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rfisher
05-28-2010, 01:03 AM
What about something along the lines of...

"Over the span of 22 years, people come and go and the culture of the office can change dramatically. I was able to adjust most of the time, but eventually the culture changed enough to where it was no longer a good fit, and it was time for me to seek a better fit."

If they ask you to elaborate on that, tell them you respectfully choose not to, as bringing in other people's personal business into your interview seems inappropriate to you.

Maybe. If I were the interviewer, I'd interpret that as *doesn't adapt well to change* and would select another equally qualified candidate.

vesperholly
05-28-2010, 01:08 AM
Four little words: "Time for a change." BC doesn't need to elaborate any more than this, and IMO offering up excuses isn't going to help her case.

FiveRinger
05-28-2010, 01:58 AM
I don't like that people are encouraging BC to lie about her situation. Not a good idea. Most jobs make you fill out an application even if you present a resume. With a signature, a job application is a legally binding document. If you lie on a job application not only can you get disqualified for the job you are seeking, you can be terminated if it is discovered after you are hired. You wouldn't be eligible for unemployment because you were fired for cause. It's the same situation BC's in now, but worse.

I was advised by a career counselor that if you are ever terminated from a job it is best to say that the position ended or was eliminated. For you, it was. And BC isn't forced to fabricate some story that she would have to remember. That's not a good idea under the best of circumstances and I don't want to put BC under some unnecessary pressure. Interviews are stressful enough.

I used to think that if you committed gross conduct you wouldn't get unemployment. My neighbor made a liar out of me. She worked as a nurse's aid for a state mental hospital. She had a verbal altercation with a nurse and threatened to put the woman's head through a wall. She wasn't physically threatened by the nurse. Her employer, the state, contested her claim. She appealed. And, by someone's grace, she won her appeal. I don't understand it. But the lesson is to never assume you don't qualify for unemployment because you don't know. Each situation is different.

MacMadame
05-28-2010, 02:30 AM
My company allows us to surf the net at work so I'm not violating any policies by posting this.

Anyway, if you are nervous about how your internet access will look, I encourage you to clear your browser's history on a regular basis and also take advantage of any features your browser has to let you surf anonymously. For example, Google Chrome let's you bring up an "Incognito" window.

genegri
05-28-2010, 03:13 AM
When talking to your interviewer about the situation, the less said the better.

I like FiveRinger's suggestion, just say "the position was eliminated" and leave it at that. The more you try to explain it away, the more suspicious it sounds.

And definitely do not lie. Anything you say needs to be true, but you don't need to include everything. Omit details that do not look good for you.

Prancer
05-28-2010, 04:21 AM
BaileyCatts, did you attend college anywhere?

I ask because a lot of colleges offer career counseling to alumni. Since you haven't had to look for a job for a long time, you might benefit from getting some advice on resume preparation and job hunting. Like with everything else, some things have changed in the last 22 years.

Also, most jobs are not publicly advertised and college career centers often have job listings and access to job listings that aren't available to the general public.

Debbie S
05-28-2010, 04:42 AM
I like FiveRinger's suggestion, just say "the position was eliminated" and leave it at that. But that would be a lie. It makes it sound like she got laid off. I was laid off when my position actually was eliminated. I didn't read my boss's e-mails. I suspect a lot of people offer this as a reason when their circumstances are suspect and that's probably why I had to put up with multiple interviews where I was asked questions like "Why was your position eliminated?" (uh, b/c it was one of the few in the dept that hadn't already been eliminated) And it wasn't just the question, it was how it was asked, like I was guilty until proven innocent.

Sorry, this is a hot button for me.

I think BC needs to make her answer as short as possible - left to pursue other opportunities, was looking for a new challenge, etc. No need to elaborate and definitely don't talk about previous supervisors or co-workers.

MacMadame
05-28-2010, 05:39 AM
Having looked for a job when I was with a place for 10.5 years, I've had to deal with this question. In my case, interviewers seemed more concerned that I was a stick in the mud who wouldn't keep up with the latest whiz bang doodas.

What I said was: my company was very large and my job changed several times during that time period so it was like having 3 different jobs. However, at this point I wasn't learning enough and needed a change.

This seemed to work for me...

In BC's case, she can legitimately say that she moved into her current position to follow a boss that she had a good working relationship with but he left the company soon after and that changed everything.

Angelskates
05-28-2010, 06:31 AM
But that would be a lie. It makes it sound like she got laid off.

She was laid off.


I think BC needs to make her answer as short as possible - left to pursue other opportunities, was looking for a new challenge, etc. No need to elaborate and definitely don't talk about previous supervisors or co-workers.

But they would all be lies too. She didn't leave to pursue other opportunities, she wasn't looking for a new challenge; she was fired.

It's very easy to say no need to elaborate, except that in many cases, those interviewing know all these answers and what they may mean, so often ask the interviewee to elaborate. This is a huge advantage of taking some classes, getting career counselling and all of those other suggestions, they will help BC formulate honest and unemotionally answers.

michiruwater
05-28-2010, 06:53 AM
I thought laid off and fired were different things? No?...

Angelskates
05-28-2010, 06:59 AM
I thought laid off and fired were different things? No?...

Possibly, to some people. Not to me ;) but I can understand how they could be, to me laid off is a nicer way of saying fired. Neither one of them mean you chose to leave, both mean you were asked/told to leave.

genevieve
05-28-2010, 07:01 AM
From the perspective of potential employers, laid off and fired are completely different.

Prancer
05-28-2010, 07:02 AM
She was laid off.

No, she wasn't. And it would be a lie to say or imply that she was.

Laid off means the company had to let you go, usually for economic reasons. That's very different from being fired.

Saying the position was eliminated would also be a lie.


It's very easy to say no need to elaborate, except that in many cases, those interviewing know all these answers and what they may mean, so often ask the interviewee to elaborate. This is a huge advantage of taking some classes, getting career counselling and all of those other suggestions, they will help BC formulate honest and unemotionally answers.

Just admitting to being fired isn't necessarily a bad idea, either; lots of people get fired and have to look for another job. There are good ways to admit to it and bad ways to admit to it. There's pretty good advice here:

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/237138/how_to_do_a_job_interview_after_being.html

http://www.edubook.com/how-to-handle-job-interviews-after-being-fired/1402/

http://www.cvtips.com/interview/how-to-handle-the-questions-why-were-you-fired.html

Note that every one recommends that you don't lie.

Jayar
05-28-2010, 07:30 AM
I look at it this way... if you get unemployment benefits, you were laid off. If you don't, you were fired.

WindSpirit
05-28-2010, 07:56 AM
Anyway, if you are nervous about how your internet access will look, I encourage you to clear your browser's history on a regular basis and also take advantage of any features your browser has to let you surf anonymously. For example, Google Chrome let's you bring up an "Incognito" window. If they really want to see what someone is doing, they're not going to check their browser/computer's history, they're going to put a program on their computer that either records any screen they see or every letter they type (or both). Those programs are pretty common, easy to install, cheap, legal and very convenient. Your boss might be getting an email update with screenshots of what you've been looking at every day and you wouldn't even know.

The golden rule is: do not visit any websites you wouldn't want your boss to know about and don't type any stuff that you wouldn't want to leak. I know it's hard, people get so complacent, but you've been warned.

Even if they don't use any programs on your computer to spy on you, be careful even when using your own private email account while you're at work. It doesn't matter that you have a password, etc. All emails go through the company's servers. There are copies of every single email you've written on there (they may delete it after some time or they may not).