An interview could always present unexpected questions. Be ready to address a variety of topics—including how to explain why you were fired from a previous job. Not every job is a perfect fit for every kind of employee, so as long as you know how to properly and professionally explain why you were fired, it won’t count as a major blemish on your resume.
Follow these tips to discuss this sensitive subject in a professional manner.
How To Explain Why You Were Fired In An Interview
Don’t trash talk your former boss.
Expressing resentment toward your previous employer—the one who fired you—will make you appear immature and bitter. Rather than bashing your old boss, fess up to your mistakes. Hold yourself accountable, and demonstrate how you have learned from your past errors and how you won’t repeat those mistakes. Frame it in this approach: “Here’s what I did wrong, here’s what I learned from it, and here’s what I do differently now.” Don’t bring sour grapes to the interview table.
Never lie about it.
If your employer (former or future) catches your blatant fib, your credibility will completely dissolve. Demonstrate your own integrity and accountability by being honest about why you were fired. It’s hard to sugarcoat this kind of discussion, so the best way to approach it is through honesty.
Be positive and to the point.
Whether you misaligned with personalities or business performance in your previous role, talk about why it turned out to be a positive experience. Take away all notions of blame; rather than declaring, “They never informed me of their expectations,” say, “I didn’t have a clear understanding of their expectations, and it led to an uncomfortable situation in the office.” One major tip for how to explain why you were fired: Don’t deliver a rambling speech. Practice beforehand what you wish to express.
Above all, it’s important to show a future employer what you learned from being fired. The best kind of wisdom often comes from our failures.
What tips do you have for how to explain why you were fired during an interview? Let us know!
JobsInNH.com's mission is to help job seekers find real, local, jobs in New Hampshire and reach their career goals.
With JobsInNH.com, job seekers can conveniently search jobs by location, category, duration, and more. Users can also browse jobs by category and/or city. All employment opportunities are conveniently organized to facilitate the search of jobs - including full-time, part-time and temporary positions, as well as seasonal and volunteer work. Job seekers can save their custom search preferences, and even choose to receive automated Job Alert emails on a daily or weekly basis.
JobsInNH.com is New Hampshire's number one resource for job seekers and employers, offering insightful advice and articles through our award-winning newsletters and social media channels. JobsInNH.com is actively involved in the communities we serve, partnering with local chambers of commerce, sports teams, trade associations and career centers, and attending local career fairs and business-to-business events.