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Job Hopping Explained | Monster.comLearn the right way to talk about your job hopping.Job hopping can be a strategic way to move up in your career, but prospectiveemployers might look at your resume with one eyebrow raised. After all, theywant to hire someone who will commit to their company.That said, according to the Monster Future of Work: 2021 Outlook survey, 47%of employers said that job hopping is becoming less of a red flag as a resultof current market conditions. But if you’ve switched jobs a few times in a fewyears, be prepared to talk about it.You’re not the only job-hopping candidate out there. According to the mostrecent statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, wage and salary workershad been with their current employer for a median of 4.2 years in January2018. The tenure of workers ages 55 to 64 was 10.1 years, more than threetimes that of workers ages 25 to 34 (2.8 years). That indicates a generationalshift in attitude with regards to just how long it’s appropriate to remain ina job.Still, a recruiter who doesn’t know you beyond your resume may think you’re aflight risk if you have multiple short-term jobs. So, how do you explain yourbrief tenures and convince potential employers that you’ll be a loyalemployee? “It’s a bit of a tightrope walk,” says Teri DePuy, a Colorado-basedcareer coach at ICC, Inc. Here are six rules to follow when explaining whyyou’ve been job hopping.## Be transparentWhether you’ve had a string of bad luck or moved around in search of your truecalling, the question about your employment history is coming whether you likeit or not. The best way to handle it is to be honest about why you’ve made somany job changes. Maybe you were just pursuing the next great opportunity. Oryou had to escape a toxic boss. Or, perhaps you were subject to forces outsideyour control, like a layoff. Whatever the reason, be up front about it fromthe very start.The last thing you want to do is contradict yourself. “If you said in yourcover letter that you left your job for one reason and then cite a differentreason for leaving during a job interview, that’s going to hurt yourcredibility,” warns Stamford, Connecticut-based executive coach Anne MarieSegal.## Keep it short and sweetYour best approach is to offer a short, concise explanation of why you lefteach job, says Segal. In other words, there’s no need to provide long-windedexplanations, or give a play-by-play of how things went down. And don’t gettoo worked up, especially if things ended badly.DePuy recommends job seekers craft “exit statements”—simple explanations ofwhy you left a job in 25 words or less. For example: “Candidly, when I gotsettled into my position, I realized the work I was doing wasn’t what wasdescribed in the job ad,” or, “I wanted to develop my skills in a new area,and my company didn’t have an opportunity for me to do that.”No matter what you say, never badmouth a former employer, says Andrea Kay,career consultant based in Cincinnati and author of This Is How to Get YourNext Job: An Inside Look at What Employers Really Want.## Focus on the skills you gainedTo help a hiring manager see past your job hopping, steer the conversationtoward your experience and the skills you’ve picked up along the way. Beprepared to describe a key experience for each job, and how that experiencehelps you bring value to an employer, says J.T. O’Donnell, CEO and founder ofonline career coaching platform Work It Daily.For instance: “At [tech startup X], I learned how to scale a business. At[large corporate company Y], I got a chance to manage several projects. And at[medium-sized, established firm Z], I finally got to lead my own team. I’dsay, in sum, these experiences have prepared me for this job.”## Be committedTypically, a prospective employer’s underlying concern when interviewing a jobhopper is loyalty. It’s a valid apprehension—if you’ve left organizationsafter only a short period of employment, what’s going to stop you from doingthat at your next job? Your goal is to alleviate this fear.Segal recommends addressing the topic head-on: “I understand why you’d beconcerned, so I want to express to you that I’m interested in working at acompany where I can stay and grow, and I see this as the perfect opportunityto do that.”## Provide referencesIt’s always beneficial to let other people sing your praises. Offeringreferences from your job-hopping days—whether they be former bosses, old co-workers, or past clients—can show a hiring manager that you were a prizedemployee, regardless of how long (or, in this case, how briefly) you stayed ata company. Great results speak for themselves.## Find the right jobJob hopping can be beneficial in developing your skills and experience, butfinding the right job that will take you to the next level is where thechallenge lies. Could you use some help with that? Join Monster for freetoday. As a member, you can upload up to five versions of your resume—eachtailored to the types of jobs that interest you. Recruiters search Monsterevery day looking to fill top jobs with qualified candidates, just like you.Additionally, you can get job alerts sent directly to your inbox to cut downon time spent looking through ads. Those are two quick and easy ways Monstercan help you reach your desired career destination.