Sometimes, you end up quitting your job in a hurry after only a few months. Other times, you get laid off.
Regardless, when you’re on the hunt for a new job, you have to be able to tell recruiters why you haven’t worked in a while.
Liz Wessel, whose startup WayUp connects college students and recent grads with job opportunities, has some suggestions on how to explain that gap on your résumé.
In a recent Facebook Live interview with Business Insider, she said that your explanation for why you’re out of work really depends on your specific circumstances.
However, no matter what, you’ve got to keep things positive. Even if you quit because your boss was terrible or the company was a mess, venting will only make you look petty.
“Take it as a learning opportunity and talk about it as a learning opportunity,” Wessel said.
She even provided an example of how to change your wording:
“Instead of saying something like along the lines of, ‘I took this one job and then I realized I hate sales,’ you could say, ‘I took this one job and I realized I’m actually a little bit more introverted and like to be more company-facing instead of client-facing. Here are three reasons why, and here are the roles that I think I would love as a result.'”
Regardless of why you left your last job, it’s crucial to stay positive and highlight what you learned from your past opportunity.