This question could be jarring if you receive it in an already stressful interview. Why ask this question Interviewers could be testing you to see how you respond. Are you defensive Do you get angry Or do you respond with poise and politeness In most jobs, how you interact with difficult people can be critical, so the hiring manager could be trying to test your people skills.
Points to Emphasize
If you get this type of question, above all, be sure to stay calm and stay positive.
Mistakes You Should Avoid
Here are a few suggestions to help you ace this question
Here is one response that answers the question without seeming defensive or evasive.
When I took my last job, I had just finished graduate school in my field and was focused on gaining skills and promoting my long-term career growth in the industry. Thus, I was drawn to XYZ position because it gave first-year employees the opportunity to take a hands-on role in the company and work on complex projects from day one. Though I had to take a pay cut at the time, the experience was invaluable in building my skillset and allowing me to take on greater responsibilities and move to a more advanced position.
Though this question can catch applicants off guard, if you answer it well, you can come out of the interview looking stronger and more appealing as a candidate.