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I am a computer programmer and I live in a mid-sized city. A year ago, I started making plans to find a better job and move out. About 3 months ago, just as my dream job was coming into focus, I met someone and fell in love. I'm not an impulsive person and neither are they. Had we had time to date longer, we would marry each other.

I got the dream job, but now I'm re-examining job opportunities in my hometown, on the off-chance I find something good. I don't have much time. When employers ask me "why I want this job", can I tell them it's because I met someone? I want them to be sympathetic to me, but I don't want to sound impulsive, because this is not impulse, however it seems to the reader.

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    Voting to close because 'unclear what you're asking"? Apparently over 100 people (just on one answer, whose answer is a mod) would disagree. – Chris E Jun 21 '16 at 12:47
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    Comments are not for extended discussion; relationship advice has been moved to chat. – Monica Cellio Jun 21 '16 at 14:34
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    As for your love life, is this the first person you encountered? Everyone is smitten in the first couple-o months. You sound very impulsive and if you do bring this forward to your future employer he might think you're a silly billy. – Mathijs Jun 22 '16 at 12:58
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    "I'm engaged to be married, so I want to be near my fiancee." I can't see any way that this little lie would come back to bite you. Not all engagements end in marriage, after all. – TonyK Jun 22 '16 at 21:35
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I wouldn't say "I'm in love" directly. Best case is you get a sympathetic laugh, worst case it will come across as.. weird.

What I would say instead is something like, "I'm excited about your company for reasons-here. Also I'd like to stay in my hometown to be closer to friends and family."

This accomplishes your goal as well as coming across as positive, because you are also saying indirectly, "I am planning on staying in this town for a long time" which is generally seen as a positive.

  • This is good but it's worth emphasising to be careful not to make too big deal out of the "I'd like to stay in my hometown" part, since it might needlessly draw attention to the fact you have recently been thinking about moving. For most candidates, it'll simply go without saying that of course they want to stay in the city they live in and are applying for jobs in. Focus on why you want this specific job, like someone who hasn't recently considered relocating would. – user568458 Jun 23 '16 at 14:45
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The problem with saying "I'm in love" or "I've met someone" is the message it may inadvertently send some employers. You're basically telling them that (potentially, in their opinion) it doesn't take much to get you to relocate. While relationships aren't necessarily marriages these days, without marriage they are still likely to be viewed as transitory. There's a significant difference in perception with "I'm moving here because I'm getting married" to "I'm moving here because I've fallen in love." While it may not be completely based in reality, a marriage implies permanence. Love, or a relationship you can literally just walk away from does not.

So there are two potential negatives. One is that you could be viewed as someone who will move purely for emotional reasons. The second is that you'll leave for similar reasons.

Were I an employer and I was told that a prospect was relocating because he fell in love, I'd wonder "will he leave if he's no longer in love?" or "if he falls in love again, will he just drop us and go?"

This is yet another case where revealing too much personal information is a bad idea. Just tell them "I have a lot of friends and family here and ..." then say something positive about the community and how much you love it.

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    There's a 3rd reason: it may show your employer that you have a hard time separating your personal life from your professional one. – Radu Murzea Jun 20 '16 at 20:03
  • Excellent. That's a point I was trying to make but you did so more succinctly than I. – Chris E Jun 20 '16 at 20:37
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    And a 4th reason: it signals a lack of awareness of workplace norms. Not only is it a bad answer to the question (they're asking why this position interests you), it's a weird answer. Most people with office experience will be aware that it's not the place to bring up touchy-feely stuff. – Lilienthal Jun 21 '16 at 9:27
  • As an employer, I wouldn't worry so much about your "positive" emotions and the way you take it to the extreme of mentioning it. Rather, it's the negative emotions and what kind of words and/or actions will come out of that. – Zuzlx Jun 21 '16 at 18:28
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You really don't need to explain your reasons for wanting to remain in the city that you're already in!

When you're applying for a job, and you get asked why you want it, then tell them why you want it. Surely you can find something positive other than "it's a job, and it's in the right city". You'd need to do that if you were moving to a bigger city, too, you know!

Since you're already in work, surely there must be something to attract you to the roles that you're applying for? If not, why not just stay in your current job?

If you literally cannot think of a single positive thing to say, then stick to meaningless platitudes like the job offering interesting challenges and the company having a good reputation. Don't tell them that the only attractive feature of the job is that it's in the right city - regardless of what the reason is for that city being the right one.

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    +1 and in fact, immediately talking about why you want to stay in the city you live in unprompted gives away and draws attention to the fact that you have recently been thinking about leaving! – user568458 Jun 23 '16 at 14:31
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No, such a response oversteps professional boundaries and would be inappropriate.

The company wants to know why you want the job for you, and not so you can use the job to help you fulfill your personal desires

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    How is "you want the job for you" different from "you can use the job to help you fulfill your personal desires"? Don't the vast majority of us take jobs to fulfill our personal desires, such as keeping a roof over our heads and food on our tables? – GreenMatt Jun 21 '16 at 16:31
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    @GreenMatt The problem is that the love affair has not the slightest relation to the position being sought. The reasons for wanting the job should be professional such as skill development, passion for the work etc... – Anthony Jun 21 '16 at 23:22
  • You're missing the point. The phrases "you can use the job to help you fulfill your personal desires" and "you want the job for you" can be easily interpreted to mean the same thing. – GreenMatt Jun 23 '16 at 1:05
  • Totally agree with @Anthony! There is always a difference between being honest, and being professional. – comxyz Mar 21 '17 at 1:26
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"I met a girl, we have been dating, and want to be by her."

I hire TONS of people. I love honesty. I love the slight hint of unprofessionalism during interviews. I am hiring people, not robots. Love it when someone tells me they just like to make money, love it when people diss a product of ours, just like the real person to come out.

So either you are a normal guy who is in love and mention it for a minute and then your skills the next 59 minutes are you are the kooky dude in love that wants to talk about it for an hour. I hire the normal guy in a heartbeat but the kooky dude I just talk to for an hour.

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    +1! Finally, a recruiter who acknowledges that people are entitled to make some irrational choices in their lives. – Dmitry Grigoryev Jun 23 '16 at 7:14
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The exact wording "I'm in Love" is a bit inappropriate. It comes off like you have a mad crush on someone you've only briefly met. Hopefully the other person in the relationship is as much in love with you.

I can say with confidence that if you let them know the reason for staying is because of a relationship, it will impress them with your honesty and give them confidence you're likely to stay.

ALL employers value an employee who is in a committed relationship over someone who is single, if you have the maturity to commit to a long term relationship, it says a lot about the type of person you are and about how you will get along in the workplace.

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You tell them that you are looking for a position in or very close to your home town for strong personal reasons. With a smile on your face. If you want a job in your home town so you can look 24/7 after your sick mother, I feel very sorry for you, but I don't hire you. If you want a job in your home town to start a happy family life, that's great.

Next you tell them how lucky you are that an excellent company like theirs has an open position right where you were looking for one.

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I wouldn't say that.

This COULD be seen as honesty, but also (more likely) you could be seen as someone who would leave your current job and city on a whim should this relationship end. Just as you did when it started (in their eyes).

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