Sales job interview tactics
In the sales job market today, employers want to recruit exceptional employees who can represent their company to clients and prospects in a professional and enthusiastic manner, and close business.
Companies may have many interviewing tactics to find the optimal candidate, but most of what they perceive can be controlled by you during the interview.
You need to explain and convince your interviewer why you are the best person for this sales job, which is why it is important to separate yourself from the candidate ‘pack’, and make a enduring impact on your interviewer.
Standing out from the other candidates is largely about doing and saying the right things during the interview.
1 Take your time Make a conscious effort not to rush when you first walk into the interview.
Pause at the door to make sure the interviewer is ready before you walk in.
Take a few moments to look around and prepare yourself when you enter the interview. After the initial greeting, take your time when settling yourself into the chair. By taking things at a calm and measured pace, you will present a more professional and confident image.
2 Establish rapport It is clearly important to establish rapport with the person interviewing you. However, do not try too hard to do this, as this may discourage the interviewer.
Your primary task in a job interview is to clearly demonstrate that you have the skills and experience that match the job requirements.
If you concentrate on achieving this goal in an honest, enthusiastic and professional manner, rapport will usually naturally occur.
3 Be yourself Be prepared to let your natural personality shine through in the interview.
Interviewers generally need to gain a general sense of who you really are. Paradoxically, candidates often do themselves more harm than good when they try to present themselves as the “ideal candidate”, which can often be identified by experienced interviewers.
4 Be concise Keep your answers to interview questions as brief as possible.
Do not feel compelled to speak and provide additional information during any silence that follows your answer.
Let the silence work for you, allowing the interviewer time to understand your response.
Look for visual clues in the interviewer, such as nodding of the head to agree, or tilting the head on one side if they are not convinced by an answer you have provided.
5 Prepare a Sales Brag Book A sales brag book will make you stand out during an interview.
By preparing a document that shows a verified statement of achievements relevant to this particular sales opportunity, this information will make you stand out above the other candidates and facilitate the interview conversation being about you and your achievements.
6 Deliver a proactive suggestion Another way to differentiate you from the other candidates is to make the interviewer an offer. This could be to spend a day in the field, build a presentation on how the company could sell more products or services, or prepare a 30-60-90 day induction plan.
If you take the initiative in this way, the interviewer will either accept your proposal or politely reject; either way, you have separated yourself from the other candidates.
7 Close the interview When the interview is completed, you need to close the interviewer for the next step. For example, you could ask your interviewer “do you have any hesitations about me progressing to the next stage?” If the interviewer says yes, you need to reveal and address the objections.
If the interviewer says no, you could ask the interviewer to schedule the next meeting.
8 Leave behind a sales aid Prepare a sales aid that you can leave with the interviewer(s) following the interview.
This will enhance your chances of being hired.
The sales aid could be your “Sales Brag Book”, a list of skills and attributes that match the job requirements, or a 30-60-90 day induction plan.
The interviewer will be more likely to think of you after the interview, and again you will stand apart from the other candidates.