In the world of sales, you don’t simply wake up in the morning and hire someone to start working without assessing the capability of that specific individual because at the end of the day as an employer you want to see productivity and good results, this is achieved from nothing other than capacity, and how do you assess someone’s capacity? Of course, it’s through interviews.
Oh!! Wow, what an interesting topic to discuss with you?? INTERVIEWS
Every day every time, we hear people say I am going for an interview, and of course, if you have not had a chance to do one before you could actually be asking yourself, what an interview is, and what do they do if they go there? what is asked in an interview? Basically, you could be thinking about this whole thing so-called an interview.
So today we are going to discuss and understand the meaning of the word Interview.
First of all, what do you think an interview is???
An interview is a formal meeting in which one or more persons question, consult or evaluate another person. Alternatively, an interview is a meeting or a conversation in which a writer or reporter asks questions of one or more persons from whom material is sought for a newspaper story or television broadcast.
The purpose of an interview is to unfold to the employer what you can do for the company and gives it an opportunity to assess whether your qualifications and career ambitions align with the position.
Now that we very well understand what an interview means, let’s look at interview questions that sales representatives are usually asked.
1. Tell me about yourself!
This is a very common question that is usually asked during interviews and this is intended to let the interviewee introduce himself or herself to the interviewers; by his or her names, qualifications, former job and the previous position. Additionally in the field of sales, it gives the interviewers a hint and shows them that the interviewee can be able to introduce him or herself to the customers very well even if it’s on the first initial contact.
2. Why did you leave your former job?
Usually, the interviewers intend to find out why the candidate left his former job, it could be that he or she was terminated and if so for what reasons or whether the candidate is in for career growth and development other than money and other benefits.
3. How would you meet your target market?
This question is asked to assess the ability of the candidate to keep up to date with the target market and how the candidate will be able to find and identify the target clients out of the huge market out there and which means he or she will use to identify the potential clients.
4. Narrate to me, how you would make a business sales pitch?
With this question, you are basically asking the candidate to explain to you how he or she can convince a customer from being a prospect to a buying customer and bring business on board. Here the candidate is expected to portray all his social and interaction skills because these skills are essential in pitching a business sale.
5. Which questions would you prefer to ask your prospects?
This question is basically meant to assess what the sale representative would ask target clients in trying to make a sales pitch, here a candidate is at least expected to ask more questions about the client’s life wants and needs other than pitching, this will help the candidate to understand the client’s needs and wants and also find out whether his or her product would be of help to the client.
6. How helpful is social media in the selling process?
This is done to access the ability of the candidate to use social media to generate sales, whether he or she can be able to use social media to convince prospects and turn them into buying customers.
7. If you were hired for this position, what would you do in your first month?
This question is asked to access whether the candidate has some knowledge about the job duties and how he would execute them, additionally to find out whether this specific person has some sort of work plan in his or her head.
8. Why do you think the sales representative position is the right position for you?
This question intends to scoop out the skills of the candidate with respect to the sales position which he or she applied for. The candidate is expected to demonstrate his skills in sales and how he has been acquiring business from the target market if at all he was doing the same job.
9. Why did you choose to apply to (mention name of the company) for the sales position?
Well, here the candidate is expected to demonstrate his knowledge about the company, this shows how much research the candidate has done before coming for the interview.
10. Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
This question helps the interviewers to know the time period they are likely to have this new sales representative. Whether you will be with the person for a short period of time or for a long period of time, check on their CV and see how often they have always changed jobs, additionally, it helps to know whether the candidate is in for a career goal or simply money.
11. What do you think are characteristics of great salesmen and women? (people)
This question helps to assess the candidate’s knowledge about the job, it also shows to the interviewers that the candidate has done this job before and he is well informed about it. This question hunts for the alignment between the candidate’s beliefs and your beliefs.
12. How would you handle a difficult prospect who is not willing to work with us (mention the name of the company)?
Here you are basically assessing the candidate’s ability to generate new prospects and bring such difficult clients on board to give you business. Here the interviewee must be able to demonstrate his or her skills in dealing with such clients until they are convinced that you are the best company to work with.
13. Tell me about the recent sales you made, how did it go?
This is intended to give actual evidence and factual truth of what the candidate has actually been doing and how he or she has been doing it.
14. Have you ever been tasked with an aggressive sales target, how did you go about it?
This is meant to understand the candidate’s ability to deal with difficult goals, whether he or she will simply give up or keep pushing until they achieve the set goal. It helps you to know whether the candidate would be able to work under pressure especially during rapid times of organizational growth.
15. Describe a time to gave out products to a client and gave you negative feedback about your products, how did you feel about it and how did you deal with the client?
This helps to know how a candidate would deal with such times because in the field of sales we expect this to happen over and over again. A candidate is expected to portray his knowledge in dealing with such happenings so that the client is handled very well and kept around to continue supporting the business.
16. Talk about the recent opportunity you lost and why?
In life we know that we meet setbacks however this does stop us from moving on and do better in other areas or even improve where we failed, this question helps you to access whether the sales representative in question is willing to speak frankly about setbacks, instead of sugar-coating the truth.
17. Fully, describe for me the sales process?
This question helps you access whether the candidate really understands his job description, here the candidate is expected to talk about the entire sales process from prospecting and identifying the client until the delivery of the product or service.
18. How easily would you establish trust with your client?
Trust building is an important aspect, with this question the candidate is expected to show what he or she has to do to gain trust from the customer because there is no customer who can allow giving you business without trusting your products or services first.
19. How did you prepare for this interview?
This gives you an insight into whether the candidate prepared for the interview or not and how serious he or she is taking the job. If the candidate has not adequately prepared probably they are giving vague answers and that shows that they are taking the job lightly.
20. If you become financially stable now, how would you spend your day?
This question intends to analyze the strategic thinking of a candidate and how they would keep the financial flows. However, any answer would be right because different people have different preferences and goals.
21. How are you going to help us (mention the name of the company) deal with the competition?
This question is intended to assess the ability of the candidate to deal with the competition, the creativity and innovativeness that the candidate can bring on board to defeat the existing competition so that your organization keeps on top of its competitors.
22. What were your expectations?
The candidate here is required to talk about what he or she expected to get from the interview. This rotates around so many aspects including taking the offer home or not, which questions I am going to be asked, which people I am going to meet and so many other things.
In conclusion, questions to ask new sales representatives appearing to the company for the first time are so many; you just have to understand the position very well, job description and the job duties so that you keep within the same bracket.
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