Asking the right questions will show that you:
- have the confidence to ask the questions
- have thought about this job and how you’d be successful
- think strategically
Once I had an entry-level sales candidate call me right before her phone interview. She said, “Hey, do you mind if I ask you a couple questions? I want you to tell me, without worrying about hurting my feelings, what are my weaknesses and what do you perceive are my strengths?”
I’d never had a candidate ask me that! Most candidates think they already know what I think about them, but really, none of us understand how anyone perceives us without first asking questions to find out. So when she asked me that, I was very impressed. So much so that when the hiring manager called me and said he was not sure if he was going to move forward with her, I went to bat for her because I felt so strongly about her. Since she had enough guts to ask me those questions when I interviewed her, she convinced me that she could probably do the job well.
The kinds of questions you should ask in a sales interview
- Tell me a little bit about what you are looking for in a new hire.
- Tell me about the last person you hired.
- Why is the position open?
- What do you think held the other person back from being successful?
- What are the tasks in this job that will especially define success?
- What are the next steps?
- When will I hear from you?
- Is there any reason why you would not consider moving me forward?
- Will anyone else be interviewing me later? If so, will it be a panel interview?
- In a typical day, how many hours do you spend on the road?
- How does the travel program work?
- With your clients, what do you think is the #1 obstacle to success?
- What do you see in the field that stops sales reps from being successful?
- Which product line of yours is your lead line? (i.e. the one that everyone should buy)
- Which product line should they probably not buy?
- What do you like about working here?
- Among the other candidates, how do I rank?
- Do you have any questions for me?
- Do you see how my experience at my past company translates well into this position?
- Do you agree with me that a Bachelor’s degree in Biology is not necessary for this position, that it seems like it’s a sales process that really requires someone that can understand the product well enough, but can also understand the customer and their business process?
When you ask these questions in the interview, you communicate to the hiring manager that you’ll probably ask your customers questions like:
- When can I expect you to order?
- When would you like the product to arrive?
- Is there any reason why we can’t move forward with this deal?
- How many pieces do you want to buy?
- Is there someone else I need to speak to?
- What is the purchasing process?
Get the point: To be successful in your sales interview and get the job, ASK QUESTIONS!
See more here => How to Interview for a Sales Position