So I have had some unfortunate luck when it comes to jobs and I am looking for advice. My first job out of college I was at for roughly a year. I left because i did not see myself continuing in that line of buisness. My second job, about 7 months in informed the company that they were relocating. I unfortunately could not commit to the relocation. I stayed as long as I could and started my next job about 3 days before the relocation. I was at my 2nd job for a year and 2 months. My 3rd job I took had some red flags (which in hindsight I should have noticed) that I ignored because I needed a job before the relocation. I got a sense that they were going to close our office permanently so I started the hunt again. I left after 7 months, and while frustrated that my time was short, it proved to be a good move because about a week later the company was shut down. My 4th job I was at for a year and 10 months. I left this company due to a better opportunity with a company that was more ethical and flexible in their culture. This leaves me at job 5. Here is where my question comes in...how do I explain my circumstances to potential new employers? I feel like without context I look like a job hopper however, I just got really unlucky. Does anyone have suggestions on how to explain my situation in a light that says "please trust me, I am loyal". Thanks!


1 Answer 1


You don't say where you live. That is relevant. The US job market over the last several years has been quite volatile.

If this all happened in the same geographic area, then the recruiters who will see your resume are going to know almost as much about your situation as you do, and they will know that your story is not that worrisome.

I interviewed a guy once, while I was at Nortel in Dallas. He was concerned that his resume LOOKED like he was job-hopping, because his employer had had three different owners, and names, in as many years. I explained to him that this wasn't a problem: everyone in the Metroplex knew the story, and we all also knew that, under the frequent sales, his actual employer was a very good outfit.

A lot of guys were in your shoes in aerospace in the US in the 1960s. My father was one of them. For a long time, I believed he'd had an uncanny instinct for when the layoffs were about to hit, and got us out of town one short step ahead of the headsman. Later, I found out that he'd in fact gotten caught some of those times.

Here's the real thing. Some recruiters are going to see your history, and dismiss you. That's OK. You don't want to work for a place that does that superficial a hiring screen. Some are going to see your history, know some of the details, and recognize good judgment on your part. Some are going to look at what you've done, observe that you've demonstrated a lot of flexibility, and want to hear more.

Be prepared to explain why you went to the new job, what made it better than the previous one. Not being able to relocate at their whim is something that happens. Realizing the company was about to pull the chain and being proactive is a GOOD thing. Wanting to go to a better place, with better ethics, is a good thing.

So: why are you looking to jump again? This is the question they're going to ask.

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