So, you’re a job hopper.
If so, the question, "Why have you changed jobs so frequently?" may require a more strategic response. A job hopper is not as bad now as it was 20 years ago so there is still hope! Although you have not found the right “fit” yet, loyalty is still very important to employers. You must be able to convince a hiring manager that you can commit to their company.
There are many ways you can use job hopping to your advantage while in the interview process. By following the below guidelines, you can answer this question in a positive light.
Reasons outside of your control
If you have been laid off in the past, this is not job hopping. Job hopping is quitting positions voluntarily to pursue other options one may have. The problem with this is many people chase a similar opportunity without any advancement with a different company. This is a red flag to a hiring manager as it shows you are not happy with any position you hold.
Regardless of what you have done in the past, build your response around something you could not control. Now, we are not saying to lie as work situations have many factors that can affect you personally. This is assuming you have held each job for more than a couple months. If you have changed jobs more than once a year, you have some explaining to do!
For more interview questions, check out our article on the 50 Top Interview Questions And Answers!
As you change jobs and gain experience, you responsibilities will grow as well, right? Ideally! If you cannot show that your skills have developed with each job, this question will be tough. Try and relate specifics from each of your job titles and explain why you are the perfect fit for the position.
If you are a new grad, job hopping can just mean you are looking for the right fit. Well, how do you know that the company you are applying for is right for you now? At some point, you should question your career path if you are constantly changing jobs.
If this opportunity does suit you well, you must be convincing as to why.
It's not over
If you are a chronic job hopper, there is still hope! You are at an advantage considering you have seen multiple company cultures and operating styles. This experience can be very helpful in a newer company or a company looking for a facelift. Use the checklist below to structure your answer. This will give you the best opportunity to change a negative on your resume into a positive for the company!
Do NOT show that you left a similar position multiple times!
- Example: Quitting an executive assistant position for another. Try changing the job titles and include varying responsibilities if similar positions.
- Include any additional responsibilities gained from company to company. Consider ALL skills you have acquired and relate them to the requirements of the position you are applying for.
Explain realistic reasons for leaving and have a story to back them up!
- Be prepared to go into detail as the hiring manager will likely explore deeper. Lying will most likely hurt your chances further so don’t stray too far from the truth.
Show future dedication!
- Explain why this job is the end of your job seeking endeavors. If the job is not the right fit, consider a possible career change.
Now that you have the keys to answering this tough question, build your response. Show that you understand your lack of commitment in the past. This will show growth and maturity in your professional career. Hopefully, you are on the right track to finding your dream career. Good luck!