My manager has formed a grudge against me and basically portrayed me as having done nothing all of last year. He's also gone behind my back and hired a replacement for me. The reason that he's given to the Management is that I don't have technical skills when that is not the case and a couple of other BS reasons. To wit, the current role does not require significant technical skills (I'm fairly technical and have an engineering background but this is a non-technical role to a large extent)

I'm now trying to move out of my current company and actively looking for new jobs.

A common question that is asked is why do you want to leave your current company (For context, my company has a very good external reputation and is considered a "unicorn"). How should I answer this?

While I don't want to speak negatively about my current organization which is, for most parts, a great place to work in; most of the interview tips and prep that I've read mention that it is bad form and a bad idea to talk negatively about one's current manager as well, especially for the role that I'm in.

(Apologies for a fair amount of obfuscation and generic-ness but I know my manager is on Stackoverflow and I don't want this to be public)

Edit: I understand why it is not a good idea to bad-mouth an employer and as I mentioned in my original post, I don't want to either. I have a problem with my direct manager but I don't want to air dirty laundry


2 Answers 2


You simply do not mention your manager at all. Do not say anything negative about him or the company. You say something like you are looking for new challenges or to broaden your experience if the potential job offers that. You say something like you are really interested in their business domain of it is in a different one than the one you are in. Or you can even say that you feel that the corporate culture doesn't suit you if the company you are looking at is significantly different as far as culture than the one you are in. Be prepared for questions about what kind of corporate culture you would be more comfortable in if that is the case. Focus on what you like about the company you are interviewing with as a reason to leave.


Say that you feel you needed a change of pace.

That while your current company is a great place to work, you simply don't feel that your role is challenging any more, and that you want to expand your skills set.

That you want a shorter commute, or a better work-life balance (if that company is closer, or prides itself on that aspect).

You could also say that you were forwarded the job by a friend/recruiter, and that as happy as you are with your current job the opportunity they're offering simply piqued your interest.

Do not, under any circumstances, complain about or otherwise demonize your boss.

I would stay away from comments on the company culture, as you've been with them for 4+ years. Had culture really been an issue you would have quit long before then.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .