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Six Tips To Succeed In A Sales Interview


Six Tips To Succeed In A Sales Interview

So, you’ve done the hard work and managed to secure an interview for a sales job. Your next port of call is to prepare and make sure that it’s you who lands the role over the other potential candidates. As the old phrase goes, by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.

A sales interview is slightly different than other standard office job interview. This is because your success is likely to be determined by what you can show the interviewer in relation to previous targets, goals, results and achievements.

However, don’t let this put you off. Here at Ageas 50 Careers we have given you six top tips to improve your chances of hearing the words “your hired”. So, let’s take a closer look.

1.   Detail your previous track record

As it’s a sales interview, certain questions will inevitably relate to your past achievements in similar roles. Therefore, spend time preparing a handful of examples so that you have these ready to use in the interview.

If you can show your prospective employer that you reached X amount of sales in a certain timeframe, or that you managed to secure a big deal that was instigated by you, it’s more likely that they will pay attention to you.

Detail your achievements and any sales that you secured which were challenging, as this will show your determination and level of skill in the negotiating process.

2.   Understand the questions they may ask

Again, as it’s a sales interview there are some questions you will be asked that are more specific for a sales vacancy. So, make sure you are comfortable with answering these questions if they should arise.

You could be asked about the following:

  • Key sales practices, such as handling objections, hitting targets and closing the sale
  • Opinions on the value of customer service and relationship building – both crucial areas when it comes to sales
  • Questions based on your own ability with regards to persuasion, negotiation and presentation skills
  • The sales that you are most proud of and your best achievements to date
  • Any challenges that you have faced and how you handled them
  • What to do during difficult sales pitches and agreements with prospective clients/customers

Have an answer ready for each of these areas and prepare for any other questions that are more tailored for the role you are trying to secure.

3.   Create a hypothetical sales plan or pitch

In order to really show off your skills, you could go to the interview with an example of how you would prepare a sales plan or pitch.

This could include areas such as how you will bring in new custom and get up to speed with their existing processes and clients. In doing so, you will show the interviewer that you can quickly adapt to new settings and that you are willing to work hard to achieve results.

It’s also a great way to stand out from the crowd and look more focused and dedicated than the other interviewees.

4.   Show them your existing contacts

A fundamental part of the sales role is to build long-lasting and successful relationships. These relationships are the key to building and generating company revenue and profits.

You don’t necessarily need to pass on these contacts, but instead show them your capabilities and how many you have built up in your previous positions.

Again, this is another tactic that is likely to put you in a better light, compared to other interviewees.

5.   Convey your personality

Don’t forget that the interview won’t solely be about your ability to sell, you also need to let your personality shine through.

You might have the best sales record in your region, but if the company don’t feel as though you would fit in with their culture or be able to work successfully with other members of staff, they could turn you down.

Therefore, it’s important to convey your personality during the interview and especially during the questions that don’t strictly apply to sales.

Be yourself and try to convey your passions and personality so that the interviewer understands a bit more about you as a person.

6.   Close the interview just like the sale

An experienced salesperson will know how to close the sale and this tactic can be used during your interview too.

In this situation, instead of securing the deal, you are trying to secure the job and sell your strengths. Before you leave, make sure you ask about the next steps so you can uncover any objections and address them while you are still in the interview.

Remember that this is the perfect opportunity to ask them any questions you have about the role, the work environment, or any other areas you are interested in.

Seal the deal

Preparation is the key in getting the right result in any interview. If you are prepared, you will have the confidence to be able to walk into the room, detail your sales techniques, tactics and achievements, and successfully land the job you want.

By gaining an understanding of what you are likely to be asked and how you will react to each question you won’t allow for any slip-ups. With this in mind, you will be more likely to succeed. Best of luck in your interview!

This post was written by Ageas 50 Careers who offer specialist career opportunities in sales and service, claims handling and other disciplines.

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