Focus on Interview-Specific Questions

It’s more about crafting questions unique to your interview, as any question that can be applied to all interviews is probably not that polarizing (aside from compensation, etc).

When it comes to the role, outside of experience, aspirations, and flexibility, what is functionally or situationally important? Add one or two of these topics to the base focus topics. For a salesperson, this might mean their current network.

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Base Focus Topics:

1) Experience
2) Aspirations
3) Flexibility

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EXPERIENCE

Questions focused around a candidates technical ability as well as their interactions with coworkers.

– What’s your experience selling windows?
– What territories do you cover?
– When it comes to approaching a cold lead, whats your standard operating procedure?

ASPIRATIONS

Questions looking for ideas on how a candidate sees their career developing long term.

– What does a successful career long term look like to you?
– How do you want to see your career develop long term?
– What type of environment would keep you producing at your best?

FLEXIBILITY

Questions to gauge overall flexibility of candidate functionally and travel-wise.

– If we were to introduce facing contractors into the mix, would that make you more or less interested in this role?
– How much overnight travel are you comfortable with?
– If there was a chance we needed you to relocate within the first four years, would that make you less interested in this role?

NETWORK

Questions to understand what the candidate’s current influence or reach is in regards to the product they will be selling. Imagine this interview is for a manufacturer and this salesperson is driving specifications with architects.

– How familiar are you with the architect community in the assigned territory?
– What groups or associations are you a member of?
– What do architects like seeing most?

Written by 

President of Legacy Search, James Aiken has been dynamically involved in recruiting the elite candidates within the building materials industry for many years. With strength in sales and operations, James has built out multiple sales teams for manufacturers and distributors alike. Email him at james@legacysearch.net

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