Posted by Brian McCullough
It’s never fun to think about the awkward situations that you will run into when you reach the interviewing stage of the job application process. You never know exactly what will be asked, but you can anticipate – and sometimes that anticipation leaves you biting your nails off to say the least.
This sentiment is often true when you know that there is information on your resume that you know could come up during the interview – like why did you leave your last job? If you’re concerned that this information might be an issue, you might want to get some of the explaining over with on your resume. This way, you just may have less to explain when the time comes.
Don’t Sidestep the Issue on Your Resume
Because the reason that you left your last company is bound to pop up in the interview – and this is something you absolutely cannot lie about – it is a good idea to make mention of it in your resume if you think it is a reason that could raise eyebrows. Of course, you don’t need go into great detail because this is not what the resume is for, but by mentioning it, you can implant a bit of the detail into a hiring manager’s head before seeing you.
For instance, if you were let go from your company, there are a couple of reasons that this could have occurred. One is that you were outright terminated from your position and another is that you were laid off. If you were laid off due to downsizing because of the financial crisis, you could mention this detail in your resume. Because employers understand the gravity of the Great Recession, some will not ask any further questions.
Let Your Cover Letter Do Some Work Too
If you want to go into further detail about why you were let go from your position, you could allow your cover letter to do some of the talking as well. For instance, you could mention how much you enjoyed working for your previous employer and that you remained committed to its goal. However, due to the financial crisis and the need to downsize, you and 2,000 others were let go from their positions.
You could even go into short detail about how the experience was difficult at first but in the end it made you stronger in character. Or that it brought your family closer together, something you’ll always cherish (of course, only say something like this if it’s true). If you talk about your departure rather than sidestepping it, it could actually make an employer more interested in you, which is why it’s good to go ahead and tackle it head on.
So are you ready to pull your job search together? If so then it’s good to really think about how you’re going to approach the reason that you left your job. And always keep in mind that while it’s good to make mention of it in your resume and cover letter, it could always come up in your interview, so be prepared.
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