The Sales Call Interview
So you’ve gotten through the tough interview, answered all the questions and asked a few of your own, impressing the interviewers every step of the way. Now you’ve made it to the second round of the interview process, which you’ve been informed is a mock sales call. Suddenly you are frozen and want to crawl into a dark hole. Your impressive resume is loaded with touts to your years of brilliant sales experience and you shutter at the thought of trying to sell a widget to the people who actually make the widgets.
Here’s a how guide to get through the mock sales call interview:
1. Treat it like a real sales call from the moment you step in the door. When an employer announces the mock sales call prior to your arrival that is an indicator that you need to arrive as the sales person. Don’t walk in as yourself and wait for the interviewer to launch you into your sales pitch. Let the interviewer and only the interviewer change up the format if necessary. You won’t look silly or childish, this is what the employer is expecting and they are looking to be dazzled.
2. Come prepared with a set of qualifying questions that will uncover the opportunity. This is fairly easy to accomplish because everything the employer wants potential clients know about their products or services is played out in black and white on their website. Study the entire website including testimonials and case studies. This should guide you in the creating your questions. Try to keep your questions to no more than 5 or 6 and ensure they are open ended so that you are getting the interviewer (potential customer) talking.
3. Yes there will be objections. Why on earth would a company object to their own product? This is a common interview tactic, not to throw off the interviewee, but because potential customers DO object and these people know the objections better than anyone. So you can bet that what you come up against will be a common objection in that field. One common objection is price, but a good sales person knows that this objection could mean many things. There are several ways to overcome this and many of the other objections that could come up. Get online and do some research.
4. Make a Mock/Real Follow up Call. A few days after the mock sales call, make a follow up call but stay in character. In reality you are following up on the actual position and more than likely the interviewer will break you out of character right away. This just shows initiative and your commitment, and may just be the small thing that tips the scales into your favor.
If you are prepared and confident and do your very best, this will shine through in the interview. Asking the right questions are key and the interviewer will send you signals if you are headed in the right direction. Look online for tons of tips and ideas to impress during a mock sales call.