I quit my job because my manager (CEO) was extremely toxic. I wasn’t the only one who quit for that reason either. What’s the best professional response for “I see there’s a gap in your resume. Why did you leave your last role?”

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Firstly, you're not required to disclose your reason for leaving (they want to know if you were fired with cause). Therefore, you can simply respond with whatever vague version of "it wasn't a good long term for for me" or "I wasn't able to grow in that environment" or whatever you wish.

Pro tip: use the question and your answer to your advantage in an interview. If the new place is very collaborative, for example, say "it wasn't a good for for my working style, because I function best in a more teamwork and collaboration environment. Am I correct that this role/team fits that description?"

Adjust accordingly for whatever fits you and the interview. I do this with basically all questions, turning them around to focus on the new potential gig instead of focusing on prior work.

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