There are a lot of techniques out there for interviewing and you should use whatever suits your organization and personality best. However, here are some interview questions you can ask that address common topics in ways your candidate won’t have a canned response for.
1. How Do You Know An Idea Isn’t Working?
Are the candidate’s decisions based on data? Or do they go with their gut? This question will give you insight into how a candidate tracks and evaluates their individual efforts, which can be critical in a hands-off management environment.
2. What Do You Dislike Most About Sales?
This is an opportunity for candidates to be candid, and for you to ensure you’re not putting someone in a role they’re going to hate. It’s also an indicator of potential weakness, since people are typically less dedicated or diligent about things they don’t enjoy.
3. What’s Your Goal For The 1st Year?
Realistic confidence is what you’re looking for. Hitting quota and fitting in are realistic goals, but strong candidates will want to overachieve and already have their next step in mind.
4. Beyond Revenue, How Did You Add Value to Your Last Organization?
Your sales team may be focused on driving revenue, but they’re still people that will impact their coworkers and your organization. If they can offer something above and beyond their quota number you want to factor that into your evaluation.
5. How Do You Find New Prospects?
This is particularly important if prospecting is part of their role, but it’s always good to know how your candidates are connected to the marketplace.
6. What’s Your Biggest Sales Success? How Did You Achieve It?
This is a candidate’s chance to show how all of the positive attributes they’ve outlined can produce results. Listen for disconnects between the skills they’ve highlighted and the actions/steps they took to close the deal.
7. What Was The Biggest Challenge When Selling Your Current Product?
You should recognize the challenges the outline. Experience is basically a set of challenges a candidate has overcome in the past. If those challenges are completely different, there’s no guarantee the experience is relevant.
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