice of words lets them down. The message they want to convey may be right, and they just want to be honest, but they use negative language. Maintaining an appropriate tone during the conversation is also essential. This leaves a bad impression on interviewers.

5. Brush Up on Communication

For this, it is important to improve one’s communication skills. Communication is vital, not just for interviews of any kind but even when you enter the organization. A typically undervalued part of communication is listening. Being an active listener always helps, along with speaking clearly and confidently. Having an understanding of communication styles is also useful.

6. Avoid Bad-Mouthing

Sometimes the company you were in or the bosses you worked with treated you unjustly. This may force you to exit the company. Even if it truly is the case and you still have grudges against them, it is best to not speak negatively about them during the interview.

This will make the employer feel like you can do the same with them if things do not work out at the firm. It can lead to a lack of trust between you and the recruiter. Hence, always make it a rule to avoid speaking badly about former companies and bosses during interviews.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What is a good reason for leaving a job?

Many reasons may be considered good for leaving a job. Reasons that show a desire for growth and self-improvement are ideal. Reasons like greater scope for advancement, growth opportunities, learning opportunities, etc. If you have a reason that you feel is not good, avoid hiding it. Be honest and describe how you learned and changed from the experience.

2. How do I decide what to put as a reason for leaving a job?

The most important thing is to be honest and authentic about your reasons for leaving a job. If you feel your reason may not sound good, you can curb the damage by explaining how you learned from the experience and also wording things a bit more tactfully.

3. to explain leaving a job for mental health reasons?

The key thing here is to mention this without being too critical of your former company and bosses. You can do this by stating that the company and bosses were fine, but you just couldn’t fit well into the environment. Sometimes the worker hired and the company do go well together without being the fault of either party. You can state that this caused you stress and led to mental health issues, which made you quit.

4. How to explain the reason for leaving a job?

The most important thing is to word things well while being honest. Avoid bad-mouthing former companies and bosses. Avoid hiding things and show that if you were at fault, you have learned from your mistakes.

5. How to write a reason for leaving a job?

If you have to give it in written form once again, most of the principles remain the same. It is also important to use formal language while at the same time ensuring the message is transmitted effectively.

6. Is relocation a good reason for leaving a job?

This varies depending on the reasons behind why you choose to relocate. Generally, it can be considered a good reason for quitting, as each individual has different priorities in life.


  • Jobs
  • Careers
  • How To
  • Make Money
  • Interviews
  • Other
  • Resume
  • Side Hustles
  • Headhunter
  • Passive Income
  • Students
Subscribe to our Newsletter

By clicking the "Subscribe" button, I agree and accept the privacy policy of Synkdup.

Synkdup Headhunter Banner
© Synkdup.com - All Rights Reserved