The Pharma Sales Interview Breakthrough Blog
Time for another curve ball...(check the Blog Archives for previous posts and subscribe to the RSS feed or the Twitter feed @michaelwmuth for future posts).
Why did you leave past jobs? What did you learn from those experiences? How have you applied what you learned?
Why do you want to leave your current job?
This is a really good series of questions for a number of reasons. Primarily though, these questions can expose trends...good ones and bad ones.
When asked why you left previous jobs...it's important to emphasize that you left because you were "pursuing new opportunities for development and growth". I encourage you to think long and hard about what those specifically were. Be able to provide greater depth and context than just "opportunities for development and growth".
If your real reason was because of "bad boss" "low pay" or something that could be categorized as self serving,..then it will reflect poorly on you. It could signal red flags to those interviewing you and you definitely do not want that.
The follow up question "what did you learn?" and "how have you applied..?"...as I mentioned...will require some real thought on your part. In your interview prep (as outlined in my book) you will want to identify key aspects of the position you are interviewing for. Of course, This would be a good opportunity to pull those aspects through in the interview.
For example, "in my sales job with XYZ company, key learnings included how to effectively analyze my business and identify key trends...in turn, those learnings I applied to future positions...etc. etc."
The question asking "why do you want to leave your current job?" is equally as important as the previous but will need to be answered in a slightly different way. Here, instead of being focused on the past learnings, etc., you will want to emphasize the future.
For example, "I love the current company I work for. They are great people and I have enjoyed the experience immensly. However, my future focus is working for your organization because of:
1) Well thought out reason #1
2) Well thought out reason #2
3) Well thought out reason #3
The reasons you identify here...again...have to be well thought out and will need to align with the brand you are trying to create and demonstrate your nuanced understanding of the organization...again.....my book can help get there to that level with this.
For example, "First of all, the investments that your organization has made to the research and development of treatments for XYZ disease state demonstrate a strong commitment to this space. I recently read that your CEO...etc. etc. This is a passion of mine because of...etc. etc.
Again, you will need to build your response out based on what you feel will work best for you. But, again, it needs to be future focused. You are NOT running away from an organization...but running to an organization that you have a passion for...and your research will illustrate that passion and commitment to the company and to the opportunity.
Please chime in with your comments...AND, please share this with those you think could benefit! Have a great week and be safe!
The "Breakthrough" Book