As we close out the year, this is a very busy time for sales hiring managers. Not only are they working with their teams to ensure that revenue goals are exceeded, they are usually hiring salespeople for next year. To help you find the best sales people for your company, we’ll discover the best questions to as a sales candidate during the hiring process.
A few months ago I wrote about how to ensure you hire the right salespeople and avoid hiring mistakes.
Here I would like to share some effective questions to ask sales candidates during the interview process. These questions come from a few different sources. I’ve taken some training classes on interview techniques over the years, however, most of the questions I ask come from my experiences as a sales candidate getting asked challenging and thoughtful questions.
Please keep in mind when reviewing the questions below: These questions are part of your subjective evaluation of a sales candidate. If you would like to objectively evaluate your candidates you should consider using a sales assessment that provides objective scores and data and measures sales competencies, sales DNA and a candidate’s desire and motivation to sell. The assessments we use with our clients have been used by over 11,000 companies over the past 25 years and have a 95% success rate. They measure over 20 sales competencies and also provide guidance on what types of interview questions to ask based on the data in the assessment report.
Below are some of the questions or topics I look to cover during my interviews as a sales manager. The best questions to ask a sales candidate should spark follow up conversations that dig deeper, learn more and foster informative interviews.
· Tell me about one of your top professional achievements.
· How do you define success?
· Tell me about your worst sales call or meeting and what did you learn from it?
· Tell me about one of your best client relationships that you have developed either in your current sales role or a recent role.
· At your current company or a recent company, who has been your strongest internal business partner? (someone that supports your efforts or someone who helps you manage your territory, etc). Why is this relationship so strong, what are some of the things the two of you have done to foster such a strong relationship?
· Tell me about a difficult internal situation that you had to navigate through. What was the outcome? And what did you learn from it?
· What is the most important attribute or characteristic that a salesperson needs to be successful?
· Tell me about one of your mentors. Why is he/she a mentor of yours?