The interview is just the final stage of a process where the candidate is assessed on its ability to tackle questions, sometimes practically, and sometimes it might be manipulative and pressured. As far as sales are concerned, this is totally based on your previous professional performances, and if you’re a fresher, it’s based on some practical questions. In this session, your abilities to convince, convey and impress are noticed. Let us discuss ‘How To Nail A Sales Interview?’.
There is no fixed formula of how to nail a sales interview, but there are few strong points that I call the gems of any interview. Different things work for different people. But the points which I have deduced are for sure going to nail it down. These will help you top up your game in interviews. Why you, Attitude, Presentation, Research, Prepare, Social Connectivity, and Communication are my gems to blow up your interview. You may find some terms pretty common, but you will realize the difference as you scroll down here.
The biggest question for you and the people taking your interview is why you should be given the opportunity. This is something I can’t tell you directly because this is something only you can know. You can be helped to identify it, but in the end, it’s totally about you. The area of sales needs proactive, energetic, physically fit, sharp, influencer, easy to approach and understand, truthful, and hardworking individual.
- Know your potential and know what can you do more and what you can change.
- Know your limits and boundaries. Don’t approve of the things which aren’t true about you or which you are not confident about.
- There is always room for improvement and be open to learning.
- Be confident about the job you’re approaching in terms of that you will be able to give justice to this job and to yourself.
- Sometimes we are not able to know our own potential, but the experienced people sitting in front of us know what we are capable of. So, when you introduce yourself just be an open book so that can identify your traits and mold you into a professional.
I really wanted to write this point as confidence, but no. I realized that these days every individual is confident enough but what matters is that they don’t allow it to turn into overconfidence. So essential is the tone and facial expressions which you carry inside the room.
- Your first impression is your last impression. Try to make it as positive as you can.
- Your tone defines your nature.
- Your way of interaction shouldn’t be intimidating or manipulative.
- A descent smile is your weapon.
- Don’t nod. Use replies like yes, sure, definitely, etc.
If you talk politely and your expressions don’t match your tone, it might be a problem. Both of these go hand in hand. During the interview, never try to be over-smart or don’t show yourself as too intellectual in your field. Show them that you are ready to learn. Your body language shouldn’t be as if you are ready to charge at them like a bull. Sit straight with a 90 degrees angle, use fewer hand actions. Avoid frowning or shoulder movements as well. This is not a good gesture, and they will definitely judge you on this as in the sales department, a lot of interaction happens with the customer. So if u fail to convince and not make your panel satisfied, how would you be able to do it with the customer? How will you win their confidence and trust? It’s a minus point if you have anything negative in the way you sit or walk, etc.
Your Personal Presentation/Appearance
These are among the two most important aspects you must take care of while preparing to go for an interview. It is essential to look presentable for an interview in any department but especially for sales because there is a lot of fieldwork and customer interaction. An individual needs to be dressed and groomed well with good hygiene to impress the panel. Your physique or body smell is something you cannot change, but some things can definitely be improved. You are perfect as you are born, but you can always better yourself by modifying yourself like staying fit, keeping good care of your skin and hair and personal hygiene shower daily, and using alcohol-free soaps, deodorants, and perfumes restrict your body from smelling.
- Always choose clothes which make you look smart and which boost your confidence from within. Take care that they aren’t too loose or too tight or too old direct out from the trunk kind of. They shouldn’t be too old-fashioned or too futuristic. Choose clothes which are according to the current trends.
- Being attractive is attractive. And an attractive personality is better than good looks.
- Grooming and hygiene should be a part of your daily life.
Research on the Property/Product
Before you go to the war, you always check about your enemy and its strength. Similarly, always research about your company. Be thorough with its history, current status, business trends, competition in the market, media reputation, etc. This is beneficial in the ways below;
- You will have answers related to the company.
- Do find about their sales department and its heads. Anyone could be a part of the panel or maybe all of them can be taking your interview. Don’t panic, you’ll know about them from their website and on their social media accounts. This will help you in knowing about the person sitting in front of you. You can own their likes and dislikes, just for the moment for your own benefit.
- You can always give your answers in context with the company, which already researched about. This is always a plus point for you.
- Inform them about them. If you know then you know what I mean. Just don’t offend them by being over-excited about your knowledge.
- Be their solution. You will know their weaknesses so answer in such a way that you become their answer to their problems. The research you did earlier will definitely help you find their weaknesses or lows.
Prepare and Study Your Resume
Before the panel actually meets you, they form a certain image by looking into your resume. Most important is that they ask questions related to the details provided by you in the document. Sometimes they even connect your details to the company and counter-question it. So preparation of your CV is a crucial step as it showcases your abilities, skills, interests, and personality. It speaks for you, so prepare it as if you’re speaking through these pages. Give justice to yourself by elaborating yourself in it.
- Don’t feel as if any of your hobbies is any less or not important enough to be mentioned. Give minute details about yourself.
- Don’t fake it. Always be true to yourself and your resume. It would be easier to remember if asked about it.
- Include all your professional experiences or internships. Avoid mentioning gaps or be ready with appropriate reasons.
- Don’t forget to include your achievements in the highlights.
- Always have answers to when, where, why, and how’s of your CV.
- Lastly, whatever you mention in your CV, just remember it at the time of the interview. At no cost, your answer should differ from your details. It provides a negative impression that you might be lying. Make it short but be true to it.
Good Social Connectivity
Sales are about spreading your product to the maximum number of people or automatically reaching out to your product. It’s always about the people and for the people. Be an individual with a lot of human sources in various fields.
- Try to find a bridge between you and interviewers which you can connect with them. This will give them a homelike feeling which eventually turns into comfort. This will increase their confidence in your candidature for the post. This is a positive trait for a salesman.
- Create a bond with them. I understand it’s not a very long period for a bond to be formed but trust me it’s possible. Choose correct statements and dialogues.
- Have social media accounts on various sites and on professional ones too. This will make them believe that you aren’t a scam. Plus you being socially active will make them see their profit in you.
Be a Speaker (Communication)
Sales are incomplete without good communication. This is mandatory for a salesman. Try not to be confused with what you speak and think. Your tongue, thoughts, and words should be in sync with each other. Try not to use harsh words or words which might be rude to the person listening.
- Avoid using direct negative words like no, impossible, not at all.
- Use easy and simple language.
- Give logic behind your answers.
- Try not to fumble.
- Preplan your words before going for the interview.
- Markdown good quotations from known personalities, you can use them while answering.
- Trust your perspective for an answer. People appreciate creativity and new ways of approaching issues.
In the end, wrap it up with what you believe in for this work that you have applied. Tell them what this job means for you. And how you can bring a new touch to their area. Don’t let your chin down even if it went bad. Let your confidence and smile talk for you. Humbly greet them. Leave the room with the same energy you entered. I hope these points will work or would have worked for you.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- How to answer a question which is very tricky? If any question is tricky, imagine it from your perspective. Then, answer it and do give the logic behind your answer. Please be sharp in choosing the correct words for your answer. In the end, conclude that it is your perspective, and you are open to changes and learning new concepts.
- Is sales interviews very difficult to clear? Honestly, it isn’t difficult to crack this interview because sales are about convincing your customer and conveying them the information correctly. You have to have good confidence, definitely the knowledge of the field, and be calm.
- How to answer situation-based questions? Think that it’s a sales meeting taking place. Think as if you are a part of the situation and answer accordingly. Remember to be fearless and fierce.
- How do I know that I have made through the interview? If there was pressure in the starting and ended on a lighter tone, you are done with it. Also, if you get smiles and praises, then be happy about your performance.