Monday, January 27, 2014

“I don’t like working for my boss.”

If you are interviewing for a new role because you are not happy working for your current boss there is a delicate balance about being honest without negatively impacting your candidacy for a new role.  A few samples to consider. 

If you have a mean/unfair boss. 

This one is tough and I hear it A LOT!  It is most professional to keep your statements focused on what you are looking for vs. the risk of sounding like you are badmouthing someone else.   If you feel your boss is mean, address the opposite situation you are seeking.   If your boss speaks cruelly and disrespectfully you can state.  “I am looking for a culture where communication is respectful, questions are welcome and I will have the opportunity to be mentored and mentor others in a positive way.”

Your boss does not give clear direction and is indecisive causing extra work.

“I am seeking an environment where goals are clearly set and progress is supported with timely decisions.”

Your boss demands more time from you than you would like to work.

“I am looking for more work life balance.”  You should give an indication of what hours you are willing to work.  If the company you are interviewing with is going to require more hours than you are going to be happy with… is better to know up front it isn’t a fit than after you get started.  Our industry is also famous for crunch times with long hours.  So make sure you a clear.  I don’t mind working extra before big deadlines but I do not want to be working 11 hour days seven days a week indefinitely. 

Your boss micromanages your work.

“I am looking for an environment where I can fully utilize my skills and expertise to contribute to the growth of a brand.  I enjoy working where there is autonomy and accountability.”

If your interviewer senses there is conflict it is likely they will dig in and try to get specifics and more sensitive information. “Do you feel your current boss is a micromanager?”  It is best to keep redirecting the conversation with a positive statement about your current role and what is optimal for you to make the greatest contribution moving forward.  “I have learned a great deal in my current role and am ready take on new challenges in an environment that encourages independent decision making and accountability.”  Continue to steer the conversation toward your abilities by providing specific examples of your successes.

Sometimes people truly get stuck in a bad situation.  However, if you find yourself leaving more than one job because you don’t “like” working for your boss it is important to make sure you have realistic expectations and that you have tried approaching the relationship directly to make improvements.  Too much job movement, for the wrong reasons will have a negative impact on your career growth. 

Have you had a “mean/unfair” boss?  Have you been in an interview where you have been asked what you don’t like about your current role?  Have you left a job because you no longer wanted to work with a specific person?  Career coaches like Kate can help you evaluate these situations and identify options.  At Apparel Resource we will help you fine tune how to articulate these challenges if you have decided to make a job change.

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