Imagine you're interviewing for your dream job, and you've answered all their technical questions well. You've told them why you're capable, how all of your education and hard work has led to this moment, but then they ask the dreaded, "What do you miss about your last job?"

Jordan Peele sweating profusely.

Don't panic! We'll break down how to answer this question, even if your last job wasn't a positive experience.

What are they REALLY asking?

You may feel like there's no right answer here, but what the interviewer wants to know is:

How your last job connects you to this new one

The interviewer may not see how your experience in the old job is relevant to this new one. You have to create the bridge that connects your last job to this new one.

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That can be from the work, the relationships, or the growth opportunities. This is your time to highlight how your last job has helped you.

If you'll fit into their company culture

Let's face it, you left your last job for a reason. Answering this question with professionalism shows that you're able to communicate well in a professional environment. The interviewer can see more of your personality and what your attitude is like.

How to make the perfect answer

Keep your answer honest but with a positive spin. The interviewer doesn't want to hear why your old job's management sucks, they want to hear how that experience has helped you grow. When you're thinking of your answer, consider:

  • Responsibilities, tasks, and work that you enjoyed

  • Employees, customers, and people who left a positive impression on you

  • Work culture and management

A woman burning sage in a room. The text reads,

Highlight one of these things and connect it to the job you want!

What does a good answer look like?

  • "I'll miss the fast-paced environment. Although it's a jump from cashier to social media specialist, a lot of the skills I learned will transfer over to this new position. Learning how to talk to customers while accurately checking out their groceries taught me how to multi-task under pressure."

  • "I'll miss the relationships I built at my last job. My supervisor there really helped me develop and grow professionally. So I'll miss having that mentor figure so readily available because they're the reason why I feel confident I can do a great job here."

What if you can't think of anything positive to say?

Phil Dunphy says,

Turn that negative into a positive by focusing on what you learned! Bad job experiences can give you a better idea of the job you want. For example, instead of saying, "I won't miss answering emails all day," you could say:

  • "I'll miss how the job helped me grow. It gave me a better idea of what I want out of my career. I learned that while an office setting isn't a great fit for me, one where I can work outside like this job is a natural fit."


What's wrong with this answer? "I'll miss having as much face-to-face interactions with the customers. It'll be an adjustment to move into an office environment where I don't see customers as often."

Take Action

A woman in her home office asks,

Preparing answers for common interview questions will make you more confident in your interview! To get ready for this question:


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