Difficult Interview Question: Why Didn’t You Move Up in Your Previous Company?
Commitment is one of the best things to have on your resume. Employers want to see that you are not a chronic job quitter, and that you are willing to work long term at a company when the company meets your goals.
It does have a couple of downsides, however. For one thing, fewer jobs may mean fewer experiences to put on your resume. Still, this is unlikely as you have probably achieved a lot by working at one job for so long (even if you have a problem remembering all of it). The other issue that may come up is a lack of growth. If you stayed at the same position your entire time with your previous employer, the interviewer may wonder why you never moved up, which is usually the next step for those that work longer than a few years.
How to Answer
If the answer doesn’t reflect poorly on you, give an actual answer. Usually this involves no jobs opening up within the company (for example, having the same supervisor the entire time you worked in the organization). If the answer does reflect poorly on you, focus instead on how it didn’t meet your vision.
“I don’t know. They did not offer me any better positions and I did not want to ask very much. I didn’t mind my work.”
This is not nearly an ambitious enough answer.
“My job responsibilities were constantly evolving, so while my title may not have changed, the role I played in the company grew greater with each passing year.”
This is a good default answer, because it’s almost always 100% true in some ways. If prompted to ask whether or not you wanted a job in a higher up role, you can state that you did believe any of the open positions met your long term goals.
Take Away Interview Tips
- Make yourself look good.
- Truth is acceptable when the answer is not in your control (such as a low turnover at the company).