When Allen Salikof got into the recruiting business 21 years ago, companies wouldn't even interview a candidate whose résumé smelled of job hopping. That attitude has changed dramatically. "In some industries, you have to explain why you stayed at a place for six years," says Salikof, now CEO of Management Recruiters International, one of the nation's largest recruiting firms. If you're a fruit fly, the key to packaging your job history is to articulate why you left. Here is Salikof's list of Raid-proof explanations.
I followed the best and the brightest. Companies want people who bring varied experience to the table. For that reason alone, job hopping makes you more marketable.
I followed the money. No one will argue with a move that gave you a salary boost - - as long as money isn't the only reason why you left.
I followed the promotion. A promotion shows both that you're valued and that you're managing your career aggressively.
I followed my spouse. Employers are typically understanding of this type of move. But they also want to know that your career matters too.
Coordinates: Allen Salikof, firstname.lastname@example.org
A version of this article appeared in the November 1998 issue of Fast Company magazine.