A very common job interview question is the one that is looking for an answer on why you actually want to leave your job? By asking ‘what do you like about your job?’ the interviewer gets insights into your preferences and what you might be looking for in another job. Basically, he or she wants to know why you want to leave your position.
The main goal of the interviewer is to find out if you will be a good fit with the company, the team and it’s team members. Know that this is not a trick question where only a couple of answers are right. It’s also, in general, not a dealbreaker that will end your chances of getting the job if you don’t answer the question in a correct way. However, just like any other job interview question, if you answer too nonchalant, thoughtless or uninterested it can reduce your chance of receiving an offer or even progressing to the next round.
The ‘what do you like about your job?’ question can also be asked as:
Why do you want to leave your current job?
What will you miss most about your previous job?
Why is the interviewer asking about your current job?
This interview question can come up when you’re applying for a job, but you’re still working at another company too. The interviewer is curious about your positive experiences during your work and wants to find out what makes you tick. Your answer gives the interviewer insights into what kind of company culture you thrive and if the work environment of the job that you’re applying for is suitable for you. In other words, they are looking for commonalities.
As an example, if your answer indicates that you thrive in a collaborative work environment, the interviewer might provide more information about the internal team dynamics. It’s also up to you to find commonalities between what you like and what the job offers, prior to the interview. For instance, by analyzing the job description and company thoroughly. Use this information to your advantage and make sure you have an answer ready before this interview question comes up. If your responses do not show that there is a common ground between what you like and what the company can offer, this could get in the way of getting an offer.
Tips to answer ‘what do you like about your job?’
To be able to answer this, and similar, interview questions make sure that you create a list about what you liked about your previous job, and how that job compares to the current opportunity. To make a start, ask yourself the following questions:
- What did you like most about your last position and your employer?
- What did your co-workers and boss praise you for? What was your performance review like?
- What similarities are there between this employer and your previous employer?
- What components of this position are similar to your current and previous positions?
- What part of this opportunity relates to what you liked about other positions you have had?
- What about this employer relates to what you liked about working for your current or previous employers?
Below we set out some short example answers that you can give when the interviewer asks you about what you like about your job.
Sample answer 1:
‘What I specifically liked about my previous job is that everyone in the team shared the same vision and was dedicated to the mission. This created a strong work environment in which people were willing to work for each other and the team.’
Sample answer 2:
‘After 2 years of working at that company, I got promoted to senior data scientist within my team. I’ve been working on developing my data analysis skills for a couple of years and I’m looking for a job where I can continue to develop those skills, and possibly grow to manager-level and run my own team.’
Sample answer 3:
‘I enjoyed working one-on-one with clients, which is also what appealed to me in this role. Working with numerous different types of clients has allowed me to develop my ability to communicate clearly, not only with clients but also with team members.’
Follow-up Question – Why do you want to leave your current job?
You’ve given the interviewer honest answers on what you like about the position and what you liked about your previous jobs. You should prepare for the follow-up question: ‘So, why do you want to leave?’
There are several reasons why you want to move on to another position. For instance, think of reasons such as:
- You want to learn more in a new environment
- You want to take on more responsibility
- You would like to take on less responsibility
- You want to relocate
- You want to change careers
- You want to gain or develop a skill
- Company reorganizations caused a change in job content
- You want to have a shorter commute to work
- You want to improve your work/life balance
Use the reasons above to start your answer off. It’s up to you to provide more context around it to substantiate why you want to leave and join another company.
Job Interview Topics – Common Job Interview Questions & Answers
Below you can find a list of common job interview topics. Each link will direct you to an article regarding the specific topics that discuss commonly asked interview questions. Furthermore, each article discusses why the interviewer asks these questions and how you answer them!
- Career Change
- Career Goals
- Conflict Resolution
- Creative Thinking
- Cultural Fit
- Customer Service
- Growth Potential
- Honesty & Integrity
- Job Satisfaction
- Entry-Level & No experience
- Prioritization & Time Management
- Situational & Scenario-based
- Stress Management
- Telephone Interview
- Work Ethic