Quitting a job is daunting. Letting go of a comfortable job and entering a venture to find a new one is almost nerve-wracking. Yet, forcing yourself on a job you don’t like will get you nowhere. Whatever your reason for leaving a job, it is probably better than feeling stuck.

It's not always possible to communicate to your employer the thoughts that go through your head when you decide to leave a job. However, articulating your reasons is easier said than done.

How you frame your reason for leaving a job says a lot about you during the interview. It shouldn't be a flat-out lie for your potential employer, but it shouldn't be phrased in a way that tarnishes your former employer.

In this article, you will understand the 21 best reasons to give to your current and prospective employers while leaving. Here’s a gist:

  1. Work-life Balance
  2. Relocation
  3. Personal Development
  4. Health Reasons
  5. Career Growth
  6. Company Layoff
  7. Better Opportunities Somewhere Else
  8. Poor Management Culture
  9. Learning and Development
  10. Change in Career Path
  11. Taking care of family
  12. Spouse/Partner's relocation
  13. Maternity and childcare responsibilities
  14. Family Business
  15. Higher Compensation
  16. Cost of Living
  17. Debt Repayment
  18. Investment Opportunity
  19. Workplace policies
  20. Cultural misalignment
  21. Getting Fired

Let’s explore each reason in detail and some sample responses you can use in your upcoming interview.

Personal reasons for leaving a job

1. Work-life Balance

Work life Balance
Having a quality work-life balance is one of the most important aspects of your work-life. In common words, it’s mostly having enough ‘me’ time for yourself. If your current job is all about ‘work’ and has no ‘life,’ you might constantly end up having second thoughts.

Here are some questions to consider:

  • Do you have definite work hours?
  • Are you worried about your work even after work hours?
  • Do you have enough time to practice your hobbies?
  • When was the last time you did something for yourself outside of work?
  • Do you give time to your family and friends?

If you do not find time for yourself at the end of the day, your job is a red flag. A negative work-life balance is one of the top reasons for leaving a job. It is also why most employees lose motivation to work and get exhausted frequently.

Here are some ways you could express the same to your employer.

My time in this company has benefited me, yet, I am now looking for a different work arrangement. I require a more flexible work schedule to take out more time for myself and hence, have decided to move on from this job.

The work pressure in the company does not align with my personal health requirements. Hence, I would like to move on from this job. I am looking for a more liberal work opportunity.

2. Relocation

Living in the same city for a long time could make life very monotonous. The thought of moving to a new city can be scary and exciting at the same time.

In a survey, 64% of respondents considered relocating to find better opportunities.

Some companies offer the opportunity to work from home when an employee is relocating. If your company policies do not allow you to do so, you could consider changing jobs. A new city would offer lots of exciting opportunities and even better ones.

You could frame it like this:

I want to live in a city more suitable for my needs. It’s been a long time since I’ve lived here, and I am considering moving to explore more of what’s out there for me.

I am relocating to a place that is closer to my family. I’ve found some exciting opportunities in X city and would like to move on from my current location.

3. Personal Development

Personal development and well-being should always be your priority. If managing work and your health has become an issue, it could be one of the reasons for leaving a job.

Leaving your job for personal reasons does not need a lot of explanation. You may want to take some time off for yourself and concentrate on yourself only for a while.

You could take up part-time or freelance work rather than full-time. Remember that if you’re not at your best self, you won’t be able to deliver your best performance either.

You could try saying this:

I’ve had a good run in this company. However, some things in my life need my attention right now. Managing work along with it would not be possible for now. Hence, I’d like to move on from this job.”

I want to take some time off for myself and concentrate on my physical and mental health for some time. I would like to start working when I think I can fully devote myself to it and I am at my full potential and not half-hearted.”

4. Health Reasons.

It is okay to consider all the risks involved while considering a job change. But what’s more important is having stable mental and physical health.

No job can make amends for ruined mental or physical health. Hence, you must prioritize your health. Health issues are common reasons many people leave their jobs; most employers understand it.

While providing the reason for leaving, you may or may not dig deep into the details. Here are a few examples of what to say.

I’ve been facing some health issues for quite some time now and would like to take some time off to cater to them.

My doctor has advised me to rest and avoid work stress. Since I won’t be able to deliver work at full capacity now, I would like to take a break from work.

Professional reasons for leaving a job

5. Career Growth

Career Growth
It is exhausting to work in the same position for a long time. Sometimes, it may feel like the structure of your company wouldn’t allow you to grow. It might be difficult to move up the ladder in some companies.

58% of workers claimed they do not see a future in their companies because of the absence of career development.

With time, you'd want to pursue new opportunities that bring greater autonomy and innovation. A stagnant career graph has no room for development. Hence, career growth becomes one of the top reasons for considering a job change.

The above reason could be more appropriately expressed as:

The role I was hired for was suited to my needs at the time, but I'm looking for new opportunities right now. I would like to explore more about what’s best suited for me and test my potential along the way.

I feel like my abilities for the current role have developed significantly, and I want to work in a more challenging environment to further grow in my career.

6. Company Layoff

61% of adults between 18-34 have layoff anxiety.

When companies face economic downturns or have lost clients, they tend to downsize. Layoffs expose the company's dark side, and employees can attest to the excruciating stress they face at that time.

Layoffs could also have a negative impact on employees’ morale and productivity. So, if your company is going through a layoff cycle, you might want to reconsider your future in the company.

If your job security is being threatened, it is best to look for better options or explore other options available.

A better way to say it would be:

I've learned a lot from my experience here. However, right now, the company's future goals and my current goals don't match. It's time to leave because I don't see a future that aligns with my interest.

I am grateful to the company for everything I’ve learned. However, the recent changes do not align with the company's future goals. I think I would thrive better with other accommodations. Hence I would like to move on.

7. Better Opportunities Somewhere Else

If you’re being offered a better opportunity that offers a higher position and better pay, it’s a good enough reason to change jobs.

However, it is important to research your future company based on its work culture, employee reviews and ratings, and reward systems. Better pay does not always mean a better work environment.

Being appreciated at work counts more than just receiving a salary at the end of the month. Appreciation can be done in the form of perks and benefits too. Read how companies like Apple, Zappos and Best Buy keep their employees happy: 7 Companies with Best Employee Perks.

Make sure not to compromise on ‘culture-fit’ as it is one of the most influential factors in job satisfaction.

Express your thoughts better:

I've always sought new challenges, and regular workdays don't provide that for me. I'm looking for a job that will allow me to take on more risks while prioritizing my financial well-being.

After working for X years, I feel like taking on new challenges and exploring more on what life has to offer and how I can bring out my full potential in another role.

8. Poor Management Culture

Poor Management Culture
Toxic management cultures have a negative impact on employees’ morale. Poor manager-peer relationships are among the most common reasons employees leave their jobs.

A survey by Hays concluded that 43% of employees consider corporate work culture the main reason for a job change.

Poor management may include arrogant behavior or an inability to handle feedback. Factors like these demotivate employees and affect productivity.

If you feel like your abilities or skills are being questioned constantly by your upper management, consider leaving. Seek a company that values manager-employee relationships more and encourages feedback exchange.

A more appropriate way to say it:

I am not well suited to the culture in this company. I should look for a work environment that is a better fit for me.

The culture of this organization is very different from my set requirements. I’m looking for a company where I fit in comfortably and be able to grow.

9. Learning and Development

Have you been performing the same tasks since the day you joined? When was the last time you learned a new skill at work?

The absence of learning and development at work can leave you feeling uninspired. Besides, it also hampers your professional growth.

A company that values its employees ensures that enough learning and development is going on. There should be enough skill exchange and development programs to motivate and engage employees.

You could say:

The responsibilities of my current role have surpassed their saturation point. I would like to try out more challenging opportunities and see where they could take me. I am willing to take up a job with more skill development.

I want to take up some new skills and courses to learn on my plate. I am trying to escalate my career growth, and the current position does not offer me the required development opportunities.

10. Change in career path

Many of us realize that our current work does not excite us enough. This could make us think if we’re in the right direction. Career goals are allowed to change at any point in time.

Some companies cater to changes like these. However, not all companies can do so. If you want to explore a new career direction, quitting your job could be a good option.

The above reason could be explained like this:

Lately, I’ve been having second thoughts about the career I’m into right now. I want to try something new and step out of my comfort zone. Hence, it would be best for me to move on from my current job.

I am planning to take a course that does not align with my current role. I have realized I am more interested in X and would like to build a career out of it.

Family reasons for leaving a job

11. Taking care of family

There could be a lot of family reasons for you to consider a job change. If your family grows, you might need higher pay or want to move somewhere closer to your family.

You might often have to look after a family member for longer than your work allows. In a situation like this, consider a job that offers more flexibility in your schedule.

It’s not necessary to go into detail about your reason. Instead, keep it brief.

I have decided to dedicate more time to my family and would like to look for a working arrangement that offers more flexibility.

My family has recently come up with some issues which need to be addressed. My current position does not offer enough flexibility to address those issues.

I have decided to take some time off after my maternity leave. Parenting seems like a full-time job, and I want to dedicate all my time to it.

12. Spouse/Partner's relocation

Deciding to leave a job because your spouse or partner is moving for their job is about putting family first. If the new job requires a move to a different place, staying in your current job might be tough.

Especially if you want to be close to your partner to support them and keep your family strong, here are a few things you could say during your resignation.

I have decided to make a move due to my spouse's recent job relocation. I value family commitments and want to be closer to supporting my partner in this new chapter of our lives.”

In light of my spouse's recent job relocation, I have carefully considered the impact on our family dynamics and have decided to make the necessary move to be closer to and support my partner in this new chapter of our lives.”

I have recently faced a significant change in my personal life as my spouse has secured a job in a different location. Family commitments are paramount to me, and I have decided to make a move to be closer to my partner.”

13. Maternity and childcare responsibilities

In 2020, almost one-third of the female workforce in the United States consisted of working mothers. (McKinsey data)

It is very common to see working mothers quit their jobs to balance childcare duties. The job of parenting cannot be compromised with work and should be done upto its potential.

If you’re a working mother wanting to invest more time into childcare, here are some ideas for how to draft your resignation.

I find myself at a juncture where balancing work and childcare responsibilities has become challenging. I am seeking a job that provides more flexibility in my schedule to manage better and be present for my young children.”

I have decided to take some time off after my maternity leave. Parenting seems like a full-time job, and I want to dedicate all my time to it.”

Before quitting your job, consult HR on maternity allowances and if there are other options available where you could return to work after a period of time.

14. Family Business

Transitioning from your current job to a family business involves a significant shift. Picture it as a strategic move akin to aligning your professional path with your family's legacy.

This decision signifies a departure from a solo professional journey to collaborating with kin. The family business becomes more than a workplace; it transforms into a collective effort to build on a shared history and contribute to a lasting legacy.

If you’re not sure how to convey this to your current employer, here’s some help:

A unique family opportunity has presented itself, and I am considering joining or taking over our family business. This decision aligns with my desire to contribute to the family legacy and be actively involved in the success of our business.”

I'm writing to inform you of my resignation, as I've chosen to embark on a new professional journey within my family's business. This decision is rooted in my commitment to our family legacy. I appreciate the opportunities for growth and development during my tenure here."

Financial reasons for leaving a job

15. Higher Compensation

Sometimes, a better-paying job opportunity offers increased financial rewards for your skills and expertise. Leaving for a role with higher compensation is a strategic move to enhance your financial well-being.

I've accepted a position that aligns with my career goals and provides a more competitive compensation package. I appreciate the opportunities here and have enjoyed contributing to the team."

16. Cost of Living

Relocating to an area with a lower cost of living can significantly improve your financial situation. This move allows you to stretch your income further, enhancing your overall financial stability.

Due to personal considerations, I'll be relocating to an area with a lower cost of living. This decision is driven by a desire to enhance my financial stability. I value the experiences gained here and appreciate the support."

17. Debt Repayment

Leaving a job to focus on repaying debts or financial obligations demonstrates a commitment to achieving financial freedom. It allows for a dedicated focus on addressing financial challenges.

In order to address significant financial commitments, I've decided to focus on debt repayment. I've appreciated my time here and am grateful for the opportunities provided."

18. Investment Opportunity

Pursuing investment opportunities or financial ventures outside of your current employment can be a strategic move to build wealth and explore new financial avenues.

I've decided to pursue a unique investment opportunity that aligns with my financial goals. I value the experiences gained at this company and look forward to this new chapter in my financial journey."

More reasons

19. Workplace policies

Do your current job policies allow you to work from home or take enough paid leaves?

Many companies do not offer flexible work hours and enough personal leave. This could be a problem for you if the work-life balance is a priority for you.

70% of HR managers stated that the absence of flexible work hours was one of the main reasons for quitting employees.

If your needs are not met with the current workplace policies, move to a company that provides a better employee experience.

This could be expressed as:

The company's current policies are not in line with my requirements. I would like more flexibility in my work routine, so it would be best for me to move from this company.

The recent change in company policies does not align with my needs. My family and health require me to take more leaves and work from home sometimes.

20. Cultural misalignment

If you believe that your organization’s culture does not align with your personal values, beliefs, and work style, it qualifies as a reason to quit your job. Cultural misalignment can lead to a sense of discomfort, frustration, or a feeling that the workplace environment is not conducive to personal and professional well-being.

Explain that you leave the job due to a misalignment with the company's culture. Frame it as a quest for a workplace where your values align more closely.

While cultural fit is important, don't make it the sole reason for leaving. Connect it to broader professional and personal growth objectives.

Here are a few things to say:

After thoughtful consideration, I've decided to resign from my role. My decision is rooted in recognizing the importance of cultural alignment for professional satisfaction. I value the opportunities provided here and see this move as a step toward finding an environment that better complements my work style and values. I'm grateful for the experiences gained and the support received."

I appreciate the experiences and growth here. Recognizing the importance of cultural fit for my professional journey, I seek an environment aligned with my values. Grateful for the opportunities, I look forward to the next chapter in my career."

21. Getting Fired

Getting Fired
Twitter, led by Elon Must, fired more than 90% of its staff in India in 2022. Most of the people who were fired were talented engineers and product employees who worked on a global scale.

Getting fired is OKAY.

Many people get fired; some choose to talk about it, while others don’t. The best way to deal with it is, to be honest about it.

There are several reasons why people get fired. You might’ve gotten fired because you had a beef with your manager, the expectations were too high, or the company simply has a bad culture. If this is not the case, you can still make up for your mistakes and let your future employer know how you’ve improved and what you have to present.

Avoid lying about why you got fired in the interview. There are always better ways to say things. Try out something like the following.

The expectations of the job position did not match my skill set. I realize now that there should have been clearer communication between my reporting manager and me. I now ask for feedback regularly so that the work standard is maintained.

During that particular time, I was going through some personal problems, and I let them affect my professional life. The time off has been beneficial for taking some time for me. I am not ready for new challenges and to fully devote myself.

How to explain your reasons for leaving a job?

When answering the question "Why are you leaving your job?" in a job interview, keep these tips in mind:

Be truthful

Always respond honestly to ensure you find the right fit for your career. Being truthful during an interview is the best way to deal with your answers.

Stay positive

Avoid negativity about your current job or employer. Instead, keep your comments neutral or tactful. Highlight a couple of positive aspects of your current role, if possible.

Focus on the future

Emphasize what you look forward to in your next role rather than dwelling on the past. Talk about the exciting opportunities and specific aspects you're eager to work on in your new position.

Point out professional growth.

Mention your desire for professional development and how the new position aligns with your career goals. This demonstrates that you're proactive and forward-thinking.

High company culture fit

Explain how you researched the company culture and values of the prospective employer and how they align better with your own. Let them know how they have a more appealing and harmonious environment for you to work in.

Do’s and Dont’s while answering, “Reason for leaving a job?”


  1. Be Candid but Tactful: Share genuine reasons for leaving without going into unnecessary details. You can be honest without being overly critical.
  2. Emphasize Learning Opportunities: Discuss your thirst for new challenges and learning experiences. Employers appreciate candidates who seek growth.
  3. Connect with Career Goals: Explain how the new opportunity aligns with your long-term career goals, signaling a proactive approach to your professional journey.
  4. Highlight Positive Aspects: If your current or previous job has positive aspects, acknowledge them. It shows you appreciate what you've gained.
  5. Practice Storytelling: Practice framing your reasons as a cohesive narrative. Storytelling can make your response more engaging and memorable.


  1. Avoid Blaming Others: Steer clear of blaming colleagues, supervisors, or the company for your decision. Take ownership of your choices.
  2. Limit Personal Details: While mentioning personal reasons is okay, avoid sharing overly personal details. Keep it professional and relevant to your career.
  3. Balance Critique with Positivity: If discussing challenges, balance critique with positive outcomes or lessons learned. It shows resilience and a solution-oriented mindset.
  4. Steer Clear of Money Talk: While finances might be a factor, don't make it the primary focus. Keep the conversation centered around your career and professional goals.
  5. Don't Rush the Response: Take your time to answer thoughtfully. Avoid rushing your response, as it might be insincere or unprepared.

Summing Up

At this point, you should figure out why you want to leave your job and what the best reason is suited for you. When talking to your supervisor about it, be honest, but don’t be too honest. There’s always a better way to say things. While you’re at it, start dropping your job application in various openings.

Also, keep in mind never to bad-mouth a company. Criticizing your previous company before your potential employer does not deliver a very good impression.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. How do I leave my job politely?

Make sure not to burn any bridges while leaving your job. Go through the employee resignation policies of your company and follow the required notice period. Discuss with your boss before sending the resignation letter and offer help with the transition.

2. What should I know when I’ve decided to quit?

Once you’ve decided to quit, you should be aware of the proper notice period required by the company. You should also write a respectable resignation letter and thank your employer for the opportunities presented to you. Go through a few letters of resignation before writing one.

Some companies also offer unemployment benefits. Talk to your HR about them. Lastly, don’t forget to hand over valuable documents and assets you’ve acquired.

3. How do I answer interview questions about leaving my job?

While answering interview questions about leaving your job, ensure you are brief and honest. Do not overexplain yourself or give out additional information. You should also avoid bad-mouthing your previous employer, which could prove counterproductive.

4. What not to say while leaving a job?

While leaving your job, avoid using words like ‘quitting’ or ‘leaving,’ as that could imply that you’re putting the company at fault. Say you’ve found a better opportunity or are taking some time off. Don’t apologize or give away too much with words.

5. Should I quit my job if I’m unhappy?

If you constantly feel mentally and physically exhausted while at your job, you should consider leaving. However, having one bad day at work is not enough to quit. There could be a lot of reasons for your unhappiness, and your job might not be one of them.

This article has been written by Pansy Thakuria. She works as a Content Marketing Specialist at Vantage Lens. Her areas of interest include marketing, mental well-being, travel, and digital tech. When she’s not writing, she’s usually planning trips to remote locations and stalking animals on social media.