Explaining a Very Short-Term Job

Veronica writes:
After a month of working in what I thought was my dream job I can honestly say this is the biggest mistake of my life. My dream job is a nightmare. Just last Friday I asked a question about why were doing something a certain way and the boss exploded! He stormed out of the room came back in pointed his finger in my face and told me I was stupid that he never wanted to hire me in the first place and that he would find some way to get me fired. I was shocked and mortified and now I am just disappointed that I didn’t listen to my gut. (I had two interviews and talked to a few staff when a red flag went up. The employees seemed miserable but I was told they had just finished working all week on a grueling proposal.)

The fact of the matter is I took this job to get my foot in the door of my field and get experience but that is far from what I am getting.

I am beginning my job hunt again and I don’t know how to address this on my resume or in interviews.

The Career Doctor responds:
It’s pretty simple really. In interviews you can say there turned out to be a poor cultural fit and even though you tried to carefully vet the position before taking the job the employees were not candid with you.

Since you have been there only a month I’d probably recommend leaving it off your resume. That IS a tad bit risky these days (because of background checks) and you WILL have to explain why you’re leaving/unemployed but it would be riskier to have a 1-month job on your resume. Of course if it takes you a long time to land a new job you’ll have a different situation. If at all possible get out of that toxic environment ASAP (it’s clear you probably won’t get a good reference from the boss) even if you have to take a temp job while you search.

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