Fired or let go from your last job? Use it to your advantage.
Getting let go from a job can really be detrimental when interviewing for jobs, if not handled properly. Here is what I suggest:
Use the fact that you are not working to your advantage. But first, you must make sure that you are prepared with some good references. Make sure that you talk to a couple people that worked with you at the company you were let go from, and be 100% sure they are willing to give you an off the record reference. They cannot say something like “It’s company policy that I am not allowed to say anything other than Joe worked here”. That is a major red flag. If they are not willing to provide some good information about why an employer should hire you, then do NOT use them on your reference list. If you are not sure how the reference will handle a reference call, have a recruiter that you are working with call the reference to see what they say first, before providing this reference to a hiring company.
Once you have your references nailed down, you are ready to handle the question of “why were you let go?” Your response should go something like this: “Mr. Employer, unlike other candidates you’re talking to that may be presently employed, my life is an open book. I am not working so feel free to talk to my references at my last job. Here they are. They will tell you about my performance there, my work ethic, and whatever else you want to know. The candidate that is currently working cannot be checked out in their current job or run the risk of losing that job. There could be all kinds of hidden secrets and certainly there are unknowns. However in my case, I am totally open and free to allow you to check me out. So again, here are names and phone numbers of people that will vouch for me.”
This approach will normally move the interviewing to the next question.