7 months ago
February 21, 2017

Sales Job Interview Questions You Need to Be Ready For‏

When you land a sales job interview with a company you’d love to work for, you want to make sure that you get everything right.

Claire McConnachie

sales job interviewWhen you land a sales job interview with a company you’d love to work for, you want to make sure that you get everything right. Your answers to questions during a sales job interview are one of the factors most firmly in your control, along with your personal appearance and general behavior during the interview. The best way to make sure you hit the right notes is preparing for tough questions like these.

Why are you looking to leave your current position?

This question is asked in almost every sales job interview, and while it sounds easy, your answer can reveal much more than you intended. Hinting at disagreements with your manager is dangerous, and problems with compensation should not be introduced during the first interview. The best way to turn this one to your advantage is to talk about why you want to work for this company, instead of why you don’t want to work for the company you’re at now.

How do you think your previous experience makes you a match to this position?

In a sales job interview, you need to come prepared for specifics, and this is particularly applicable to this interview question. It might help you to break down the requirements and desired skills in the job description by listing your attributes, experiences, and qualifications for each before going into the interview. With this question, focus on the four or five points that are likely to be the most important to the interviewer; these are usually listed first in the description.

What are your goals?

This question is tricky, because it could be asked as above, or modified to prompt you towards your career goals, personal goals, short term goals, or other goals. If the interviewer is clearly asking for certain goals, strictly limit your answer to that arena. Otherwise, tell the interviewer about your overall career goals and sales goals, and include goals for both the short and long term, giving a time period for each. This helps the interviewer understand your ambition, and also shows that you think ahead.

What is the biggest sales challenge you faced, and how did you cope?

While you may have faced many challenges that fit the description of “big”, you want to be sure to pick the right one: The one that you handled best. You should practice answering this question ahead of the sales job interview so that your response sounds natural, logical, and most importantly, honest. It’s also important to avoid painting others involved in your challenge scenario in a negative light.

Do you have any questions for me?

Just when you thought your sales job interview was over, the hiring manager pulls one last question out of his or her sleeve. This question is critical, because if you don’t have any questions yourself, you could be perceived as uninterested, bored, or just not keeping up with the company. Think of at least five questions before the sales job interview that you can ask that are not related to compensation, time off, or work hours. By having five questions, you can ensure that even if some of your questions are answered during the sales job interview, you still have a chip or two left to show you’re still playing the game.

Even if you answer every question in a sales job interview on the mark, don’t be disappointed if you are not selected for the position. Many factors go into a hiring decision, and a job seeker’s responses during an interview are only one facet of the process. Think of each sales job interview as practice preparing you for the one that really counts, just like you do with your sales pitch.

Claire McConnachie

Claire is a Western University graduate with a background in recruiting, sales and customer service. As a Recruitment Consultant, her goals are to place the best people in the right roles resulting in satisfaction for both the candidate and client.